Find the answers to all your questions about our vision and program.

What does the EIA Bridge Program do?

We believe that the world needs globally-minded engineers. We also believe that safe access is a human right. Access is an equalizer, creating equal opportunity for all members of a community. We act on these beliefs by turning rural isolation into connection. We are a program within the larger organization of Engineers in Action and our focus is designing and constructing pedestrian footbridges. We do this by working alongside community members, university chapters, and governments to build footbridges. You can click here to learn more about what our parent organization does.

The isolated communities where we work are cut off from schools, health clinics, and markets for months out of the year. The rivers our footbridges span are perilous to cross on foot and they often become completely impassable during the rainy season. Footbridges create improved access to essential services and opportunity.

Learn more about our approach.

Where does the EIA Bridge Program work?

We currently work throughout Bolivia and Swaziland. Take a look at our Projects page; there you can see past projects we've completed in many other countries!

Does the EIA Bridge Program do other kinds of projects?

We believe there is efficiency and strength in specialization. By limiting our focus to pedestrian bridges, we have become an expert in footbridge design and construction. Engineers in Action works on other kinds of projects, mostly focusing on implementation of clean water systems. You can read more at: What We Do or Why Bridges?, just click on the links!

How does the EIA Bridge Program decide where to build a footbridge?

Our in-country staff members forge strong ties with local organizations and governments, who often are already aware of areas that may benefit from a safe river crossing. We collaborate with these partners to identify a potential bridge site and then we determine project feasibility by assessing level of need, community participation, and long term partnership potential with local governments.

How long does it take to build a bridge?

Our suspended bridge projects generally take eight weeks to complete, depending on the commitment and availability of the community and the participation of university chapters.

How long is the longest bridge the EIA Bridge Program has constructed?

Our longest suspended bridges are the Las Pencas and San Diego bridges in Nicaragua, which both measure 120 m, or 393.7 ft.

What is the EIA Bridge Program's technical feasibility criteria to consider a project?

All projects must meet these main criteria:

  • The project must be constructible with locally-sourced materials and labor.
  • There must be a realistic method of funding the construction of the project after the design is complete.

Does the EIA Bridge Program accept individual volunteers?

We welcome inquiries from volunteers with specific skillsets that can contribute to our programs.

Contact us to see how you can take action: ethan.gingerich@engineersinaction.org.

Does the EIA Bridge Program have internship opportunities? 

Our primary stipend volunteer opportunity is our Field Intern Program. Field Interns are immersed in a culture, work on a variety of projects, and gain valuable professional experience. Field positions require a minimum 6-month commitment in the country of application, 1-year preferred.

Not interested in field work? We'd love to chat about how you could help out with our headquarters work! 

Contact us to see how you can take action: ethan.gingerich@engineersinaction.org.

Ambassadors are our main volunteer corps and the best way to get involved in addition to Bridge Corps. If interested, fill out this survey and we will be in touch.