identity card

Country of action since 2007, the deployment of AVN's programme in Mali now involves 5 regions: Ségou, Dioïla, Koutiala, San et Banamba. 17 local employees are disseminating the Nubian Vault.


Some members of AVN Mali


Agricultural production unit for Misola flour, Niéna

local context

  • Sudano-Sahelian climate
  • Rural population (80% smallholders)
  • Community support
  • Cultural homogeneity (language, religion, culture)
  • A strong need for economic development, especially in rural areas - GDP per capita: $724 (38th in Africa)*
  • Earth-based architecture widespread

* Source: World Bank / Actualitix (figures from 2015)


territorial rollout

key data

  • 2006-2008: construction of the first community buildings in partnership with local and international NGOs  
  • 2009: 1st local AVN team and expansion to the Ségou region
  • 2013 and 2014: expansion to the regions of Koutiala and Dioïla
  • 2015: expansion to the San-Tominian region
  • 2016: expansion to the Banamba region


Map showing deployment of AVN's Program in Mali (August 2016)

During season 2015-16:

  • +26% with 63 active pilot villages in 5 regions
  • +73 sites bringing the number of sites with at least one NV building up to 295
  • Expansion to a new region of deployment (Banamba) as part of the PGRNCC
  • Activities to prepare for expansion to a new region by 2018


Analysis by Sector of Activity

Technical Boosted Training (F-DYN T)
In addition to the traditional on-site training ("on-the-job" training), since 2014 AVN has been further bolstering the technical training received by masons and apprentices, taught by trainer masons selected for their technical, pedagogical and interpersonal skills. on season 2015-16, 72 working sites (17%) with technical boosted training have been completed included 19 in Mali.

Learn more on Technical Boosted Training

Entrepreneurial Boosted Training (F-DYN E)
Alongside support for technical training, AVN develops ways to strengthen entrepreneurial skills in order to boost their activities and their economic integration into the informal and formal construction markets. in 2016, 5 malian nv masons were selected to receive Entrepreneurial Boosted Training.

Learn more on entrepreneurial boosted training


In Mali, AVN has signed a partnership convention with the Mali Mortgage Guarantee Fund (FGHM) to provide funds to Malian MFIs. AVN must now continue its delicate work to identify reliable MFIs that might be interested by the product and that are located in one of the zones where the NV concept is being implemented.


buildings completed


Electrified Activity Area in Konséguéla

The success of the NV concept in Mali since the start of the programme was confirmed yet again this season, with the growth rate nearing 50%: the market kickstart method is well-adapted to Malian rural regions, community support makes the NV competitive and the exponential growth in demand means that the offer of training is an attractive one. 

This dynamic was also corroborated in Banamba, the new region expanded to as part of the launch of the first project to be managed by a national institutional actor, thus integrating the dissemination of the NV concept: the Natural Resources and Climate Change Management Project (PGRNCC), managed by the Agency for Environment and Sustainable Management (AEDD) and financed by the World Bank.

Kickstart promotions implemented at half of the worksites contributed to this remarkable production, which mostly focuses on housing for the core target group.

In the regions of Koutiala and Dioïla, where networking and the results of kickstarting are optimal, the first incentives for the general public will be tested next season, benefitting to the marketing of local masons. For AVN, this is an opportunity to test this lever for development in a favourable context, both in terms of receptiveness from the demand and in terms of production capacity of supply.

In the Cercle of Koutiala, a multi-stakeholder consultation has been launched (political and institutional actors from the building, development and professional training sectors) in order to galvanize the dissemination of the NV concept.

Summary of NV buildings constructed, 2015–2016:

  • 94% carried out in pilot villages
  • 92% of buildings built in rural areas
  • 93% used for housing
  • 97% built for the core target clientele (farmers, shopkeepers and civil servants)
  • 2% carried out with partner involvement (mainly the resettlement project)
  • 11% of worksites include boosted training activities
  • 48% of worksites include kickstarting exercises and/or incentives aimed at demand and supply


Training of a Workforce


The growing commitment of traditional Malian masons (who build with earth/zinc roofs or cement/zinc roofs) has led to exceptional growth in training. About one hundred of them joined the Malian supply workforce this season, increasing the pool of active masons by 40%.

The preacquired knowledge of masonry for this category of masons, as well as strengthened training at various worksites, helped in the qualification of 22 new foremen as well as a wave of new masons and apprentices.

The production capacity of the Malian supply means that it now makes sense to enter the market densification phase.


local partnerships

The partnership with the UACT, an agricultural cooperative, was ultimately not enacted this season, due to internal restructuring. That being said, UACT employees continued awareness-raising activities with the AVN regional team in the Tominian region, and the prospect still exists for cooperation next season.

A new partnership was launched with the Franco-Malian NGO Teriya Amitié Mali in the Niéna zone (Sikasso region). Very involved in recruiting and supervising masons for a project to construct an NV agricultural processing building that was completed this season, it will continue its actions in favour of local training next season.

The Mali branch of GERES implemented the second phase of the electrified activity zone, a showcase project with strong potential for replication and one to be promoted to institutional actors and those involved in development. For the second time, GERES supported the on-site training of a building entrepreneur in the NV concept.

Visit the partners webpage


institutional development

For the last two seasons, AVN has strengthened its advocacy efforts vis-à-vis national bodies, encouraging their interest in the NV solution both as an integrated solution that supports housing policies and as a solution for rural development, vocational training and employment, economic development, environmental protection and adaptation to climate change.

Rural development, economic development and sustainable development:

  • Adoption of the 2016–2018 Strategic Framework for Economic Recovery and Sustainable Development (CREDD), in which NVs are cited as an adapted construction solution to meet those challenges
  •  Partnership currently being established with the Koutiala inter-community body for the promotion of the NV technique and for vocational training and the integration of NV community buildings in PDSECs (Communal Social and Economic Development Plans) of the communes in the Cercle
  •  Holding of a multi-actor dialogue workshop in the Cercle of Koutiala: 98 people spoke about the environment, adapted housing, climate change and vocational training



  •   Consultation with the Malian Office for Housing (OMH) about incorporating a social housing project into the OMH's work programme for 2017, as well as taking into consideration AVN's proposals
  •  Signature of a partnership convention with the Mali Mortgage Guarantee Fund, the purpose being one of public service and of working with a Malian actor from the banking sector to seek to develop products that facilitate access to adapted housing for as many people as possible


Environment and Climate: From the start of the 2014–2015 season, AVN has supported negotiators in West African countries in preparing their respective commitments for the Paris Agreements, set out in the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs). Thanks to those efforts, this work led to Mali highlighting the benefits of NVs in its Strategic Framework for Economic Recovery and Sustainable Development (CREDD).

Employment, vocational training and youth integration:

  • Meetings with the FAFPA, with the Ministry for Employment, Youth and Vocational Training and with the Vocational Training Centres from Missabougou, Nioro and Tominian
  • Projects with the Ministry for Vocational Training, financed by the World Bank, being set up (Skills Development and Youth Employment Project, PROCEJ; Sikasso region); projects to come with Swisscontact (Vocational Training Support Programme, PAFP; Ségou region)



annual report 2015-16

annual report 2014-15