We are very excited about our nomination by ETV as a South African Hero.  We are forever grateful our donors and sponsors, and to the people who believe in this project.  With more support we can do more – restoring the human dignity of people living in dilapidated shacks and squalor conditions in Informal Settlements in South Africa.

Quinton Adams has been building informal houses in Freedom Farm, Cape Town for 15 years.  Quinton has made it his mission to restore the dignity of people, especially children living in informal settlements, by building them decent homes.

“By building something decent for people not only restores their dignity but also gives them a chance to rebuild their lives.  As an educational psychologist I was taken aback when I saw the truly bad conditions that children in informal settlements live in.

These children and youth live in extreme poverty and conditions where there is violence.  This stunts their growth and they do not reach their full potential.  They cannot study if there is no food and electricity.  In winter the weather conditions are worse because their homes are flooded and it leads to illnesses such as tuberculosis”

Quinton Adams, The Shackbuilder


  • People living in dilapidated shacks and in squalor conditions are getting sick and they are dying due to the health risks of these structures.
  • The squalor conditions strangle the potential of people living in these appalling circumstances.
  • These squalor conditions are inhumane and cruel and break down the human spirit of people.
  • In some of these shacks we found rat droppings, rat urine and even dead rats that can lead to rodent borne disease.
  • Some shacks have no windows, and some have windows that can’t open, which leads to stale air, smell, mold and mildew in the shacks.
  • These different odors become a breeding ground for tuberculosis due to a lack of airflow.
  • The shacks are also built with waste material and flammable material which can easily contribute to the increase of shack fires.


To create a world without dilapidated shacks, and restore human dignity for people living in Shacks in Informal Settlements.


To build healthier, safer, solid shack structures and to improve the living conditions of people living in Informal Settlements.


  • We are building a 9 square meter room

  • We are building different sizes depending on the size of the family: three-, four- or six room structure

  • We build with new corrugated iron and 3m timber poles

  • The roof has a fall to help with the flow of the water

  • Underneath the roof we place Durafoil to help with the regulation of the temperature

  • Each room has two or three good second hand wooden windows, which increases the airflow

  • We put in a cement floor


  • We have built 12 new Shacks within a year

  • The Shackbuilders are unemployed young men and women from the Informal Settlement

  • We have rolled out the Solar Lamps and Fire Extinguishers

  • We have been on different media platforms such as newspapers, magazines, national radio and television (Kyknet, SABC 2, ETV, ENCA)

  • We have received the ETV South African Hero Nomination

  • We are working with international and multi-national companies to address the issue of shack fires

  • We are drawing research students from across the globe who want do internship training


As long as poverty, injustice & inequality persist, none of us can truly rest.  It doesn’t take much to change a life.  Get in touch today and start making the difference.