project leader
Aziza K
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Thank You!

the project


Our project aims to educate and empower Detroiters toward self-sufficiency, interdependence and sovereignty.  We seek to create “a future shaped by care for land, water, and people to which we belong.” 


Our vision for this project includes 1) Building a prototype of a mud-and-strawbale tiny house at Feedom Freedom Growers in the Jefferson-Chalmers district, 2) Offering a workshop series that will train and empower participants in natural mud-and-strawbale building with the hope that others will be able to start their own buildings 3)  Participating in the Afro Future Youth exhibit by creating a hands-on presentation of the accessibility, potential and possibility of natural building. 


We are a collective of passionate humans who believe that the solutions to many of our pressing problems can be found in our own backyards.  We are a diverse group of  builders, healers, growers, artists, activists, writers, who dream of a future in which residents have full access to the materials and skills to build their own dwellings in a way that uplifts the community and enriches the environment.  We center healing, interdependence, and sustainability in our lives and believe in the transformative possibilities through environmentally-conscious natural building.

the steps

  1. Ongoing: gathering of locally-sourced resources and materials.
  2. July 2023: foundation building and preparation for workshops
  3. August - Sept 2023 : Builders Workshop I /Initiate construction of studio structure. 
  4. October- Nov 2023: Builders Workshop  II/ Finalize construction of studio structure, 
  5. December 2023: Finalization of project. 

why we're doing it

Everyone knows that housing in Detroit is a major issue.  From unaffordable rents, prohibitively expensive heating bills, housing discrimination, tax foreclosures, deteriorating roofs and structures, health problems from mold and lead, flooding basements, housing is intimately connected to the many struggles residents face.  We believe reimagining housing through natural building can address the social, economic and environmental problems we are facing.    

Socially, natural building promotes inter-connectivity in these times or intense isolation.  In conventional building, labor is contracted out and is highly specialized, leading to the need for large sums of upfront capital.  Our project allows for like-minded solutionaries to build and educate together, as the primary tools for the natural build are our hands and feet, and anyone is able to participate. By working collaboratively, strawbale buildings promote unity and communal self-sufficiency rather than the depersonalized exchange of money. Natural buildings also bridge the connection between city-dwellers and nature, reminding people that even when we are alone, we are supported by the land.

Economically, natural building will lead to a more equitable future for Detroiters.  Detroiters face many of the same challenges in obtaining fair, equitable, affordable housing and land as many people across the country. Discrimination in housing sometimes forces people to live in unsafe, unsanitary conditions.  Housing is a human right.  However, dependence on a system that is failing the people is not the solution.  We believe in nature's model of small scale, decentralized, regenerative possibilities to housing.  By educating and training others in how to access and harvest local resources, and use creative skills and knowledge to build their own structures, composting toilets or simple storage facilities, we are depending on ourselves, our community and our land, not on a discriminatory system. 

Environmentally, natural building invites us to think about new ways to walk and chill on this earth, and use our resources in a more conscientious way. The climate chaos we are experiencing stems from the colonial view of humans separate from nature; nature as something separate and out there, and in the worst case, nature as something to control and tame.  The earth is a home, and we aren’t going to mars, and natural building is the soft commitment to treating the earth as our home.  It reminds us that the earth provides everything we need, from wood to straw to mud to stone, and that by sharing knowledge, tools and skills we can live abundantly on this earth. 

This project is a tiny step.  Yet, by fundamentally shifting our view of the land and community we believe different futures will be born. We want to see a future of  thriving where both the people and the planet is nurtured and cared for


Materials: $5,000

Skilled labor/workshop facilitation fee: $4000

Food for workshop participants: $500

Miscellaneous: $500


ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee 8% N/A
ioby Donation Processing Fee 4% $208.25
TOTAL TO RAISE $10,208.25
Donation processing fees apply to donations only. 100% of match funding goes to projects. Please note, fees are estimated here and final numbers may change based on the final amount raised and amount of match funding applied to this campaign.


TOTAL RAISED $10,334.00
ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee 8% N/A
ioby Donation Processing Fee 4% $216.68


Thank You!

We are now fully funded, and excited to say that we will be moving forward into Phase 1 of our project, which includes site-planning, and organizing volunteer and workshop days. We could not have done this without your generous donations, and are so very grateful to have had your support! 

Thank you!

Huge thanks to everyone who has contributed to our campaign so far. We appreciate all the love, support, donations and you spreading the word about our exciting new project. We are happy to say that we are able to extend the deadline, allowing folks a couple more weeks to share and support. You are appreciated! 


This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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