By Desiree Adaway, Development Specialist, WASI Global Peer
When I was a kid I loved mud. I loved playing in it, building with it. I may have even been obsessed with it at one point of my life. Mud baths, mud pies…you get the picture.
Here I am now 40 plus years later and mud has found its way back into my heart and life. I have the honor and privilege of working with passionate women leaders across South, Central, and North America to literally build their communities and a powerful global alliance.
I volunteer with Kleiwerks International’s Women of the Americas Sustainability Initiative (WASI).
WASI is an action-oriented alliance of women and women’s organizations that construct, educate, organize, and advocate for strong and empowered communities through ecological design-build practices, with the aim of creating a socially and ecologically resilient world.
The conventional building industry is the worst polluter and consumer of energy on the planet. Buildings, including construction and demolition, account for over half of global energy use. Most of that energy is wasted through poor design and wasteful practices. There is a solution: Ecological design and building…. with women and girls at the forefront.
One of my favorite success stories is that of Elendil and Camila, from Argentina, who started building with their mom when they were 8 and 12 years old. They’ve gone on to share with others as they became teenagers. Camila even helps organize an international gathering of natural builders. These young women have become trusted resources and leaders in their communities. Over the years, mothers and daughters have built their own houses and studios together. Single moms have started their own natural building businesses and become important leaders and resources in their communities.
When women and girls have the skills, leadership training, and support networks in ecological design-build practices and appropriate technologies so that they can build their own houses and community centers, this provides not only the means for basic survival, but for lasting security and self-determination. Women are powerful allies in sustainable development because they most often lead efforts to secure water, food, fuel, education and health care for their families and communities.
These women and girls use mud to transform their economic lives.
If you’d like to get involved and help grow the learning opportunities and global alliance of women natural builders, be in touch!
Sponsor a training for a community.
Join us on a natural build project.
Volunteer with us a global peer.