Design Like You Give a Damn: Architectural Responses to Humanitarian Crisis
Architecture for Humanity is a grassroots nonprofit organization that seeks architectural solutions to humanitarian crises. Through design-build programs, competitions, educational forums, and partnerships with community and relief organizations, the all-volunteer group creates opportunities for architects and designers from around the world to help communities in need. Since it was founded in 1999, Architecture for Humanity has provided critical design support on a number of projects, including mine clearance programs and playground building in the Balkans; earthquake recovery in Bam, Iran; and the reconstruction of Kirinda, Sri Lanka, in the wake of the devastating tsunami of December 2004. At the university level, architecture and design programs worldwide have used AFH's competitions and design criteria as a model for semester-long projects. Elementary and high-school students have also benefited from their design initiatives through after-school workshops - just one of the many ways that AFH helps to foster public appreciation for the ways in which architecture and design can improve lives. Through its many initiatives, Architecture for Humanity has been privileged to learn about and collaborate with a wide range of architects and designers who demonstrate that where resources and expertise are scarce, innovative, sustainable, and collaborative design can make a difference. These are the projects that rarely make the cover of design magazines, and all too often go unbuilt. 'Design like you give a damn' represents a compilation of these projects.