HTA are designing on-site pupil accommodation for a school in Chimbota, Malawi

26 Jul 2022

HTA’s Ewan & Segolene embarked on their journey to visit Malawi. HTA have been working with Our Enterprise & Phillip Chibisa since 2019 to design on-site pupil accommodation for a school in Chimbota which is in desperate need of more safe accommodation that will enable an increased number of pupils to learn, paving the way to a better future and allowing children from remote areas to attend the school too.

The initiative started with an competition in 2019 which generated many ideas within HTA and resulted in two winning concepts. Ewan & Segolene worked together on a small, elegantly designed accommodation block for ten kids, with cooking facilities and Nerea produced a beautiful vision for a campus-style village with all the different activities that could make it an attractive place to live. The judges felt the two submissions were compatible and awarded them both first place. To deliver the vision, Ewan & Segolene have traveled to the school to find out if our competition designs are truly what’s required by talking to pupils and spending time in the local area. We’ve also teamed up with humanitarian architecture charity Article 25, experts in delivering such schemes.

We have been following Ewan and Seg’s daily updates from Malawi, and here is what they have got up in the last few days.

They met with nine female students from the boarding house and discussed their experience and what they liked/disliked about the existing blocks. Ewan and Seg also visited self-boarding houses for boys and girls to find out the girls had severe security concerns. In contrast, the boys were focused on more national issues (no electricity, access to water).

Ewan and Seg also explored the beautiful coast of Malawi and learned about Malawian fishing techniques such as fishing at nightfall with giant lamps attached to the front of the boats to attract the fish. The catch is then dried at the shore on big platforms for four days before going to the markets at Nkhata Bay.

The locals at the village organised a traditional group of Malipenga dancers to perform and the next few days were spent exploring the lakeside and other local villages in the area to see what the community has been developing.

We are looking forward to finding out more about the trip and what design conclusions have been made so we can start our fundraising journey to deliver this amazing project.