Humanitarian for hire

Developing World Construction Projects


Ian Anderson in Rwanda

In Rwanda building classrooms

I took this image of Rwandan bricklayers building a new classroom just outside Kigali in 2007 on Project Umubano (David Cameron/Conservatives’ social action project). The orphanage/school helps support and educate young people in this ravaged community.

It is difficult for me not to get exited about East Africa as I find it one of the most amazing places on the planet. Although facing tough difficulties every single day, a smile and laughter is never far away.

Need advice on a project with a construction element?

I am available on a consultancy basis to assist and advise on construction issues in developing world situations. This may mean teaching local artisans your preferred construction methods, managing a team of local labour or a mixed team of local labour and your volunteers/employees.

I have extensive experience gained from working alongside local artisans, (often trowel in hand!) in Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania and Kenya. Including working with organizations such as CARE International, Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO), DfID, British Council, Different Travel community projects and with Project Umubano, the recent British Conservative Party initiative in Rwanda.

Need advice on a project within a Trauma and Disaster context?

I am available on a consultancy basis to assist and advise on projects in conjunction with disaster planning or recovery in the developing world. This may range from assessing needs through to managing the teams involved in the aftermath.

I have extensive experience gained from working on the aftermath of El-Nino flooding in Uganda, providing logistical support for MSF (medicines Sans Frontiers) during cholera outbreaks; providing logistical and program support for volunteers with Raleigh International, and working with genocide survivors in Rwanda.

Please feel free to email me to discuss your project. I also have a great working relationship with an architect who is very experienced in designing for projects based in developing countries, (if I can drag him out of the DRC or whichever far flung corner of the world he is working!).

A little bit of background…

I have a masters in Trauma and Disaster Management and as a project manager, assisted both in the planning stages and on the ground during “Project Umubano”. This recent Conservative Party initiative takes volunteers from the party each year to work alongside Rwandan people building strong ties, mutual respect and understanding between our two countries.

I also lived in Uganda from 1997 until the millennium working for CARE International, funded By DfID and supported by Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO)

Working in Uganda involved finding and training local artisans in suitable and sustainable construction techniques, forming teams, arranging and overseeing materials deliveries in remote areas and on difficult terrain, on site training, quality control, managing the newly trained local artisans as contractors, site visits to the Health Units covering the 2463 square Km’s of Mbale district, mostly off road. Managing accountability trails and community participation organisation within the wider project aims and goals.

I managed up to 10 teams in rural African districts, employing over 150 local men and women (yes, many African women are employed in supporting and skilled roles on African building sites). This often involved teaching suitable and sustainable techniques to rural artisans or ‘fundies’, both on building sites and on community based projects.

Feel free to email me and we can discuss your requirements or just leave a quick note in the comments box below.

Stay well

Comments 2

  1. Hi. I’ve taken a look at your CV, and you just might be the guy we are looking for, if you’re game for a few months’ stint in Nigeria
    We are embarking on a housing project in Abuja , and need to fast track training of artisans to work on the project.
    To do this, we are angling for support under a donor funding scheme.
    Let’s know if you’d like to discuss this further.

    1. Post

      Hi Tony,
      Thanks for getting in touch about your project in Nigeria. Unfortunately my work is more on a consultancy basis due to family commitments these days. I can handle short orientation trips into project countries of up to a month, but to spend ‘a few months’ away at this time is quite impossible (young kids eh!)

      Let me know if I can help based on this. One piece of advice I can give you is not to stray too far from what the local guys are already doing. Mostly for legacy reasons. No point in building something that the community will not have the resources to maintain. Adapting existing working practices is the way to go!
      Path of least resistance is a mantra for a good reason!

      Good luck with the project Tony and thanks for reaching out.

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