Humanitarian design group closes down

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Global non-profit design group Architecture for Humanity (AFH) has closed down and made its staff redundant.

The organisation has shut its San Francisco headquarters and laid off its staff after it is believed to have run out of funds.

Co-founders Cameron Sinclair and Kate Stohr responded to the news in an email. “We just heard the news that Architecture for Humanity, the organisation we started more than 15 years ago, has pivoted its mission and is planning to close,” they wrote. “We are deeply saddened by this.”

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AFH raised money to fund architectural solutions to humanitarian crises around the world, raising over $5m in funding each year. It was active post Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and following the 2010 Haiti earthquake.

“The travesty isn’t that the organisation went over budget serving communities around the world,” said Margie O’Driscoll, former executive director of the San Francisco chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

“It is that humanitarian design isn’t considered a fundamental right. And that today, in San Francisco, it is easier to find funding for an app than to fund an organisation which transforms lives in places most Americans don’t know exist.”

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