Progress on the housing is going well. Last week, local volunteers from Lott Carey church helped clear the site behind the church.
Combining Moses’ experience with all that Heather and Gerson are learning, I see and hope for a very smooth road ahead lined with many, many homes. The goal was to prepare for this week’s efforts by our paid mason to hit the site and continue blazing forward; and they have. Moses and his team are professional and work like it. He has a sharp mind, and eye for the details, and a team focus.
Yesterday we poured the slab, the footings are in place just as planned, columns are tied better and look cleaner, all the materials are in place and ready to go for the masonry walls, and even a tarp was laid down as a water barrier. This was Moses idea, to help prevent water pressure casting up from the high water table below.
I regret I am not on site much these days, maybe just quickly to see how things are going. Time in the “office” is using up most of the days: forms, budget spread sheets, proposals, e-mail, all take the day and fade it away. The last week has been a tedious task of drawing up a guide of 3-dimensional details for use on the Saint Ard project. That region did not suffer the type of destruction from the earthquakes as the Leogane region did. Moses listens and works hard to understand. Even without the Creole language I can tell. The two of us and a sketch pad have been able to work most things out. When Gerson and Heather are around it helps a bit more.
The UN has published a design guide in Creole. I hope to host a group of masons for a review period of the manual, questions, and answers. I think it will help. Most reconstruction is by private Haitians fixing their homes, or for-profit Haitian businesses striving to get back into business. We have our engineered house building going up in the back of the church, while a two-room new school is going up in the front peppered with the same conditions for future failure.