Since 2014, saga has been involved in a community project in Joe Slovo West, an informal area in the suburbs of Port Elizabeth, South Africa. As architects, we believe that we have a role to play in assisting such a community in its very own process of self-development. For nearly three years now, we have been working with some of the community members on the implementation of various facilities within the precinct. After a first building in 2015 (community hall), the team went back to Joe Slovo and worked collectively on a second phase of the process. The project is based on a local initiative, and intends to assist it in having a more powerful and long lasting impact on the area.
The project consists in the design and construction of a new building for an existing preschool in Joe Slovo. The main goal is to provide the children of the community with a better and safer learning environment. The project is based on a local initiative, the Silindokuhle Preschool, founded by Patricia Piyani in 2010. This personal initiative led to the creation of a NPO (Silindokuhle Preschool), which is run by a group of local women and intends to address the issue of the lack of educational infrastructures for the youngest children of Joe Slovo.