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Refugees, Resiliency, and Public Space: The BSA Syria Initiative

  • COST

    Free and open to the public

Charrette Kickoff

What is the place for childhood in the midst of survival?

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, 4.8 million Syrians have fled to Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, and Iraq since the Syrian Civil War began five years ago. More than half are under the age of 18. The average stay of refugees is 17 years—an entire childhood.

The BSA Syria Initiative aims to address a need for child-focused public space facilities to help improve the quality of life for Syrian refugee families in Lebanon. The initiative is a collaboration of design professionals and students in Beirut and Boston, in partnership with the Karam Foundation and SAWA for Development and Aid.

What roles can design—and designers—play in the face of such overwhelming challenges?

Please join the kickoff of the BSA Syria Initiative charrette.


The charrette will take place in three meetings, in March and April, 2017. The first will be a kickoff and in-depth information exchange; the second, a hands-on workshop, concluding with a spectrum of concept ideas; and the third, the final presentation. All sessions will be conducted with Skype connection to colleagues in Lebanon. Interdisciplinary teams including architects, landscape architects, and other designers are encouraged, as are teams that mix students and professionals. Designers are invited to sign up as individuals or as teams.

Charrette Dates
Kickoff—Friday, March 24, 2017, 9:00 am–noon
Pinup and work session—Saturday, April 1, 2017, 9:00 am–3:00 pm
Final presentations—Friday, April 7, 2017 9:00 am–noon

Please register to receive additional details and background materials, and to share with the organizers information about you, so that appropriate teams can be made.