Bamboo Housing Program


One of the most critical needs in La Ladrillera is housing.  FLF has designed a two bedroom house that has a concrete foundation, a bamboo structure, and a metal roof.  The house provides shelter, electricity and plumbing - but is open air for ventilation.  The house comes with an indoor or outdoor stove that uses one third of the wood of a regular fire, and avoids health risks of smoke inhalation and burns that are common to the area. Local labor is used to build the home and all building materials are sourced locally, as bamboo is a staple commodity throughout Guatemala.

Here is how the program works: 

  • Families needing a home submit an application to our team leader in La Ladrillera, Francisco Chay Garcia (whom we call Don Chico). Don Chico is the head of security for the town La Ladrillera and a respected town leader.

  • Don Chico recommends a family to FLF for a house based on their need and their ability to pay back a no-interest loan.  The cost of a house is $5,000.  FLF grants $2500, and loans the family the remaining $2500.  The family pays the $2500 loan back over 10 years with no interest. All payments are then used to fund other needs in the village or provide another family an opportunity to purchase their own bamboo home.

  • Once a family is selected for a home, FLF contacts home-builder Nicolas Yax and his crew of local residents to begin construction. This program not only provide housing, it employs workers in the community.

  • FLF also “gifts” homes to families whose ability to support their families has been compromised due to injury, illness or death. We recently completed our third "gifted" home in La Ladrillera, thanks to generous American corporate donors.