BY: JESSICA BEUKER
It was five years ago that a devastating earthquake struck Haiti, affecting more than three million people. Over 250,000 houses and 30,000 buildings collapsed, leaving people without jobs and families without homes. The nights that followed the disaster saw people sleeping in the littered streets, on the hard pavement and in makeshift tents – comfort and safety had been lost.
Five years have passed, but the scars of the tragedy remain – buildings left half torn and homes that have never been rebuilt. In Haiti, there is 25 million tons of debris covering the country. Families who were affected by the earthquake are still struggling – living in tattered tents, on incomes well below the poverty line. Today, the social and economic conditions of this country are worse than ever before.
Now a Netherland-based company called Mobile Factory is giving debris a new purpose. The machine, which can fit into a portable container, is shipped and placed in a location with a lot of surrounding debris. The chunks of debris are put into the machine, which transforms them into liquid concrete. The bricks formed are called Q-Bricks and they require no cement or glue – instead they stack together just like a Lego block. The Q-Bricks are used to build new homes, while simultaneously cleaning up the harmful wreckage of war torn and disaster ravaged countries.
According to Boredpanda, one factory produces enough Q-Bricks to build 10 to 20 homes per day. Not only that, but construction of the houses generates jobs for the locals, which stimulates and helps to repair the local economy.
Since the earthquake, Haiti has struggled to rebuild the community and people have struggled to rebuild their lives. The wreck and rubble continues to be a reminder of that tragic day, and a barrier in the way of a stable economy. What Mobile Factory is trying to give to Haiti, and countries all over the world, are the tools to rebuild lost communities – and to fade the scars of calamity.