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Shaun Halbert

Founder and director of the RSK shelter program


Shaun is a veterinary surgeon with a special interest in the health and welfare of displaced families living in emergency shelter. After training as a disaster response volunteer in 2006, he was deployed to provide shelters for disasters in Asia, Africa and South America.


The RSK shelter


After the Haiti earthquake in 2010 he saw poorly built makeshift shelters collapse after heavy rains and was motivated to develop something new. Over the next 13 years, in Nepal, Myanmar, Bangladesh and UK he designed, researched, developed and field tested the Reciprocal frame Shelter Kit (RSK). The RSK is the first complete bamboo frame kit to use a unique reciprocal frame roof that has many advantages for both aid agencies and displaced families.


Special health interest


After the RSK won two international awards he used the grants to improve the health and welfare of recipients living in emergency shelters. He showed how the RSK’s improved ventilation can potentially save lives by reducing the rate of acute respiratory infection transmission in overcrowded camps, and also how the modular RSK could be used to build temporary emergency medical wards.



Today in Nepal


Over the last 3 years Shaun has worked with engineer Samir Nepal to further develop the RSK shelter program in Nepal. In December 2023 and January 2024 he deployed two trained RSK shelter teams to provide RSK shelters for families displaced by the Jajarkot earthquake. ​

​Future goals


Based on the success of these RSK deployments and feedback from the shelter recipients, Shaun is now planning to scale up the use of RSK shelters for both disaster preparedness and response in Nepal and countries with bamboo resources. 


Samir Nepal

Nepal RSK Shelter Program leader

Samir has worked as a volunteer for the RSK shelter project since April 2021. He has selected and organised all the participants for the 6 RSK training courses in Nepal over this time. He was also the chief RSK training instructor where his experience as an engineer was invaluable. 


In his role as Nepal RSK Shelter Program leader he has selected the present Nepal RSK emergency response team and overseen their advanced training and recent deployment.

Nepal RSK Shelter Response Team


Sharad Joshi

RSK Response Team Leader

Educationist and humanitarian worker.


Sharad has undergone RSK Shelter training and has used his skills to train others attending RSK training courses. He has also organised a local municipal RSK shelter building program. He is passionate about helping communities in need and providing aid for schools. His commitment and leadership during the recent deployment to Jajarkot was exemplary.


Bishnu Acharya

RSK Response  Team Member

Devoting life for human service.

Bishnu has undergone RSK Shelter training and has used his skills to train others attending RSK training courses. He has also closely participated in the local municipal RSK shelter building program.  His devotion to helping communities and his hard work and building skills have been invaluable in our emergency shelter deployments to Jajarkot. A great team member.


Laxmi Prasad Acharya

RSK Response  Team Member

 Public health student and disaster volunteer.

Laxmi has selflessly worked on all the RSK training courses , municipal programs and emergency deployments since the beginning of the RSK shelter Program in Nepal in 2021. He believes and practices the saying that "The happiest people are those who lose themselves in the service of others working for society". He is a most valuable member of the team.



Vishma Ghimire

RSK Response  Team Member

Humanitarian and volunteer helper.

The most recent member to join the RSK response team, Vishma attended his RSK training in Kathmandu. His enthusiasm, building skills and attention to detail on his first deployment to Jajarkot made him a real asset to the team.


Team Bikalpa Nepal 2012


In 2012 this young team from this local NGO and an engineer from Pakistan spent 5 days at a workshop in Kathmandu building all the different types of RSK shelter. This ground breaking work set the foundations for all future RSKs to follow. Not only did they build the first ever elevated RSK shelters but they also showed that the shelter could be built with the weaker fresh cut green bamboo in an emergency.

team Bikalpa complete the first bamboo RSK shelter workshop


Red Cross and Myanmar Shelter Cluster team

In 2016 the Myanmar Red Cross hosted three RSK workshops at which a total of 126 Red Cross volunteers, local shelter NGOs and INGO shelter staff were trained to build RSK shelters

Red Cross and Shelter Cluster staff attend RSK shelter training 2016 


35 INGO Shelter Cluster staff and 22 government engineers from Rakhine State underwent training to use RSK shelter in May 2017. At that time the intention was to provide temporary shelter for Rohingya refugees returning from Bangladesh.

UNHCR and Myanmar government engineers build RSKs in Sittwe 2017

UNHCR team set up joint RSK training.

UNHCR and Myanmar Government engineers build RSKs in Sittwe in 2017


NRC staff that attended the Sittwe course carried out emergency RSK shelter training at a further 10 IDP camps in Bhamo, Kachin State.

NRC team take their RSK training to Kachin State

NRC staff building RSKs in Kachin State in 2017


Community Development Association (CDA)  team

Members of the CDA took their RSK training to Northern Shan State and set up flood preparedness courses in commumities at risk of floods

the CDA team train villagers in Northern Shan to build RSK shelters

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