Within Lakota culture, there is a prophecy known as the Prayer of 7 Generations. The prayer was offered by Chief Red Cloud in the hope that his 7th generation descendants would meld the good of the Lakota people with the good of European descendants and together we would walk a new path in harmony with our world. Today, the 7th generation walks the earth.
The shape of our symbol has meaning in Lakota culture. The dome is the shape of the Lakota sweat lodge, a place of prayer, healing, and community. The circle is also the symbol of life. Our symbol is the shape of the homes we produce. On the western side, in the mathematical field of set theory, ∩ represents what can be described as togetherness — it encompasses the parts of two different sets that are the same.
In keeping with the Prayer of 7 Generations, our symbol represents healing and unity. Our homes draw both from the spirit of the Lakota culture and design and the benefits of Western technology. We draw meaning from both to work together to forge a new path.
Our mission is to leverage our building technique to support those in need by providing warmth, stability, economic opportunity, and hope.
A home is so much more than its physical manifestation in the world. It is a place of togetherness, of gathering, of sharing, and of connecting. It is also an opportunity. The act of building a home can be an enriching educational experience. In building a home people gain vocational skills, create art, forge friendships, and find meaning.
We take our first steps toward fulfilling our mission on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. In building homes with this community, we will hire and train local workers and crafters. We will purchase local products. We will commission local artists. We will source local materials. With our partners at Red Cloud Renewable, we will develop local manufacturing and produce the components we require and we will mentor the creation of local Lakota owned businesses. In doing so, we help to make the community as resilient as the structures we build together.
Aaron graduated Cum Laude from Amherst College with degrees in both Bio-Chemistry/Bio-Physics and Planetary Science and comes from a background of community service as a paramedic. He is a published co-author in the journal Nature, and has worked with NASA and SwRI in support of the New Horizons mission. He is an experienced blacksmith and carpenter. He’s passionate about egalitarianism and unleashing the tools of the 21st century to solve some of our most pressing problems, and to do it in a way that connects people, builds communities, and empowers us all to live the change we seek.
Jason graduated Cum Laude from Amherst College with degrees in both Environmental Studies and Geology. He has worked with NASA and SwRI in support of the New Horizons mission, and has decades of experience in the construction industry prior to his time in Academia. Passionate about planetary science, sustainable development, social justice, economics, and all things living, he strives to find innovative solutions to some of our world’s most pressing systematic problems.
Crispy is a journeyman electrician, NABCEP certified solar installer, former professor of renewable energy, chief judge in the United States for freestyle skiing, and has experience as general manager of solar installations up-to-and-including MegaWatt scale systems. He’s passionate about creating opportunities to train students of all ages on the ins-and-outs of solar installations, and using that medium to make STEM education exciting and fun.
Candy is an interior architectural designer, ceramic artist, professional seamstress and
carpenter with a love of travel and adventure. During her long career she installed many
original ceramic murals in homes around the country, owned the Color Wheel, a paint
your own pottery business which later expanded into the Ceramics@Sea program for
Princess Cruise Lines, taught workshops around the world and created a one woman
show for Jenggala Keramik in Bali. She is passionate about merging beauty and functionality resulting in homes that are not only efficient but aesthetically pleasing. She hopes to inspire that same pride of place in others.
Leo is a member of the Shoshone Bannock Tribe. Leo has worked with InOurHands since they first arrived on Pine Ridge in 2018. His dream is to work with InOurHands to implement the vision of providing homes to Native Tribes across the country. Ultimately Leo aspires to to own his own business working to build domes and train others to do so around the world.
Rez was born on the Pine Ridge Reservation. She now works with the InOurHands team to ensure spirits remain high. She specializes in security, and the removal of edible scraps.
Our vision is that one day our homes will be found all over the world. We aim to provide stability, skills, and opportunity to marginalized communities, but we also aim to make a significant positive environmental impact.
The extreme efficiency of the homes we build greatly reduces or eliminates the energy required for heating and cooling. Likewise, the comfort and dignity provided by having a home supports the community’s ability to engage in civic action, so they can be stewards of their land.
To make such an impact, our vision must always be to work ourselves out of a job. That means providing the community with all of the skills and infrastructure required to carry the ball forward themselves. It means helping them obtain financing, building businesses, employing artists and workers, and begin growing opportunities themselves.
In this way we can move from community to community, expanding the circle until that circle encompasses us all.
We will plant the seeds and nurture them, until the plants can nourish themselves.
The homes we build are not only beautiful, they are also unbelievably resilient. They are constructed from cellular concrete, a substance which is simultaneously insulating and structurally sound. This eliminates most if not all of the requirement for heating and cooling. In cold climates, the simple act of having the heat from five human bodies within one of our homes can be the difference between life and death. They are: