Kakuma refugee camp comprises a large population of two generations born into refugee status. It is a camp that has transformed into a town, in a host-country that does not allow refugees to work or travel outside the camp. UNHCR estimates that one-fifth of the camp population are refugee youth (age 15-24), and only 6% are currently able to attend school.
Exposing Hope collaborated with Windle Trust, UNHCR’s mandated education partner, and by way of visits and personal interviews with students conducted field research. During the research, they noted that many schools had moved to a “two schools in one” concept to enable them enroll more students. Also, while more students attended classes, the school facilities were being used continuously, and students lacked a space to study either before or after school hours. We decided a library would be an addition to the school which would prove essential to students wishing to study outside of class hours.Exposing Hope and Windle Trust then identified Vision School as the best location for the Exposing Hope Library. The school has approximately 1,000 youth attending from 6:30am-12:30pm and an entire second school of 1,000 youth from 12:30pm-6pm.
The Exposing Hope Library
Design for the Exposing Hope Library was created in conjunction with award-winning Australian architect Luigi Rosselli to account for the climate and environmental challenges.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Kakuma refugee camp was inaccessible and construction was halted. The library, however, was used frequently by students as a reading location and an open-air classroom.
The library officially in June 2022 with textbooks and reading books donated by Africa Publishing Innovation Fund (APIF) and BookAid International.