Sovereign Military Hospitaller
Order of St John of Jerusalem of
Rhodes and of Malta


Environmentally friendly school inaugurated in the Rhino refugee camp in Northern Uganda

Environmentally friendly school inaugurated in the Rhino refugee camp in Northern Uganda

The worldwide relief agency of the Order of Malta, Malteser International, has opened a new high school building in the Rhino Camp refugee settlement in northern Uganda. “The innovative and CO2-neutral manufacturing process with construction panels made of rice straw protects the environment. It allows rice farmers in the surrounding area to participate in an additional value chain and creates jobs in the construction industry, especially for the fugitives from South Sudan,” says Roland Hansen, Head of the Africa Department of Malteser International. The Grand Hospitaller of the Order of Malta Dominique de La Rochefoucauld-Montbel attended the opening ceremony of the new school building, in late September.

Sale of rice straw offers rice farmers new source of income. Rice straw, which was previously burnt as an agricultural waste product on the fields in Uganda, is used as raw material for the construction of the panels in the new production method and purchased from local farmers as part of the value chain. Rice straw panels are suitable for numerous construction applications.

The three-classroom structure, which was built in close cooperation with the Impact Building Solutions Foundation (IBSF), can accommodated up to 600 pupils: most of them are young refugees from South Sudan who live in the in the Rhino refugee settlement.

Malteser International has been working for many years in the region providing a better supply of clean drinking water for refugees and local people alike. It also implements hygiene measures to reduce the spread of diseases and provides medical care and assistance to young women.