It is estimated that a large part of the world population, around 32%, are in need of humane and decent accommodation which has led to the concentration of slum dwellings. Slums have become a pressing issue for many nations, particularly the developing nations, where the gap between the rich and the poor is significant. Slums pose a lot of health hazards owing to a lack of proper sanitation, drinking water, sewer system, electricity and many other facilities that render the unsustainable and inhumane. To bring a quick solution to this blatant issue, Doug, a designer from Des Moines in Iowa has come out with the Abod Shelter, which is a lightweight and sustainable dwelling that can be built by the slum dwellers themselves in just 24 hours! Not only is this an innovative solution to the housing crisis that plagues countries world over, but it can also be erected in the most uninhabitable locations without the need of building machinery, industrial tools, water and electricity!
Doug, along with his teams helped him to put together this philanthropic effort to create humane shelters that could practically be erected in no time at all. This extremely cost effective shelter is also very flexible as its design can be altered to create a shelter according to personal requirements. The Abod Shelter has a core structure upon which one can include ‘accessories’ wherever suitable – whether it is a kitchen or doors and windows.
The Abod Shelter is actually made out of corrugated metal and some dwellers may choose to add an opaque plastic panel along the sides to facilitate day light usage, particularly in areas where it is not possible to get an electricity connection. The shelters also have inbuilt gutter systems in order to make sure that rainwater does not seep inside the home and also to make sure that the sanitation aspect of the home is well looked after. These houses can also be erected in a cluster and can be linked to one another in order to form a neighborhood community. The test pilot project o the Abod home or the first Abod neighborhood community was situated at a location that was in the suburbs of Johannesburg, South Africa. This project was extremely successful and has therefore given the impetus to initiate many other projects in those parts of the globe that have slums in high concentration.