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— The Hope Village —

Location: Mogadishu, Somalia.
Projects partners: Dr. Hawa Abdi Foundation, Archi#Aid, Barefoot College.
Projects status: Seeking funding and strategic partners.

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Project description: Somalia suffered a long and bitter civil war. Many fled their homes and endured terrible living conditions on the run and in make-shift camps. After more than 20 years of political instability, finally peace can be seen on the horizon for Somalia. The country faces many problems with 967,445 registered internally displaced people (source: UNHCR, 2015). Conditions remain poor and the international community is still tentative it’s support of post-war Somalia. The dawning of peace is an opportunity to develop long-term, sustainable solutions. The goal is to create a brand new community base, to support refugees rebuilding their lives.

To this end, Building Peace Foundation and Dr. Hawa Abdi Foundation have united to create THE HOPE VILLAGE, an extension of the Displaced Persons Camp near Mogadishu. This was established and run by Dr. Hawa Abdi, Nobel Peace Prize Nominee in 2012 and recipient of the Building Peace Award 2015. Hope Village’s goal is to become a new model of sustainable development for Somalia. Beyond the clear benefits of semi-permanent housing, a school and community centre, the project will stimulate micro-enterprise within the camp through a subsidised marketplace. Building Peace’s Re:Build modules allows locals to fashion and construct their own buildings. This gives a sense of control over their lives, and restores dignity to a community that has lost so much. The Hope Village will be comprised of Residential Units, Educational, Community and Market spaces (houses, a school, a meeting center and a trading area).

To ensure environmental sustainability, solar panels are placed on top of each Re:Build structure: a third project partner, the Barefoot College, will train specific local workforce to build solar panels. Training these people will inject further energy and life to the village. The project design partner, ARCHI#AID, has the objective of building resilience and sustainable communities through architecturally appropriate design solutions. The Architecture will incorporate a PLEAS (Passive Low-Energy System) which promotes green design principles and also incorporate local craft in the design which will contextualise the architecture and afford a sense of ownership and pride to the local community. The design concept is responsive to cultivating a resilient urban development that facilitates future growth and sustainable communities.