Nowadays, homelessness is a serious issue. Not everybody in the world is lucky to have a warm and comfortable home.
Geoffrey De Reynal, a French engineer, recently came to a great idea about helping homeless people. He created a heat-retaining igloo that can be erected to comfortably fit a person. These portable shelters are repairable, compact, recyclable, and waterproof.
They are made of polyethylene foam and aluminum foil. The double layer of the shelter prevents the freezing temperatures to affect the interiors. This means that the temperature inside the igloo is about 15° C warmer than the temperature outside.
These igloos absorb solar lighting and body temperature to naturally increase the temperature while still proving privacy.
A 2012-study carried out by the French National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies found out that more than 141.000 people were homeless all over the country. Moreover, there was also a 50% increase in the number of homeless people in France.
There are 3,000 homeless people in Paris only. When Geoffrey heard about the dangerously cold weather conditions in Paris, he decided to use his technical knowledge to solve this social problem.
When he completed his project, Geoffrey first tested the igloos and then handed them to homeless people living in the squats of Bordeaux, France. Everybody who tested an igloo refused to leave it, whereas those who could not get, wanted one. Now they have the ability to get the comfort that a real house provides them. They have both habitable climate and security. Geoffrey has achieved a two-way advantage with this design.
For now, the igloos are compact due to emergency reasons, but Geoffrey has plans to make them larger to fit showers in them. He explained that the igloos are not a permanent solution and that he’s not trying to replace emergency accommodation. Having an igloo does not mean that a person is no longer homeless.
Currently, Geoffrey’s idea is being funded as he plans to create thousands of igloos by 2020. He has already raised $20.000. He also hopes that his igloos would be available in other cold countries, such as Poland, Norway, Canada, etc.
Geoffrey has combined social responsibility, invention, and creativity and showed that if people try, they can achieve everything.