We build in rammed earth because it is a sustainable and affordable way of building. It is an alternative to brick buildings (firing bricks uses firewood and contributes to deforestation) and an alternative to building from concrete (making cement causes lots of environmental damage).
We have built and are building many buildings from rammed earth at Sam’s Training Village and are now building an office for African Vision Malawi in Njewa, a suburb of Lilongwe. Njewa is also a demonstration site for the benefit of people who cannot travel from Lilongwe to Sam’s Village.
Both at Njewa and Sam’s Village the buildings are surrounded by permaculture gardens.
Read here The Story of Njewa – building an office from rammed earth – with photos:
The Story of Njewa
A borehole for a water source
- The earth is often too hard to dig straight away and you need to soften it with water
Somewhere safe to store your equipment
- For us, a shipping container that will become a building itself
A fence around your site
Profiling the office site
Digging the foundations
Watering the foundation trenches with termite poison (soliginum)
Filling the foundations with stones
- Stones of various sizes fit together
Topping the foundation stones with a layer of rammed earth and lime
Laying a metal sheet to prevent both damp and termites
Making formwork, door frames and window frames
Setting up the formwork for the walls
Building the walls
Planting trees on site
Add the roof
The roof is on
If you would like to visit Njewa, just a 15 min drive from the centre of Lilongwe on the Mchingi Road, and see our projects in action please email us.
You can also follow progress on our Facebook page.
To donate to our projects, please click here: