Tuesday, November 16, 2010

peace through music

Make sure you take the time to listen to this. It is brilliant! Makes me smile. 

Read more about playing for change on their website

Monday, November 8, 2010

Thought I would share a couple of great organisations who have only popped up this year who are already on their way to doing great things by thinking outside the square and getting creative...
[co]design studio since forming in May this year have already 5 projects under their belt. The crux of this organisation is that they collaborate with architects and designers from the countries in which they work. What better way is there to engage communities than to build capacity of the local professionals and to exchange skills and learn from one another. Such inspiring work. You can follow their progress on Facebook, Twitter and the like. 

Another great concept is from the guys at turn me ON. The idea was to host worldwide design competition to generate discussion and ideas to address the current problem of accessing clean water in rural communities in Nepal. We are looking forward to seeing what the entrants have come up with! 

Friday, October 15, 2010

Well it is wet wet wet here today! Very fitting for this year's theme for Blog Action Day 2010.

With nearly a billion people lacking access to clean water, this year the focus is on water issues in communities around the globe. Thousands of bloggers will be uniting to raise awareness and create discussion.

So if you haven't done so already get blogging and become part of a global voice.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

young designers

Eco-Cubby is a fantastic initiative being implemented in schools across Victoria. Supported by City of Melbourne and Regional Arts Victoria, the program teams Architects and designers up with school children and communities to promote concepts of sustainable design.

I love how insightful children are and this program allows the students to develop a range of skills and address a number of topics from creating awareness of the living environment through to the use of maths and scale. To highlight what can be achieved, this is an Eco-Cubby that has actually been built! It was designed by the children at the University of Melbourne Early Learning Centre and opened last month!

Take a look at the Eco-Cubby blog to see what some other schools have been up to.

Monday, September 27, 2010

much lead

They made it! 3000 pencils! Great effort from the Much Lead team who are planning a suspended installation at the Object Gallery this October. 

Can't wait to see what becomes of this lovely collection of humble pencils...

compton cricket club

I saw a feature this morning on the Compton Cricket Club who will be touring our shores early next year and was intrigued as how it all started.

The Cricket concept began in 1995. Based in LA, the team was created to keep the youth of Compton away from gang activities, address homelessness through the values and ethics of cricket such as how to respect themselves and authority. 

A fundraiser for their tour was held recently in Sydney to assist in funding the tour. Take a look at the Cricket Outta Compton website to find out where you can catch a game and how you can get involved!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

a world of difference

A big congratulations goes out to Fran, a friend of b+c's who is one of 8 winners in this years UK Vodafone World Of Difference program. 

Fran has taken on a role as Project Coordinator with Latin America Foundation for the Future (LAFF) in Peru for the next 12 months. LAFF reaches out to young people who have been abandoned and provides support in the form of children's homes, shelters and nurseries. 

Fran will be setting up a skills training programme involving sustainable social business ventures for the most vulnerable. We wish her all the best in her new role and thank her for inspiring us all!  

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

b+c news

It has been a little while since we have been in touch. What have we been up to you ask? You may recall that we were in discussions with an inspiring group who in only four years managed to rally together to build the infrastructure to support 600 local students. The success of the school is due to the strong ownership that the community feels for the school and their excellent management skills.

We had previously heard of the great work of Got Matar and during our visit to Kenya we had the privilege to meet some of the extraordinary members of the Community Development Group who have been working tirelessly to give local children the best start they deserve.

b+c is teaming up with the school to design a much needed girls dormitory. Currently there is an extremely high drop out rate for girls as they travel long distances each day whilst still being expected to keep up their domestic duties at home. Not only this, the walk from home to school can be an extremely dangerous one. A dormitory will allow the girls to focus on their study providing them with a greater chance of completing their secondary education.

One of the exciting aspects of this project is that the building of the dormitory will run as a training program. This will provide an opportunity for the students and members of the surrounding community to learn basic skills in carpentry, bricklaying and the fundamentals in building design.

We are currently discussing the brief with the Community Development Group and the girls of Got Matar. We are thrilled to be sharing our passion for good design with Got Matar and proud to be continuing the support of Kenyan girls in furthering their education. We look forward to sharing stories of the road ahead with you all.

You can find more information on Got Matar and read all about other exciting initiatives that they have started by visting www.gotmatar.org

Friday, March 12, 2010

AIME high

At the Vanguard last night we not only listened to some great music (headliners Saving Grace ) but in the process raised money for what can only be described as an educational revelation!
Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME) is one of those not-for-profit organisations that you can't help but be in awe of. The program partners university students with young indigenous students, from years 7-12. This unique, one-on-one education based mentoring program aims to improve year 10 and year 12 completion rates and university admission rates for all participating students.

Beginning in 2005 with just 20 students from Redfern, AIME is now looking to engage more than 1000 students and plan to expand into Victoria and Queensland in 2010. What a fantastic acheivement! Do take the time to check out their website, truly inspiring.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

barefoot ball!

It is always encouraging to hear of others doing great work. Operating in Uganda, the United Future Foundation (UFF) focuses on making education and skills training available to youth living in poverty stricken areas.

UFF is hosting the Black Tie and Barefoot Ball (not bare football as I first read it to be... another fundraising idea perhaps?) on May 15th, at The Hilton, Sydney. We take our hat off to anyone who can get a function of this size up and running! So congratulations to both Annabelle and Dave and all the best guys for what is shaping up to be a fun-filled night, not to mention a worthy one!

You can find out more about UFF by visiting their website.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Friends of Rang'i

Rang'i Care Centre is an initiative set up to provide a home for orphaned children. The b+c team visited the children at Rang'i during our trip to Kenya and spent hours playing with all the amazing children. 

Amber has a long history with the centre having worked there in 2005. She and her fellow volunteers fell in love with the people and continue to show their support for the centre. They have recently set up the Friends of Rang'i blog so that everyone can be kept in the loop and read about the amazing work carried out at the centre. Here you can find out how to get involved, see photos, view the plans for the new school and read about inspiring people who grew up at Rangi' and are now achieving amazing results at college! 

You can also join the Rang'i Care Centre Facebook group.

We wish Rang'i all the best in the future and send all our love to all the gorgeous children who continue to inspire us all. 

Monday, February 15, 2010

project h

I've been meaning to post something about the fabulous work of Project H here for way too long. And unfortunately this isn't related to what I originally intended to tell you about! I'll save that for another post as telling you about the refresh project is more pressing!

Project H are an amazing non profit of designers and builders based in the US. I initially found out about their work when perusing the Architecture for Humanity projects and their innovative and fun playground at the Kutamba Aids Orphans School in Uganda. More on that later.

Emily Pilloton heads Project H and is about to take a year out to run a design/build curriculum in Bertie County School District in North Carolina - one of the US's most underprivileged areas. The course will combine design thinking, vocational trade training, and community citizenship to equip low-opportunity teenagers with critical creative problem solving skills for life. Students will collaborate to design, develop, and prototype a built community project. The following summer, they will be offered paid summer jobs to actually construct the project. How cool is that? Just amazing- I want to be a student in Bertie County!

So, Emily has entered the project in the Pepsi Refresh Project for the chance to be awarded $50,000 to kick start the first semester. You can help by voting every day until the end of February. They're currently in 15th place so every vote counts to get the project back in the top 10 where they'll grab the $50K!

You need to register to vote and then all you need is to click each day until the end of Feb - get voting everyone, this would be an amazing project to see come to fruition.

More on Project H and the Kutamba Aids Orphans School and Emily's new book very soon!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

palette places

In the words of Miss Lush the world has gone palette-o-rama mad! I don't know about you but I seem to be seeing them all over! We love palettes so here are some of our top palette picks:

Amber's number 1, The Palettenhaus in Linz...

The Kinglake temporary village, constructed by Monash University students in consultation with Emergency Architects...

My personal fav, Mano Ponnambalam and Jenny Heim's ILLUMS BOX, a 2009 Sculpture by the Sea entry...

and lastly Section8 in Melbourne where thirsty vistors can lounge around and grab a drink from the shipping container bar (a container-o-rama blog will be featured next!)

The Social Studio

On a recent visit to Melbourne I stumbled across this great community concept. On first glance you expect this Smith Street studio to be just like any uber trendy cafe/clothing store that Melbourne so often delivers. However The Social Studio provides a unique opportunity for young refugees to not only use their style and skills to produce a clothing range but offers them emplyment, advice, encouragement, counselling and training.

At a time when it is becoming more and more important to reuse and recycle The Social Studio collects excess manufacturing material and reconfigures it into funky fashion! Take a look at their website, such a fantastic social enterprise!