Roofing Out of Poverty

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India is experiencing rapid migration from rural areas to cities. Rampant urbanization in India has caused the proliferation of slums and increased demand for adequate housing. Among many of the physically and socially deteriorated living conditions that characterize life in the slums, housing with poor structural quality is one of the major limiting factors in the advancement of socio-economic growth. A functional roof is a basic and essential component of shelter for a family, but poor house planning and a lack of resources results in inadequate and unsafe roofs for families. After surveying 15 low-income households in a slum in Ahmedabad, India, this team got direct feedback from the field that helped them identify the top current roofing problems: extremely hot indoor temperatures, high roof maintenance costs, leaks during monsoon season, and the presence of asbestos. Roofing Out of Poverty’s challenge is to design an affordable and reliable roof that not only addresses these top priorities, but is modular, fits within a financially viable business model, and improves the safety and quality of living of low-income home dwellers. Their product will fill the market gap between inexpensive, low-quality roofing options and cost-prohibitive concrete slab roofs.