00 Structure of Training for Masons and Carpenters on MTS Construction at HESCO
Structure of Mid Term Shelter Home


The training programme beginning at HESCO headquarters from September 15, 2013 is aimed to

  • Demonstrate construction of Mid-term shelter having load-bearing walls of Un-course Rubble Masonry, with CGI sheet pitched roof supported on Timber understructure
  • Train masons and carpenters so that they are able to build this shelter elsewhere and also train other artisans to build the same
  • Teams of trained artisans – masons and carpenters – are able to build similar structures across the devastated areas of Uttarakhand, wherever they are required to do so.


Hands-on training on actual construction of one mid-term shelter with special emphasis on four different aspects. These are (a) Basic understanding of earthquake resistant features in UCR masonry, (b) Proper construction with stone in mud mortar from foundation to sill level, (c) CGI Roof installation including the timber under-structure, and (d) Training of other artisans by them.

Subsequent to this the trained artisans will be able to continue the work and construct more shelters where ever designated by the donor agencies under the guidance of local engineers/supervisors.

For Funding AGENCY

  • All the costs involved in the training programme – materials and labor will be borne by Amar Ujala Foundation (AUF).
  • All other incidental costs like lodging and boarding of trainees, their transport etc. may be borne by AUF.
  • Mason trainees will be given a “mason booklet” (made by NCPDP, AUF & HESCO) as a reference material for the future construction.
  • A pamphlet guide specifically on the construction of this mid-term shelter could be quickly put together if its need is felt for construction of shelters ahead. NCPDP could provide all the technical support for it.
  • All Building Artisans will work with their hands on all different items. So they must bring all necessary tools that they regularly use.



Ground Work:

NCPDP had suggested the following before this programme was finalized.

Based on the earlier experiences in other parts of the country the following ground-work will have to be carried out.

At the Site:

  • Identify site where this can be constructed where maximum number of people are able to visit and see the structure
  • If the site is located in the campus of an NGO, it will be beneficial, since they could be a spokesperson as desired by the programme
  • Local engineers may be invited to see the construction of this structure.
  • Deliver all necessary materials at least two days prior to the training date.
  • Soak the mud for mortar few days prior to the start of the construction. If found suitable, the soil excavated from the foundation may be used for this purpose.
  • Avoid the round stone from river at all cost. They are not suitable for construction without much dressing which calls for too much undue effort.
  • Get to the site all necessary critical infrastructures a day ahead of time.
  • Make arrangement for water at the site since mud mortar as well as cement pointing to last for at least two days of training.
  • Clear the site area and close surroundings at least one day in advance.
  • TARN-NCPDP representative will arrive at the site a day in advance to verify that the necessary preparation is done.

Selecting Building Artisans:

  • Give first preference to masons who have basic skills in stone construction. If enough are not available then bring those who have worked in brick/concrete block masonry. Do not get artisans who are mere experts on plastering, tile laying, bar bending, centering t, or RCC work.
  • Take every precaution to make sure that the construction laborers are not registered in the guise of masons.
  • Get artisan registration forms prepared to gather all the database about the participants at Dehradun also at the later five sites.
  • While registering the artisans it will be crucial to brief them in detail about where they are going, why, what they are going to be doing, what will be the future prospects for them etc. This is nothing but marketing to ensure their meaningful presence at the training program.
  • Through communication with the Building Artisans it is important to create in them the felt need for the training. The “Objectives” listed above should be clearly conveyed to them.
  • Also it is crucial to make it explicitly clear to the artisans that they must come to do work and not just to listen to the lecture, and for that they should bring along all their basic tools such as trowel, stone hammer, plumb-bob, cotton string, plastering equipment such as wood batten or aluminium channel. The carpenters must come with saw, chisel, hammer, girmit, hand-drill, pliers etc.
  • Masons will have to do all the work including mixing of mortar, giving mortar, spraying of water etc. There will not be any labourer. Hence, it is important that there are 20 masons, who will rotate with their responsibilities, and things will be in no more than three days.
  • Artisans will work in groups.
  • With nearly twenty artisans or more working, in order to get work out of them adequate supervisory personnel is necessary. Two technical individuals are needed to manage two groups. But one semi-technical person in support is needed to manage other aspects.
  • Building Artisans are not likely to bring their equipment unless specifically told to. They must be told that if they do not bring it then they will not be allowed to attend the course, nor will they be paid any stipend.

Building Artisans must be instructed beforehand that

  • what tools they should bring,
  • they should come on time,
  • they will be doing work with their hands,
  • they would receive a certificate, booklets etc.
  1. The training programme will begin with a theory class. Later the focus will be primarily on the hands-on work.
  2. Check all materials at site 24 hours prior to the training to ensure the presence of right materials.

Tasks for the Local Groups:

  • Procure the materials.
  • Identify and register the Building Artisans after necessary orientation.
  • Do the necessary on-site preparation to commence the work on the right day at the right time
  • Contact local people and NGOs, and invite them to see the work.
  • On the days of training provide non-technical support at the site.

Tasks of Rajendra and Rupal

  • To help finalize the design, material list, costing etc.
  • To prepare booklets for future use of Building Artisans. Optional
  • To bring along a models for training (desired),
  • To conduct artisan training jointly with support of technical and non-technical persons including those of the local group


  • Construction stone 5 chatta
  • Mud for mortar free from stone, large particles of sand
  • Timber as specified
  • CGI and GI sheets as specified
  • Water
  • Cement for pointing
  • Fine sand for pointing
  • 4”, 2”, and 1” wood nails with few washer
  • 14 gauge GI wire
  • 1” wide soft GI straps for timber connections

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