Newlab is collaborating with a refugee led design team called Opportunigee, located in the Nakivale Refugee Settlement in Uganda. We are designing and building a ‘village pilot’ which will house 500 recently resettled refugees.
We are partnering with Newlab members, international designers, engineers, and NGOs to create a new model for refugee resettlement. Our goal is to integrate innovations and technology that increase access to critical resources like water, food, and energy, while creating dignified housing and vibrant public spaces.
The goal of the studio and this pilot is to create scalable solutions for resettlement in hopes of addressing the escalating global refugee crisis.
The user design team interviewed 100+ recently resettled families in Nakivale to better understand how shelters were built and to document resources throughout the community. Newlab conducted research to explore relevant technology solutions, refugee innovation, and humanitarian and global development practices.
Newlab and Opportunigee worked together to design a ‘village pilot’ model of resettlement to include housing, infrastructure, and vibrant public spaces. Together we iterated on the designs with global partners and began prototyping in Nakivale.
Newlab and Opportunigee surveyed state of the art solutions from around the world and tested Newlab member products to ideate on the ‘village pilot’ concept. The Opportunigee team developed building prototypes and responded to community feedback to incorporate relevant technology and infrastructure solutions.
Once a final ‘village pilot’ plan is ready, Opportunigee along with partners and select vendors will begin the build. This will include site preparation, a water delivery system, participant selection, co-building of homes, community spaces, and sanitation systems.
Newlab and Opportunigee will document learnings from the refugee led and implemented ‘village pilot’ and evaluate opportunities to replicate this holistic and locally led approach to refugee resettlement.
Working with global and local partners, Newlab will determine opportunities to scale ‘village pilot’ concepts throughout Nakivale and globally to address long term displacement.
Director of Nakviart
and Business Mentor