• Aja Duniven

Sammy Bear Aircrete Home Prototype

Updated: Mar 14

We are halfway finished with a small aircrete teepee prototype and plan to have it completed by fall 2019.


Our long-term goal is to build a permanent housing structure on Pine Ridge Reservation and work with the Lakota community to harness the power of sustainability while addressing the housing crisis on Pine Ridge from within the community.

Aircrete is known for being a more sustainable material than concrete that is stronger, fireproof, waterproof, insect resistant, and much lighter than concrete because it is mostly made of air.

Aircrete Teepee Prototype Update: I've spent months working on an aircrete teepee prototype with a wonderful team of volunteers who have put hundreds of hours into bringing this to life. Our team is in the middle of building the permanent teepee prototype in California with Dr. Mohsen, a well known architect that uses sacred geometry in his designs.


Pine Ridge Housing Crisis: Pine Ridge Reservation is the poorest nation int the US and was built on broken promises. It is a third world country right in the middle of North America. The Lakota people live in dire poverty and the unemployment rate is a staggering 95%. There are very few jobs on the Reservation and the majority of families are bound to the welfare system that gives them just enough to stay alive. The housing crisis on Pine Ridge is real, about 90% of families live in substandard dwellings, most of which would be considered "condemned" outside the reservation. Many families live without heat and rely on a single wood-burning stove inside dilapidated trailer homes without running water and proper plumbing.


Sustainable Housing Goal: Our long-term goal is to build a permanent housing structure on Pine Ridge Reservation and work with the Lakota community to harness the power of sustainability while addressing the housing crisis on Pine Ridge from within the community. We have been testing an innovative material called Aircrete which is often called a "building material of the future". Aircrete is known for being a more sustainable material than concrete that is stronger, fireproof, waterproof, insect resistant, and much lighter than concrete because it is mostly made of air.


Progress: We are halfway finished with a small aircrete teepee prototype and plan to have it completed by summer 2019. This gift holds a seed of great healing for the United States, symbolically offering the original wisdom keepers of Turtle Island (a name for Earth or North America used by some Indigenous people in North America). We are focused on modern eco-building techniques for a larger prototype of a 1000 sq. ft. structure that will be built on Pine Ridge Reservation.


This prototype was designed with traditional Lakota wisdom and the intention to bring solutions to the Pine Ridge housing crisis that connects tradition with the modern age. The 1000 sq ft teepee will be built on Pine Ridge Reservation with Dave Swallow, a Lakota Medicine Man, and his community. No matter how small the act begins, we believe this metaphor will be far-reaching!


UPDATE: We completed the initial 15 ft prototype in 2019. The full-sized building was put on hold during COVID and we plan to pick it back up after the production of the Ghost Dance short film.


Project Avatars: At Global Peace Train, each of our projects is represented by one or more avatars that are linked to a specific cause. The avatars are a key part of our storytelling and help make the causes we support more accessible and easier to understand. This project is represented by the Eagle and Sammy Bear Avatar.



The Eagle Avatar carries the stories of indigenous cultures in danger of dying out and gives their stories wings. Represented in the Global Peace Train logo, this avatar is all-seeing and promotes the sacred vision of preserving indigenous wisdom before it is lost. We are extremely excited to work with Dave Swallow to bring Lakota wisdom and sustainable building together.




Sammy Bear likes to call himself "homefree" instead of homeless.


He is a nomad that travels the world exploring how to solve the housing crisis. He remodels spaces, builds new homes with eco-friendly materials, creates affordable housing models, and works towards solutions to help the homeless.

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