Econef Children's Center 

Client: Pro-bono work for ECONEF
Duration: Completed 2018
Size: 650 m2 / 330 m3 BOA

Design team:
Pilvi Vanamo (LÖ&V)
Lukas Bidö, Carolina Wikström, Frida Öster (Asante Architecture and Design)
Jockum Beckeld (A-direkt)

Construction team:
Local construction team and volunteers from Architects Without Borders Sweden: Rebecka Wikström, Ludvig Hofsten, Björn Englöv, Daniela Lamartine, Louis Castaing, Josefine Berglund, Hanna Christiansson, Johanna Gidlöf, Klara Nordqvist, Else Abrahamsen etc.

Images: Robin Hayes

Econef Children’s Center is an ongoing project and a collaboration with Asante Architecture & Design, Architects Without Borders, Engineers Without Borders and Econef, a Swedish-Tanzanian NGO that aims to improve the standard of living for orphans in the Arusha area.

ECONEF is an independent non-governmental organization (NGO) located in Jua-kali, outside Arusha in northern Tanzania. It aims to improve the standard of living for orphan children in the area. With the help of private donations ECONEF is able to offer security and everyday necessities for the 13 children living at the Jua Kali orphanage. The new Children’s Center will include sleeping quarters for 25 and a school for 100 children in the community.

The aim of the new ECONEF Children’s Center is to reduce the orphanage’s dependency on private donations and eventually reach a self sufficient standing. To help achieve this goal the new buildings must be sustainable and to a large extent maintenance free. The center will produce its own electricity through the installation of solar panels. There will be systems for harvesting rainwater and natural ventilation integrated in the structure of the buildings. Adjacent areas for livestock such as chicken, cows and vegetables are also included in the masterplan. The residues will be converted to cooking gas in a low-tech biogas digester. Ultimately, the design aims to minimize the need for external building expertise and excessive transportation costs. To realize this goal, the use of local materials and traditional building techniques is prioritized.

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