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January 2024    Award -Winning Unique Design:
RSK shelter kits provided to families displaced by earthquake in Nepal

Kushe  January 2024 

Assembly of the first shelter kit that includes a complete bamboo frame

A trained RSK response team built  RSK shelters
for over 150 people displaced by the Jajarkot earthquake 

Standard RSK with the front awning open during the day is here providing a useful covered cooking area.

Nalgad December 2023 

When the team arrived in these remote rural communities 
many families were still living in very poorly  built shelters 

Nalgad December 2023 


Nalgad December 2023 

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Kushe  January 2024 

The main problem is building the roof of their shelter.

After working with the trained RSK team
these families were empowered to build their own RSK  shelters. 

Community members take part in demonstrating that 4 bamboo poles overlapped in turn make a "self-supporting " reciprocal frame.


Next they lashed this reciprocal frame on top of 4 side poles to complete their shelter roof.

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This shelter is being located next to the recipients' collapsed house.


Next they placed this reciprocal frame on the ground and lashed it together. 

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The complete roof frame was then carried to their shelter site. 


Digging the holes for the support posts.


Next they lifted their roof frame onto 4 support posts.

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After lashing the roof to the support posts their RSK shelter frame is complete.

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Positioning the first of the side tarpaulins.


Attaching the second side tarpaulin to the shelter frame.


Attaching the roof tarpaulin.


Inside the Standard RSK shelter sleeping area

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Front awning open during day

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Front awning closed at night

     Special feature of the RSK used by the families:
     1. Building the roof frame on the ground 

This unique feature empowers all the family, young and old, to assist in building the roof instead of having to build it overhead.

Special feature of the RSK used by the families: 
2.  One tool to make the kit and one simple skill to assemble it.

Only a saw or machete are required to make an RSK shelter.

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All the family can use simple cross lashing skills to assemble their shelter

                     Special feature of the RSK used by the families: 
                     3. Using only complete bamboo poles, no split bamboo.

Using a simple baton to align the roof frame. A stronger and safer load-bearing structure with a reduced fire risk

Special feature of the RSK used by the families : 
4.  A new concept roof that uses  "traditional" build methods to support it.
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The RSK frame assembly uses traditional methods that will be familiar to the community.

     Special feature of the RSK used by the families : 
     5. The RSK roof has 4 simple but strong attachment points for the top  tarpaulin.
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The tarpaulin is "bunched" and secured around the 4 corners of the RSK roof frame.

Special feature of the RSK used by the families:
6. The team built multiple roof frames and stacked them on the ground.

Families could collect their roof frame and carry it to their build site .

This mass production of roof frames has important implications for large scale disasters.

In Nalgad the team cut the green bamboo
that they needed every morning
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Cutting green bamboo


No bamboo is wasted. Even bent bamboo can be used for the side poles


 Green bamboo works for RSK shelter frames when dried bamboo is not available

In Kushe dried bamboo was brought in by truck.
RSK shelters use 33% less bamboo than any equivalent shelters resulting in considerable savings in transportation costs.
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Transferring bamboo from the team truck to the community tractor.

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The RSK roof uses only two different lengths of bamboo making it a highly  efficient use of bamboo.

Versatility of RSK shelters
The bamboo poles are interchangeable between all 4 types of RSK shelter






All RSKs use the same roof frame. The team could have built any of these shelters on arrival in Jajarkot had they been required.


This smaller version of the free-standing Urban RSK was built by the team to sleep in whilst in Kushe.  

Versatility of RSK shelters
In Kushe the Standard RSK shelters were adapted to the cold and exposed location
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This RSK shelter was built with a slightly smaller frame, lower roof height and a greater roof incline.

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If the community had been above the snow line we would have further increased the incline of the load-bearing roof.

Versatility of RSK shelters
The kits are easily carried and adaptable to different situations
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A family carried their complete RSK roof frame to this final site.

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This ability to remain close to their dwelling or land is  important to families.

Versatility of RSK shelters
Simple to repair, maintain and upgrade
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This family has built a more substantial covered  area on the front of their shelter.


Maintaining the RSK is straightforward and this empowers recipients to work on their personal shelter.

Final checks, answering questions and giving advice
before the RSK team depart
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An opportunity to ensure community links are in place.

                                          LATEST DEVELOPMENT
Just before this Jajarkot deployment, on 25th November 2023 we tested the latest RSK shelter design in training in Sarlahi, Nepal
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This Urban RSK modification is particularly designed for earthquake victims and is free-standing on asphalt and concrete. It's strength, stability and living space exceeded our expectations and we are now looking forward to further field testing.

                        Sphere Standards
The RSK shelter aims to meet Sphere humanitarian standards in design, planning and emergency response 
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