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Sauvegarde du Patrimoine Culturel, Social et Architectural des Maisons en Bois de Cuba

Sauvegarde du Patrimoine Culturel, Social et Architectural des Maisons en Bois de Cuba

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Written by Bruno Panis   

Port-au-Prince, 15 de December de 2010

Construction of the temporary ACTED shelter: The operation will provide employment for 250 families, train carpenters on techniques which are new, and on the use of electrical tools, etc. About 1700 families will have a roof to take shelter.

assembling workshop

The workshop and the production

The construction of the production workshop of the shelters has ended. Even though the political atmosphere has been unstable during December, when there were days in which we could not get to our work because of the really violent popular demonstrations caused by the results of the presidential elections, and the rainy days.

The carpentry machinery installed, and the skeleton and panel assembling areas are already operational.

We will start with the production of the first shelter and its hoisting at the workshop’s backyard to check the last details.

The timber supplies have arrived, we have 800 cubic meters, 40 % of the projects’ total. The supplies of plywood, used for the paneling of the walls, are arriving. The supplies of panels must be arriving in short. A large tent will be used in short as a hardware store.

At first, we must be producing about ten units per day, as everything gets to work properly, then we will start to produce 20 or 25 shelters per day.

The staff includes 21 carpenters already hired, and 3 chiefs of workshop.El personal está compuesto por 21 carpinteros contratados, 3 jefes de taller

For the fitting, wood skeleton, and panel mounting:for the fitting, wood skeleton, and panel mounting

  • A responsible for the preparation of the kits, the storing, and coordination.
  • A chief that will be responsible for the complete structure.
  • 25 employees in charge of the logistics.
assembling workshop

Logistics and implementation of the Shelters in situ:

The main problem the NGO ACTED is facing in the area of Port-au-Prince is the selection of the beneficiaries of these houses:

In fact, they must prove that they have a largely enough land property where to install the small work of 18.5 square meters.In fact, they must prove that they have a largely enough land property where to installed the small work of 18.5 square meters A very delicate issue in the case of mass neighborhoods which were completely destroyed like Fort National since it was a ghetto of small streets and hovels so close to each other that it was almost inextricable.which is a very delicate issue in the case of mass neighborhoods which were completely destroyed like Fort National The properties hardly reach the 10 square meters and are completely inaccessible.the properties hardly reach the 10 square meters and are completely inaccessible.

Moreover, the shelters come with an independent latrine, a water container and a rain water collection system.the shelters come with an independent latrine, a water container and a rain water collection system.

It is necessary to have an approximately 28-square-meter area to install this type of shelter. We are facing a huge problem of space and logistics to install the shelters in the area of Port-au-Prince.

The working parties at the construction site:

  • One construction-site chief
  • 40 working parties are planned for the installation with 40 carpenters as team leaders and 4 workers.

2 days to hoist each shelter:2 days to hoist each shelter: Supply, hoisting, laying the foundations, placement of the panels, channels and gutters.

It will be needed two trucks to transport the kits and one truck of sand and gravel for the roofs and foundations

arrival of the wood stock Storage panels

Social situation

It is difficult in this time of election. Doubts, demonstrations, barricades on the streets, burning tires, confrontations between members of opposite political parties, throwing rocks, and gunshots…

All in all, there are some days when we are not allowed to leave 30 rue des Nimes (CAMAHA Headquarters), and we understand very well that it is not wise to go against those regulations, even though we do not do many things which can be described as walking from one place to the other waiting for the calm to be restored. We wait patiently and finally after two or three days everything goes back to normal, people take over their routines, the city gets back to life, and so do the traffic jams.

We are waiting for the results of the negotiations related to the second round of the elections in January, which must be announced in December 22nd. We are still waiting for some difficult days!

The cholera, which is not mentioned anymore, is still devastating the population. It all seems that the epidemic is almost under control, however it is now endemic. It also seems that the stump of cholera found here, which was identified as the same of Bangladesh, has that same origin and was introduced by the MINUSTAH troops (blue helmets) coming from that country.

Nobody is perfect, indeed!

Bruno Panis
Mission Chief of “Camaha for Haiti”