e-Khaya is designed to be a transitional home for those currently living in shacks in informal settlements, until they are provided with permanent housing.
e-Khaya has continued to evaluate the living experience of the occupants of the Blue Downs community e-Khaya project. They relate that their experience, through a range of cold and wet to hot and dry conditions, is a complete transformation in their lives - now comfortable, peaceful and safe.
As part of growing the project, e-Khaya is exploring a partnership with Heart Capital to develop a micro-enterprise model whereby township entrepreneurs are upskilled to manage their own construction entities, building transitional homes and manufacturing the ‘green’ components, in their communities. They are also planning to build a variety of projects in the Stellenbosch and Philippi area, with Heart Capital and the Stellenbosch Innovation District which will showcase the e-Khaya structure and associated sustainable technologies. These may include
- Rainwater harvesting, water storage tanks and simple manual transfer pump
- Solar lighting, cellphone charging and ‘solar daylighting’
- Solar water heating with hot and cold running water
- Grey water management
- Biomass stove for cooking and space-heating
- Solar cooking oven and solar ‘coolbox’
- Unbreakable security windows
- Mezzanine sleeping areas
- Simple compact furniture
The team is also now researching a dry composting sanitation and ‘wet-waste’ system that will be incorporated into a ‘bathroom’ in an e-Khaya, thus contributing to privacy, dignity and safety. These systems will form part of a service micro-enterprise, based on creating a useful resource from what is currently a noxious problem.
Discussions with the Department of Science and Technology are underway to explore whether pilot projects in other parts of South Africa would be viable.
e-Khaya continues to research and develop ‘low-cost sustainable living solutions’ that will help address current social, economic and environmental challenges created by the crisis of rapid urbanisation.