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The Nubian Vault Association receives the World Habitat Awards in Nairobi

The award ceremony for the World Habitat Awards took place on Monday May 8th in Nairobi, at 26th plenary opening session of the Governing Council of UN-Habitat. During the entire week, this biennal meeting brings together representatives of member states for the implementation of the new Urban Agenda, in accordance with the Sustainable Development Objectives and the Paris Climate Agreement.

After the presentation of the laureates by David Ireland, Director of the Building and Social Housing Foundation (BSHF), Joan Clos, UN Deputy Secretary General and Executive Director of UN-Habitat presented the trophy to Cécilia Rinaudo, AVN Deputy Director, for the programme « A Roof, A Skill, A Market» carried out by the Association in 5 West African countries over the last 17 years.

In his speech, Joan Clos emphasised that «affordable housing presents a tremendous challenge worldwide: in both developing and developed world, housing is unaffordable». The other Award winner, the programme of Swiss cooperatives for eco-housing « More than housing » was also recognised and praised during the ceremony.

In the afternoon, during an event organised by BSHF, Cécilia Rinaudo presented the AVN programme, stressing that the long-term evolution of appropriate construction practices in Africa is only achievable if it takes on board the challenges faced by the populations concerned: decent housing, ’green’ employment, adaptation to and attenuation of climate change, economic independence etc. Christophe Lalande, Leader, Housing Unit, emphasised the support of UN-Habitat for AVN’s programme as a major solution for access to affordable and sustainable housing for the many.

In the light of this global development vision, AVN is working with its partners in West Africa as a major operator promoting appropriate housing through the large scale transfer and replication of its programme by all concerned stakeholders. This also involves the promotion of the Nubian Vault concept in other countries in the region by organisations accompanied and supported by AVN, helped by the BSHF Peer Exchange Programme, which encourages the dissemination of innovatory practices and the transfer of skills and experience.