Main Goals - General activities - field of expertise
The Nubian Vault Association’s (AVN) mission is to improve economic and housing conditions through low-carbon buildings and vocational training for as many people as possible. By spreading the Nubian Vault technique, AVN addresses the triple issue of housing, economic development and climate change adaptation in West Africa. The Nubian Vault is an ancestral construction technique, originating in Upper Egypt, using only raw earth bricks and earth mortars: no wood or straw, no metal sheets, no timber beams or rafters.
To disseminate the NV technique in the African regions where it is appropriate and needed, AVN has created an innovative program: A Roof + A Skill + A Market. The program is based on a simple and strong belief: the NV technique will spread quickly only if a real autonomous market is pump-primed and created: in other words, if people want it, and if local entrepreneurs have the skills to provide it independently.
A Roof - A kick-starting methodology based on networks of extension agents who start, energize and autonomize the NV market (consisting of qualified masons and informed clients), in order to spread the NV concept in the territory. This method creates a demand for the building of Nubian Vault structures in the private sector (formal or informal, rural or urban) as well as in the institutional sector (educational, health, agricultural buildings, etc.), and the training and qualification of an initial generation of NV master masons on these construction sites.
A Skill - AVN supports the reinforcement of know-hows among the appropriate housing sector professionals (apprentices, masons, craftsmen, construction companies, project managers) through boosted training (individual support, technical learning units, managerial or entrepreneurial learning units), project management support, technical research and knowledge capitalization
A Market - AVN supports the growth of the appropriate housing sector through the establishment of specific financial products (housing microfinance) and support to institutional actors (integration into national and local development action plans, regulatory evolution, etc.).