What is Earthen Flooring?
Earthen Floors are made by compressing different layers of natural materials tightly down, and sealing it off to make it waterproof using a layer of oil. Earthen floors are becoming more and more popular, especially on the West Coast of the United States, because they are natural, great for the environment, easy to clean and maintain and can be truly gorgeous, helping to transform a home.
Why couldn’t these floors come to Rwanda to replace dirt for those who need it most?
Using techniques to refine, separate and utilize the dirt already in Rwanda means that these floors can be produced cheaply and at scale. Across the world, earthen floors utilize locally-sourced clay, sand, fiber and plant oils. However, earthen floors in the United States and Europe typically use a linseed oil sealant, which is incredibly expensive. In order to bring affordable earthen floors to Rwanda, the team at EarthEnable had to innovate.
With the help of chemistry PhD Rick Zuzow from Stanford University, a new oil was created which could seal the floors properly and safely at a cost of 90% less than linseed oil. With the new oil in hand, these floors became extremely affordable and our mission to eliminate dirt floors in Rwanda more achievable than ever.