Association la Voute Nubienne (AVN)

AVN's mission is to improve housing conditions through an appropriate architecture, as soon as possible, for as many people as possible. In sub-Saharan Africa, the struggle to obtain decent housing plunges millions of families into a vicious circle of poverty. AVN offers a solution to this problem, based on three integrated concepts: A Roof + A Skill + A Market AVN organises the training and support of local Nubian Vault (NV) builders and entrepreneurs to promote this solution on a large-scale, with a view to developing a self-sustaining market in NV construction. As a result, families can acquire affordable, sustainable, and decent housing, at the same time improving their economic cond...
Feb 9, 2012

Start of 2011/12 Season; New Website

AVN-Mali
AVN-Mali's offices in Pelengana Cultural Centre

NV Masons' Congresses

The 2011/12 construction season kicked off in October with regional masons' congresses in Boromo, Burkina Faso, and in Segou, Mali, as well as  a sub-regional seminar  in Boromo . The local AVN-Burkina and AVN-Mali teams took part, as well as Thomas Granier, Bruno Jarno (AVN statistician) and representatives of our franchised partners from Benin and Senegal. Work on the first VN building sites started at the same time, but will intensify this month, when farming work tails off. However, this year, the rains have been less than usual, demonstrating yet again the fragility of the environment of the Sahel. This season’s harvest is likely to be reduced, which probably means that construction activity will also be affected.

AVN-Mali Office opens

The new AVN team in Mali has moved into its dedicated office space in the Cultural Centre in Pelengana, Segou.. The Cultural Centre was built by a team of VN masons last year, and is well situated close to the Mairie in Pelengana. The AVN team at present consists of Ismaila Diallo (Assistant Director), Souleymane Koné (Extension Agent), assisted by Francis Tiene, on secondment from the AVN team in Boromo, and Mathieu Hardy, architect and acting Director. A second extension agent will be recruited by the end of the year.

Senegal: Opening of a new AVN Program in the Podor Region

AVN has set up a partnership with the Association "le Partenariat St-Louis Région Nord - PSLR" , which coordinates links between the French Nord-Pas-de-Calais region, and the region of St-Louis in Senegal.  Two PSLR members (Bachir Niang et Malyck Sy) went to Burkina Faso in October to take part in the opening congress of the 2011/12 construction season, and to complete their training as AVN extension agents. This new program, in the next few years, will pump-prime the market for NV housing in the Podor region - birthplace of the famous Senegalese musician, Baaba Maal.

New AVN Website

Please check out our stunning new website, at www.new.lavoutenubienne.org : the newly designed site contains more information, images, and videos, and is much easier to navigate than the old one. The English version is now complete, although the French, Spanish, and Arabic ones are still being finalized.

With best wishes to all our supporters for 2012

Tony Kaye

The AVN-Mali team
The AVN-Mali team
AVN seminar, Boromo
AVN seminar, Boromo
Masons
Masons' congress, Segou, Mali

Links:

Nov 22, 2011

AVN-Mali headquarters opens in Segou

Pelengana Cultural Centre (1)
Pelengana Cultural Centre (1)

The new AVN team in Mali moved into its dedicated office space in the Cultural Centre in Pelengana, Segou, on September 1st. The, very impressive, cultural centre (see photos) was built by a team of VN masons last year, and is well situated close to the Mairie in Pelengana.

The AVN team at present consists of Ismaila Diallo (Assistant Director), Souleymane Koné (Extension Agent), assisted by Francis Tiene, on secondment from the AVN team in Boromo, Burkina Faso., and Mathieu Hardy, architect and acting Director. A second extension agent will be recruited by the end of the year.

The team is now working on the setting up of the second three-year phase of the AVN program in Mali, with a major focus on the region around Segou. This phase kicked off with a very successful congress of the VN masons from Mali, and a meeting of the local 'champions' of the existing pilot village deployment programs, both held in the second fortnight of October in Pelengana.

Pelengana Cultural Centre (2)
Pelengana Cultural Centre (2)
AVN Mali office, Pelengana
AVN Mali office, Pelengana
AVN Mali team
AVN Mali team

Links:

Nov 17, 2011

Results & Impacts of the AVN Program by 2011

In September this year, we had a chance to collate the necessary data to provide a review the impacts of the last ten years' work by AVN and its network of masons; the results are very encouraging:

- Since the start of the program, 1309 vaults have been built by Nubian vault (NV) masons and entrepreneurs, for 533 clients, in 244 locations (villages, hamlets, towns) in 3 countries (Burkina Faso, Mali, Senegal)
- If all the vaults built were to be placed end-to-end, this would reach a total length of 9.7 km (Note: a standard vault, our unit of measurement, has internal dimensions of 7M long X 3,25 M wide)
- In total, 214 NV masons have been trained, of whom half are at the foreman and/or entrepreneur level; and there are currently 296 apprentices in training
- 10,000 people use, live in, or sleep in NV buildings; of the total built, 85% are for private houses, and 15% are community-use buildings.
- Approximately 18,000 trees, 25,000 tonnes of CO2-equivalent, and approximately 15,000 corrugated iron roofing sheets have been saved as a result of NV construction, as compared to the alternatives
- Approximately 750,000 Euros of local economic impacts have been generated by the program
- Since 2000 the program has experienced an average annual growth rate of 36%.

One of the most encouraging findings is that over one-third of the NV construction market is now completely autonomous and self-sustaining: 37% of NV clients are found directly by NV builders / entrepreneurs. Of the remainder, 40% come via a local intermediary or ’champion’, and only 23% via AVN itself. So, in the regions where AVN is active, we are well on the way to a growing and independent market in NV construction, permitting us - with your help -  to soon move on and target our resources in new regions.

The attached PDF file contains slides and images highlighting the above findings - feel free to download this and use to help explain to your friends and colleagues the impacts of our work.

PS Some other news - at the last meeting of the General Asembly of AVN, held in Septamber, I was elected President of the Association, with David Sillou, our IT specialist and strategy expert, as Vice-President.

Links:


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