Press Release: Thinking Huts, an innovator in humanitarian-driven technology for education, has announced their inaugural Building Minds Project to manufacture a 3D printed school in the Southeastern Anosy region of Madagascar. This pilot brings together the latest technological innovations in 3D construction and NGO partnerships to provide quality education infrastructure faster, at a lower cost, and with decreased waste.
Thinking Huts is creating innovative solutions to address education infrastructure issues of insufficient space to accommodate students in developing countries. Overcrowding due to a lack of classroom infrastructure is a barrier to quality education and limits the opportunities for children. According to UNESCO, over 260 million children do not have access to education. In Madagascar, 60% of the 1.3 million primary-age students are not enrolled in school due to overcrowding and insufficient investment in education infrastructure.1
The Building Minds Projects develop and deploy “Thinking Huts”— 3D printed schools for safe, sustainable learning spaces. To establish the necessary local community partnerships for the Madagascar pilot, Thinking Huts is partnering with locally-based nonprofit, SEED, in the Southeastern Anosy region. Thinking Huts is currently finalizing the architectural scale 3D printer partner to supply the equipment, materials, and technology to implement the Thinking Hut design.
“There is an opportunity for us to combine technology with humanitarian-driven goals. I envision a future where we close the global opportunity gap,” said Maggie Grout, Founder of Thinking Huts. “Education is at the root of tackling many problems the world faces today such as inequality, health epidemics, and economic growth. In order to cross the frontier, we must embrace innovation.”
Aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 4 & 9 (Quality Education, Industrial Innovation & Infrastructure), Thinking Hut structures will utilize high-tech and traditional construction methods. School walls will be built from the ground up as the printer extrudes concrete layers – decreasing construction time from months to days. The roof, doors, and additional structures will use locally sourced materials. To view an animation of a Thinking Hut 3D construction process, please view the animation on the Thinking Huts website.
Thinking Huts is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that envisions increasing access to education via 3D printed schools. The goal is to solve overcrowding by providing physical education infrastructure. Using a technology-based solution, Thinking Huts seeks to encourage innovation and support education in emerging economies where research and development initiatives do not receive funding. Seeking to combine the potential of technology with humanitarian-driven goals, Thinking Huts is on a mission to close the global opportunity gap.
Founded in 2015 by Maggie Grout, a young, female entrepreneur, Thinking Huts aims to disrupt the school construction industry with 3D printing in developing countries. Maggie’s passion to increase access to education began 5 years ago during her sophomore year in high school. Influenced by her origins as an adoptee from China, she hopes to create opportunities for those born into underprivileged communities.
Thinking Huts is currently seeking corporate and individual contributions, as well as volunteers with an interest in education or technology to help achieve its ambitious goals.
For more information about Maggie and Thinking Huts, please visit http://www.thinkinghuts.org.
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1 D’Hoore, A., and Sulla, V., 2014. Face Of Poverty In Madagascar: Poverty, Gender, And Inequality Assessment.