For this project our course was collaborating with the Sustainable Futures in Africa network to imagine what sustainable development could look like in 2030. I was focusing on societal structures, specifically faith groups, and how these can be living in a more symbiotic relationship to nature and the environment.
Habitat is a new system of a public green-space which allows city-dwellers in the Global South to escape the hustle and bustle of their environment. Because faith plays a major role in the Global South, Habitat seeks to re-establish traditional connections between faith and nature. People who seek a space for prayer, meditation or rest can find a small oasis within the busyness of the city. The app helps the users to locate them easily and to verify their availability. The service also indicates the environmental qualities of the spaces, such as noise levels.
A user’s journey with Habitat.
The role of faith groups is vastly different in the Global South compared to the Global North. Oftentimes, faith groups are the most trusted authorities and people turn to them in times of need. They are strongly embedded in local communities and thus, can have a large impact. Based on these facts, it is inconsiderate to assume sustainable development in the Global South should be separate from local religious institutions.
Based on the thesis that with appreciation comes care, the intended impact of this project is to reconnect faith and nature by encouraging the appreciation and delight of both. In concept creation I found that designing beautiful and calming spaces for prayer and meditation embedded in nature is a good place to start establishing this relationship in an urban context.