Pagirinya Architecture Library (PAGarchLib), Adjumani-Uganda

The Pagirinya Architecture Library (PAGarchLib) in Pagirinya refugee settlement, AdjumaniUganda was launched on Feb, 19th 2022 at the YEF satellite community space attended by over fifty (50) people, present at the launch were the UNHCR local representative, the community leaders, politicians, refugee youth, and students from Pagirinya secondary school.

The over 80+ Architecture, arts, and photography books were donated by Stephen Kovats and friends from Germany to help improve the architectural knowledge of the young people in the Pagirinya refugee settlement and beyond. The Library serves as a resource center for young people to access knowledge, get inspiration, ideas, and resources on architecture, art, photography, and media documentation.

Beneficiaries of this library include art teachers and students from Pagirinya secondary school and other out-of-school community members who are grasping concepts and incorporating their skills into architecture through free-hand sketching of prototypes using simple tools such as pencils, rulers, tracing papers, and cutter.

Ira and Kovats taking inventory count for the books

The main objective of the Pagirinya Architecture Library (PAGarchLib) is to provide young people with resource access, get inspiration, and ideas on architecture, art, photography, and media documentation to create responsive building prototypes to solve local challenges of the communities, and build houses in which they can happily live in and making these prototypes open-sourced for easy collaboration via media platform- GitHub.

Vitali Musloushi, UNHCR-Pakele representative at the Library launch

On behalf of UNHCR-Uganda, Mr. Vitali applauded YEF and r0g agency for open culture and critical transformation for such an innovative approach to eradicating community challenges, he says the library will support the young refugees to be creative and develop their skills through reading works of other successful people in the industry. He added that the project will help fill the knowledge gap since the young people can come together and develop ideas the world so desperately needs and contribute to the development of the community and that UNHCR will try to lobby support for this kind of initiative. He appealed to the refugee Youth and the host community to take advantage of the Architecture library and the training space to enhance their skills for employment and entrepreneurship.

Hon. Ondoga, the Youthful Local council chairman of the Dzaipi sub-county in which Pagirinya refugee settlement is situated was one of the guests who graced the PAGarchLib launch. He too was amazed at the idea of creating such a unique library to inspire young people to be proactive in the community. He stated that for a community or a country to develop, it needs to have creative and impact-oriented young people. He rallied youth to make the best use of the library to gain the extra knowledge and inspiration that they would never get within the area. He appealed for the services to be open to the youth from the host community so that their talents are tapped for positive community impact and peaceful coexistence. He promised to cooperate with YEF for the necessary support to ensure the success of the project.

Hon. Ondoga James

“I feel this is a great place for us, we’ve been looking for books like this that can broaden our scope of work. I will use this opportunity to integrate this knowledge into our classroom activities by involving learners to do imaginative sketching of structures. This can just be done with simple tools like pencils, tracing papers, and rulers. The school currently has no established library to find good books like this. The architecture library is a perfect place for me and the students to meet probably on weekends to extend our learning. We appreciate
YEF for this kind of initiative”.

“I give my sincere thanks to YEF for inviting us here, it’s an amazing opportunity for me. I didn’t know such things existed here, now with the concepts, I’m getting from the books, I can do many things with my art skills. I currently use it only for branding Tshirts and signposts, but I now have the idea to use it for architecture as well. The books are full of pictorial illustrations and easy to understand. I will invite my friends I work with to also come here and gain some knowledge”. Opira Jonathan, a design artist in Pagirinya refugee settlement.

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