Networking Natural Builders Worldwide

Builders Without Borders
is an international network of ecological builders who advocate the use of straw, earth and other local, affordable materials in construction.
We believe that the solution to homelessness is not merely housing, but individuals and communities trained to house themselves.To this end, we organize and promote hands-on workshops and learning events, create educational books, CD-ROMs and videos. and partner with other organizations to build affordable sustainable housing. Since our inception in 1999, we have organized and supported projects from Mexico, to Israel, South Africa, Siberia, and Mongolia, and Native American land… (read more)
Upcoming Events

2023 STRAWBALE AND PLASTERING WORKSHOPS: April 28th-30th & May 5th-7th in Kingston, New Mexico

Apply for the 2023 Strawbale and Plastering Workshops

Builders Without Borders is excited to welcome participants to our newest project: The Percha Creek Homestead. Located in Kingston, New Mexico on the edge of the Gila National Forest, this permaculture site will one day feature a flourishing community garden, an innovation center, educational spaces, a community kitchen, and a strawbale caretakers cottage.

As we develop this site, we invite those interested in learning more about natural building to our homestead to work with natural building experts. Participants will have classroom and hands-on building experiences in this two-weekend course and come away with a working understanding of general design, materials, strawbale construction, and plastering. The first weekend will focus on materials and construction, while the second will focus on plastering.  


Frank Meyer, Kaki Hunter, Doni Kiffmeyer, Steve Kemble, Matts Myhrmann, Derek Roff, Gary Harvell, and Catherine Wanek.


Per weekend: $295 ($490/couple) Per both weekends: $490

Meals included. B&B (additional cost) and free camping available. Limited number of scholarships and work trades available.

The BWB Strawbale

Created for a summer 2008 exhibition in Washington D.C. the Builders Without Borders’ Straw-bale Eco-house remained at the U.S. Botanic Garden (USBG) on the National Mall, through the fall and winter. In March 2009, the building was lifted with a crane and lowered onto a waiting trailer, which transported it to a location in nearby Maryland.

See the BWB Ecohouse video on YouTube

Read more about the BWB Ecohouse

The BWB Ecohouse has become part of a Breathwork Healing Center in Upper Marlboro,Maryland.
See up-to-date photos at:

Educational Resources Fund Builders Without Borders created a Strawbale Construction Curriculum, and donates this training manual, plus other books and videos, to worthy people and projects, and offers scholarships to BWB workshops for dedicated students.Free consultation and educational materials have been provided to Navajo, Hopi, and Lakota tribes, as well as projects in Mexico, Mongolia, China, South Africa, Argentina, and Siberia. To help us continue this educational outreach, you can earmark a Donation to the BWB Educational Resources Fund.Builders Without Borders is a project of NetWorks Productions, Inc., a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Your donations are tax-deductible.

BWB members designed and led the hands-on construction of two
straw-bale demonstration buildings in the Altai region of southern Siberia. Read more.

Sustainable Rebuilding In Post-Earthquake Nepal

BWB’s team is actively promoting safe, affordable rebuilding in rural Nepal.

BWB has developed partnerships with Nepali institutions, other NGOs and Nepali communities, and has completed model sustainable building plans that utilize straw, earth, bamboo and other local materials.

The Nepali people are ready to rebuild. For more information, and how you can help see our latest newsletter.

BWB Field Report #1
BWB Field Report #2
House Design for Gov’t of Nepal
House Design for NEA Competition
Report for NEA Competition

BWB's Strawbale House Design for Nepal
BWB’s Strawbale House Design for Nepal
Shake-table tested, highly insulating straw bale wall system with bamboo trusses.
Shake-table tested, highly insulating straw bale wall system with bamboo trusses.
first straw bale in Nepal
BWB’s first bales in Nepal. Made locally from rice straw.

Sustainable Rebuilding Solutions for Haiti:

Internet & Community Center:

BWB has partnered with Help Hayti for the design of an Internet & Community Center for the rural community of Terre Froide. It will use local materials (stone, bamboo, earth plasters) and feature photovoltaic and rainwater catchment systems. It is seen as a prototype for other rural communities in Haiti.


Design Drawings

Ti Kay Pay:

Builders Without Borders’ Haiti team, led by architect Martin Hammer and builder Andy Mueller, completed its first project in March 2011 in Port-au-Prince. BWB’s Ti Kay Pay (Small Straw House) is the first straw bale building in Haiti.


Project Overview
Design Drawings

Peace Corps Magazine Article
Project Progress Blog
Contact BWB-Haiti

Project Photo Gallery


Senp Kay:

GreenSpace Collaborative in partnership with Builders Without Borders’ Haiti team completed its second alternative structure in Port-au-Prince in February 2012.

The Senp Kay (Simple House) utilizes prefabricated, tilt-up, plastic bottle panels and light straw-clay walls. This modular wall design incorporates the structural integrity and efficiency of the tilt-up panel, the creative repurposing of plastic bottles, and the simplicity of light straw-clay infill.

Project Overview
Design Drawings

Contact GreenSpace Collaborative

Project Photo Gallery