The Earthquake-proof New Homes

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30/12/18 – The construction of the new homes has now truly started! We are building the safest children homes in Indonesia! We are so grateful we are able to do so. Just this month we had 261 earthquakes and aftershocks. In 2018 a total of 3,639 earthquakes and aftershocks have been recorded in Lombok by the Badan Meteorologi, Klimatologi, dan Geofisika (Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysical Agency).

The children are currently enjoying two weeks of school holidays. The children with family are spending their vacation time at home. The children without any family are enjoying daily activities at Peduli Anak such as hikes through the rice fields, fishing, swimming, beach visits, playing soccer, dance, arts and crafts, music and games. There is a TV in every classroom temporarily being used as a dormitory and all 8 toilets with showers are now operational.

All the children are in good health, happy, cheerful and they have been given lice and scabies treatment. The game of marbles is very popular, and there is lots of laughing and singing. Occasionally the small tremors frightened them and made a few girls scream. We also welcomed three new children via Social Services who were in dire need: January, Habib and Ridwan.

The structure of the new homes

We are very grateful for the design of the earthquake-proof (seismic proof) homes. We will be building 14 semi-detached houses. A room designated to be the carer’s office will be connecting each pair. Each house will accommodate 10 children plus 1 carer.

In total, we will be able to accommodate 140 children, which is close to double the number we currently have! We are very grateful to all the individuals, companies and organizations who are making it possible to help more children in need. We feel so fortunate to have found so many caring and supporting hearts.

Each semi-detached house will have 4 chicken feet foundations from high strength reinforced 16mm rebar in combination with a 123 ratio mixture of concrete (cement, sand & stones) in pre-compacted ground. The chicken foot foundation provides the structure with a power grip, the reinforced steel will hold the structure in place in case of tremors and extra strength comes from using 16mm instead of 10mm rebar. The horizontal beams at the bottom of the house and again at the top of the structure are also reinforced.

The walls of the house will be made of Aerated Concrete blocks. These are lightweight masonry blocks. This advanced technology produces extremely small, finely dispersed air pockets within the material. They are sizable (30x60x10 cm) blocks that can be lifted with 2 fingers. Hebel glue will cement the blocks together and these walls will be anchored into the reinforced steel column construction. Lightweight aluminum will be used for the roof frame and spandex roof sheets will be used for the roof itself. These spandex sheets will have been treated to prevent rusting with colorbond. The window frames will also be aluminum and for the ceiling silica plates will be used which are fire resistant. The outer walls will get a water-resistant light yellow coating. The roof, the gutters, and the doors will be dark green.

The best compliment comes from the structural engineers saying that we are building bunkers. During an earthquake, the whole structure will move, but it will not collapse. It is like putting a shoe box on the ground during an earthquake. The shoebox itself will move, but it will not fall apart.

We now have 2 teams of construction workers. One team of men working on the renovation of the school buildings and the kitchen and school. This team is managed by our very own construction expert Chris Harvey from Australia. We are extremely grateful that Chris has offered to volunteer till all rebuilding projects have been completed (hopefully in July) and that he is passing on his knowledge and expertise locally. The other team of men is hired by the contractor in charge of building our new houses. These men come from Java and live on the grounds in tents. Both Chris Harvey and founder Chaim Fetter – who has become quite an expert himself – are keeping a close eye on the contractor to ensure quality.

If you are curious to see what Peduli Anak will look like once all the renovations and rebuilding have been completed click here

In our next newsletter, we will zoom in on our plans and need to add a Middle School to our curriculum. In the meantime, if you have not had a chance to listen to the song our children recently recorded – click here. We are so very proud of them! The song is called ‘We are Strong’.

Continue to follow us via Facebook and via the blog on our website. Please always feel free to reach out to us with any questions, feedback, and ideas. We welcome them all.