Vernacular homes in the rural village of Devgain, Jharkhand, India display the deep connection that villagers have with the surrounding environment. Homes are constructed using local, natural (and mostly free) resources. The traditional form of housing consists of mud walls, clay roof tiles, and timber frames. This design responds effectively to the hot, tropical climate.However, homes face rapid deterioration from erosion each rainy season, along with other issues of water and property damage –leading to frequent, time-consuming, and labor-intensive maintenance –which, if neglected, can cause greater issues of health and safety. Changing climatic conditions and ambivalent weather patterns have exacerbated these conditions, and residents cannot keep up. About 90% of families sustain themselves through agriculture -many being subsist farmers. Yields have dropped at alarming rates due to the rapidly changing climatic conditions. Recurring heavy losses leave farmers under mounting debt.
Initiatives to relieve housing needs have relied on prototypical concrete or brick constructions. Although a quick-fix solution, these are not affordable materials to residents not receiving funding. They also cause harmful environmental impacts, lack cultural influence, and results in homes with unlivable interior conditions during hot months.