Speaking at a conference in Rwanda in 2013, Dr. Paul Farmer, co-founder of Partners in Health, said, “Rwanda is a theater of something extraordinary. This is a country that can teach a lot to other settings in the world, including the United States. Everything you see here has been done through collaboration and taking on problems.”
It is in this spirit of collaboration and creatively addressing problems that the Rwinkwavu Operating Rooms and Neonatal ICU project was designed and constructed. The project is the recipient of a 2015 SEED Award, an annual honor conferred by Design Corps for design projects that have made an exceptional impact in three key areas of development: social, economic, and environmental.
For the design of the addition, simple, local materials were selected. These included local stones for the retaining walls, standard fired-clay bricks for wall infill, and steel and wood for the doors and windows. The use of these simple materials kept project costs low and helped reduce the ecological footprint for the project, as all of the materials were acquired locally.