The classroom is a place where students spend their earliest years growing and developing. It’s an environment where kids and teens should be encouraged to discover themselves and their potential as evolving human beings. But most recently, with such intense focus on test scores and dwindling school budgets, the significance of this learning space has gone unnoticed, and the importance of an inspiring educational environment has become null. But have no fear, for Architecture for Humanity is changing that by way of Guerrilla Green, our latest school design initiative.
As of October 22, 2012 Architecture for Humanity launched a project that puts the fate of the classroom into the hands of the students. Formatted as a three round competition, Guerrilla Green challenges teens to visualize a plan to improve the spaces within their schools, and supports their visions by granting up to $13,000 to the most progressive ideas.
The heart of this initiative comes from our Chief Eternal Optimist, Cameron Sinclair, who wants to give students the design support that he lacked at a young age. “The only difference between a good idea and a great one is implementation”, argues Sinclair, who conceptualized Architecture for Humanity as a kid. “We can’t wait while the innovative ideas sit on the shelf, so we are funding the Guerrilla Green student design initiative, in turn investing in what really matters, the environmental leaders of tomorrow”.
Since it’s ground breaking start in October, Guerrilla Green has propelled into a nation wide competition, bringing in brilliant and innovative ideas from students and schools all across the United States. What this inpouring of submissions proves is that the youth have a voice, and when it comes to the space where they are expected to learn, they want to be heard.
Many Guerrilla Green hopefuls have created videos for sharing their ideas and enthusiasm.
Not only is Guerrilla Green geared directly towards students, but it’s also partially funded by students. Youth Rock the Rebuild is a group of teen musicians out of northern California who perform to raise money for school related and disaster relief efforts. Directed by Students Rebuild his musically inclined crew was more than thrilled to help out when we pitched them the idea for Guerrilla Green. Who better knows the needs of the school, than the students themselves?
As of February 1, 2013 Guerrilla Green submissions is closed for submissions, and on Friday, February 15th Architecture for Humanity will announce it’s first round of 10 winners. With the second round devoted to idea implementation, we look forward to seeing these next generation thinkers turn into now generation doers.