Core Relief

Range of 3D printed humanitarian aid products produced by refugees and distributed open source across the world

CORE RELIEF is a range of humanitarian aid products, designed and produced by a group of local and refugee designers inside a refugee camp in Lesvos-Greece, by recycling discarded plastic aid items, into new products, that the refugee community can use to improve their habitat and community. The designs of the CORE RELIEF produced, are distributed free and open source, so they can benefit 65 million displaced people across the world.

Scope

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Core Relief products, are a sustainable answer to the financial, material and environmental waste produced by the discarded plastic humanitarian aid standardised products (tents, blankets, jerry cans, tarpaulins buckets)  which are universally distributed in every emergency and environmental disaster around the world, by all major humanitarian agencies (UNHCR, UNICEF, MSF, IFRC). As there are currently 65 million refugees and internally displaced people around the world, the scale of distribution of these products is unprecedented. In Greece alone, UNHCR distributes 50.000 items every month, helping refugees to restructure their communities. The intense use, means that these aid products very quickly become obsolete, and in need of constant replacement. The lack of an effective recycling strategy, results in expensive life-saving products expiring quickly, increasing the cost of humanitarian aid and leading into great amounts of non-sustainable environmental waste. 

Approach

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Alongside the refugee community, LATRA identified that the standardised life-saving humanitarian aid products that were distributed, quickly become obsolete, depriving beneficiaries from their critical life-saving capacity, as well as generating in a short period of time incredible amounts of environmental waste for the community living inside the refugee camp. The objective was to find circular strategies to locally recycle discarded plastic relief products into new useful humanitarian products that can continue to make a positive impact to the well-being of communities. More so, employing cutting edge technologies -such as 3D printing- in the process, offers an opportunity to accelerate the integration of refugees into the 21st century, by equipping them with crucial technological skills that can be carried throughout their life journey. creating communities which are inclusive, adaptive, resilient and sustainable.

Funding

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Core Relief received funding by Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie and in 2020 was awarded the Distributed Design Award.