Ikea is creating 10,000 of its flat-pack short-term shelters developed for refugees created homeless by conflict and all-natural disasters .

Better Shelter by Ikea Foundation for UNHCR

The Ikea Foundation will provide the Greater Shelter units to the United Nations Refugee Company (UNHCR), which will distribute them globally to displaced households and communities later this year.

“Putting refugee families and their demands at the heart of this task is a great illustration of how democratic style can be employed for humanitarian value,” explained Jonathan Spampinato of the Ikea Basis. “We are exceptionally proud that the Better Shelter is now available, so refugee households and children can have a safer location to contact property.”

Better Shelter by Ikea Foundation for UNHCR

The prototype design for the shelters was revealed in 2013 and has considering that been examined by 40 refugee households in Iraq and Ethiopia, and produced further in response to their feedback.


Connected story: Ikea’s refugee housing is “unusually delicate and intelligent” says Alice Rawsthorn


With an anticipated lifespan of three years, the shelters are created to be far more resilient and far better insulated than standard refugee tents. Measuring 17.5 square metres, they are also twice as huge and accommodate five people.

Better Shelter by Ikea Foundation for UNHCR

Production is set to commence imminently and the shelters could reach these in want as early as this summer.

“The refugee housing unit (RHU) is an thrilling new growth in humanitarian shelter and represents a significantly needed addition to the palette of sheltering options mobilised to aid those in need,” stated Shaun Scales, UNHCR’s chief of shelter and settlement. “Its deployment will make certain dramatic improvement to the lives of numerous people impacted by crises.”

Better Shelter by Ikea Foundation for UNHCR

The shed-like structures are built from light-weight polymer panels laminated with thermal insulation, which clip onto a steel frame.

Better Shelter by Ikea Foundation for UNHCR

Panels, pipes, connectors and wires all come flat-packed in cardboard boxes like Ikea’s furnishings, and get 4 hours to assemble with out the need of further equipment. A solar panel on the roof provides sufficient energy to illuminate the interior following dark.

Better Shelter by Ikea Foundation for UNHCR

The construction could be upgraded in excess of time, for illustration by incorporating earth walls or a metal roof.

Better Shelter by Ikea Foundation for UNHCR

The task acquired an honorary award at the Swedish Layout Awards last 12 months. Style critic Alice Rawsthorn, who sat on the judging panel, described the undertaking as “an unusually sensitive and intelligent response”.

“The realisation that the people who want layout ingenuity the most, the poorest 90 per cent of the global population, have historically been deprived of it, and the determination to address that, have been one of the most crucial design and style developments of the past decade,” stated Rawsthorne.

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