Soon to be tucked in the hills southeast of Port-au-Prince, the Haiti Partner's Children's Academy is a totally self-sustaining community school for kindergarten ages up to grade 12. Designed by BAR Architects in collaboration with Architecture for Humanity, the learning facility will cater to about 450 students. The academy will be constructed from local materials, and it will be totally off-grid, sourcing its power from the sun, collecting rainwater, using composting toilets and it will even grow its own vegetables. Haiti Partners broke ground on the campus at the end of September, and it is expected to be totally complete in 2014.
Haiti Partners secured a 2.8 acre parcel in Bawosya, in the mountains 4 miles southeast of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The project will consist of eight classroom buildings with two classrooms each, as well as administrative offices, a library, and computer lab. There will also be a kitchen and dining area, auditorium plus amphitheater, composting latrines, guest houses for 36 guests, play and sports areas, and an organic garden. The academy is designed to serve as a model for the type of educational facilities Haiti Partners is working to build across the country. Students will learn seven skills and values: Spiritual and Moral Growth; Civic Responsibility and Empowerment; Environmental Stewardship; Entrepreneurship; Artistic Creativity and Individual Expression; Fluency in Haitian-Creole, French, and English; and Technological fluency especially with computers.
Since the academy is located away from the grid, it must be totally self-sufficient and off grid. To that end, Inveneo has donated a solar system to provide power for lights and the computer lab. Rainwater will be harvested and used for irrigation and a local well will be drilled to source potable water. Composting toilets will manage waste and students will manage an organic garden to grow fruits and vegetables, of which the excess will be sold.
All of the buildings will be constructed with locally sourced limestone, reinforced cinder blocks, and louvered walls to encourage natural ventilation. Ground breaking occurred on September 22nd and the first phase of construction will lead to the creation of three classroom buildings, the administration building, and a large reservoir. The project is expected to be completed sometime in 2014.