Urban Resilience challenge winner Build Change is responding to one of the most ubiquitous issues across the world’s urban slums—poorly built housing that is unfit to withstand any sort of shock. While the need for retrofitting such homes to prepare for disaster is imminently clear, the cost of building and lack of information among slum residents about the dangers of unfit housing has prevented much progress in adopting lifesaving building practices.
Build Change knows this all too well, having designed resilient homes and schools in emerging nations and trained communities to build them for years. Most of their efforts have been focused on post-disaster reconstruction, when financial resources from aid and relief agencies are abundant. With Amplify, Build Change seeks to pioneer a new, more proactive approach. They’ll create and implement micro-retrofitting guidelines to help slum residents in the Philippines improve their house construction at an affordable cost and with relevant local materials. They will also pilot approaches to driving demand and financing for the upgrades, and a service model that ties it all together. With stronger structures, slums in the Philippines will see fewer deaths, injuries, and economic hardships caused by housing collapses.