Sra Pou Vocational School
Sra Pou vocational school is a vocational training center and community building in Sra Pou village, Cambodia, built in spring 2011. The school provides professional training, hosts sustainable businesses and is a place for public gathering and democratic decision-making for the whole community.
The project started in an Aalto university design studio in spring 2010. We travelled to Cambodia and met the local NGO Blue Tent that was working with the Sra Pou community. They had planned vocational training activities and were in need of a building for them, which would also be the first public building in the community. As we drew the first sketches, the project became so real and the construction so necessary that we ended up collecting funding for it and organizing the construction a year later. In the process, our team became part of Finnish humanitarian architecture NGO Ukumbi.
The school building is made out of local materials with local workforce. The aim was to make the most out of the materials that are easily available. As the materials are scarce, the beautiful red soil was utilized to make sundried soil blocks. The whole school is handmade, which allowed employing many people from the community and kept all techniques simple and transferable.