After working on the bridge design, raising the necessary funds, and learning about the culture and language
during the school year,
we bring our design to reality over the summer for 8 weeks.
During the summer of 2022, 5 students from our team stayed with bridge corps, university supervisors, and masons to built a 100m pedestrian footbridge with the community that they have spent the last two semesters designing.
Over the past year, 17 people,
many of which were young children, have died while attempting to cross the Ngwempisi River to go to schools or
neighboring communities for staple household goods. In response to these tragedies, the community reached out
to Engineers in Action for help in building a bridge.
During the summer of 2019, 7 students from our team lived and worked alongside the community of Mdlasomi in the Kingdom of eSwatini to build a 95 meter suspended cable bridge they have spent the last two semesters designing.
In the summer of 2017, two students traveled to Southern Africa for two weeks to survey potential bridge sites and meet with community members to assess their need. In Kontshingila, Swaziland, 350 people cross the Moneni river to go to school, work, and the markets in larger towns. While the river remains passable for the majority of the year, for three months during the rainy season the river swells and bars the community from crossing safely. In the last three years, more than six people, some children, in a relatively small community have died crossing to go to school and to get essential supplies. In the summer of 2018, for two months, we built a 70 meter span bridge and changed the landscape of Kontshingila and Nhletjeni. The bridge will provide greater opportunities for the community memebers and has greatly impacted both us and the community.
In the summers of 2014 and 2015, Cornell University students completed two assessment trips with the goal of building a bridge in Calcha, Bolivia. In the summer of 2016, for two months we built a 50-meter span footbridge (seen below). Our bridge impacted the lives of over 200 people and increased access to farmland by 80%. It was such a motivating experience and the impact on the community was truly life-changing.