• African Wildlife Foundation Ilima School Mass Design Group

Architects: MASS Design Group  
Location: Ilima,  Congo
Interior Décor: Mass Design Group
Project Year: 2015
Photographer: Rachel Brose
Website: www.massdesigngroup.org

"The ilima primary school is so far away. it takes three flights and a six hour motorcycle ride to get there, which takes about three days. this also means that not one building material can come in that can’t fit on the back of a bike. consequently, we had to build it all out of materials we could source or farm from this very site."

Alan Murphy, Mass Design Co Founder

You give, they give, we all give. That is the mindset that Mass Design group entered the Ilima School project with, that a little care from the tiniest sources can ripple across the wider angle of the whole spectrum of humanity and cause a paradigm shift.

African Wildlife Foundation Ilima School Mass Design Group

And it is with the collaboration of AWF that the Congolese project that will cater to the future of the Ilima children was born.

African Wildlife Foundation Ilima School Mass Design Group

The school speaks to a silent giant within the African architecture and building landscape, the power of the people. The ability to empower local craftsmen, carpenters and masons, teachers, students and the community at large to collectively create something wonderful. 

African Wildlife Foundation Ilima School Mass Design Group

It is much more than just brick, timber and space, it is a spirit that entangles itself within this school, and echoes far beyond with the Mass Creed "great design and architecture is possible everywhere".

From the Project Architects:

In collaboration with the African Wildlife Foundation, MASS completed its first conservation school in the rural Congolese jungle village of Ilima. The school serves as a primary school as well as a community center for the safe and mutually beneficial integration with local wildlife.

African Wildlife Foundation Ilima School Mass Design Group

The school’s construction is grounded in the belief that conservation and community development is most feasible when communities are given the opportunity to develop in harmony with surrounding natural environments.

School construction used exclusively local materials, including the fabrication of custom shingles using local timber on-site.

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