top of page

On the eve of construction

Interest in our project has been ramping up recently, and we’re looking forward to our next steps. Welcome back, thank you for checking in. We’ve been working on the backstage side of things for about a year and a half now and it’s finally to the point where we can be moving on to project building.

The Site

We have arranged for approximately 3 hectares of land to be allocated to our project site, with an option to expand if needed as time goes by. Our projected capacity is 50 people, residents and staff, mostly housed in pods of 8 cabinas around a central bathroom and showers facility. The commissary and general gathering place will be first up, followed by a pod of housing so we can house the rest of our creative program development team while they’re down here sharing their experiences and insight. We will be doing a few rounds of bringing experienced disaster response site leads down to add perspectives to our programing.

We will be building out the site in 4 stages, each taking about 6 months to complete when we have funding and somewhat cooperative weather. It is a jungle in the tropics so the weather can be a bit unpredictable.

Stage 1: Initial construction

Initially we will be building our central gathering house and commissary. We will also be building one pod of 8 cabinas surrounding a building with bathrooms and showers, where we can house our guests in the next stage of the project.

Stage 2: Coursework testing and additional construction

In stage 2 we will be bringing in creative collaborators and continuing construction. Our current creative collaborators have all either led response groups or have been responders for years and have excellent insights. The goal is to integrate more perspectives into our collaborative education courses and social structures, as well as build another pod of housing so we can begin to bring in residents. Our existing evaluation metrics will be updated and we will be able to welcome residents starting in Stage 3.

Stage 3: Responder support, veteran program development, continued construction

In this stage we will begin operations to support our humanitarian aid and disaster responder residents. This will include individual and group support, collaborative training courses, local activities, and clinical trauma support as available and needed. Our construction courses will begin doing outreach into the community to help with local buildings in need of construction assistance.

We will also be inviting down a few Veterans Association therapists to finalize the veteran assistance aspect of our project. They will help us create effective social and physical structures to support the needs of military veterans who will be residents in preparation for deployment into humanitarian aid and disaster efforts.

We will also be building another living pod to expand our resident capacity.

Stage 4: Regular operations and ongoing construction

At this point all the various aspects of our project will be up and running. As our operations continue we will be performing regular evaluations on how we are serving our residents and making any needed changes to be as effective as possible. We will be increasing our resident capacity as we build out 3 more housing pods. Our initial collaborative training courses of construction and utilities basics and safety, medical basics in a disaster response, and small group logistics will be in full swing. We are also developing an emotional and psychological tool set to provide to those who are going into their first response effort so resilience can begin on day one. Some of the courses we are planning to develop include the administration of response work, response work’s theory and social impact, designing metrics and performing data assessments, and decolonizing humanitarian aid.

We are excited by recent interest in The Refuge Project and are looking forward to beginning the next stages of our project.

We are very grateful to everyone for all the continuing support.

-The Refuge Project staff


bottom of page