One Heart Village
In 2016 I participated in an international competition to design an ecovillage orphanage for children in Kenya. The brief called for a masterplan proposal that incorporated housing for the orphans, a high school, primary school, dormitories, multinational hall, sports fields, farms, trade training centre and an administrative centre.
Our approach was focused around three key ideas: Community at the heart of the scheme, Incremental housing (developed over time by the users) and the integration of skills training with the development of the site. This strategy would enable the older children to develop hands-on skills in farming and construction by learning relevant trades whilst building the facilities on site. A staging strategy was developed to enable the most crucial elements to be built first, which would generate an income for the village and enable further construction to follow; thus creating a sustainable facility- environmentally, socially and financially.