The CEO of Hilti Corporation visits the Construya project in Peru 

Upskilling and reskilling
11.02.2022
In January, Christoph Loos, CEO of Hilti – a multinational manufacturing company – visited the city of Lima and the Construya project, financed by the Hilti Foundation and implemented by Swisscontact. He got to learn about the challenges of housing construction in Peru and the work done by the project to sensitise master builders and homeowners to good construction practices.

Peru is very prone to earthquakes and many houses in risk areas do not comply with the most basic construction requirements. This places those people living in densely populated and poor neighbourhoods at high risk.

Christoph Loos learned about the work of master builders in the district of Villa El Salvador.

During his stay, Hilti’s CEO visited the district of Villa El Salvador, south of the capital Lima. Here he learned first hand about the construction process and the so-called progressive construction method – a common method used in Peru and fraught with considerable risks, for it involves building a house in stages over a period of many years. He met with project beneficiaries, including homeowners and master builders, who reaffirmed the project’s positive impact of the project on their lives. During this field visit, Mr Loos spoke with some of the homeowners who participated in the safe construction awareness campaigns promoted by the project. Marcela Atanacio was one of them; the homeowner shared what she learned from the awareness activity that took place in her area and told her story about building her home progressively over time.

Hilti's CEO spoke with homeowners to learn firsthand about the progressive construction method typical of Peru, according to which a house is built in stages over several years.
"Thanks to the training, I realised that in my house a column was peeling and that there was something wrong. We then determined that the ironwork on a column was corroded. Knowing where I live made me think that a seismic movement could cause my house to suffer damage if we don't repair and reinforce the columns."
Marcela Atanacio, homeowner, Villa El Salvador   

Testimonial Video: Javier Abad Zapata, homeowner in Villa El Salvador

Qualified builders thanks to practical training

In order for homeowners to be able to draw on qualified builders and reliable construction services, the project helps train builders in safe construction. The training teaches participating master builders about good construction practices via the learning by doing approach in practical exercises. The master builders emphasize the importance of training to improve their work.

The exchange between the delegation from Switzerland and project beneficiaries took place during such a training event. In this way, Hilti CEO, Christoph Loos, gained a good understanding of the Hilti Foundation’s role in the region, and he was able to verify the positive impact the Construya project has had.  

Demonstration of the training courses carried out for the builders
"As a socially responsible company, we have an obligation to impart values and actively explore solutions to pressing social problems. Construya is a great example of our approach to creating sustainable impact over time. We are establishing a network of public and private organizations for the training of construction workers in informal environments by providing fundamental information and construction practices and thus improving living conditions and empowering people to lead an independent life."
Christoph Loos, CEO, Hilti Group  

This project is financed by the Hilti Foundation. It is part of the Swisscontact Development Programme, which is co-financed by the SDC (Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation) within the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA).

Peru
Upskilling and reskilling
Peru: Promotion of Safe, Sound and Sustainable Construction Practices in Vulnerable Urban Areas (Construya)
Accelerated urbanization, a lack of urban planning and a significant housing deficit have generated an increasing number of informal dwellings. It is estimated that 500,000 homes and more than 700,000 people in Lima live in conditions that place them at high-risk of earthquakes and tsunamis, making Peru one of the countries most likely to...