Sponsored by SEED Network. Funded by the Fetzer Institute. Produced by The Uptake.

Design Corps supports the vital role that design can play in addressing critical issues and needs of communities. Through the Social Economic Environmental Design (SEED) initiative, Design Corps provides communities, institutions and design professionals with the tools and services they need to integrate community-engaged processes into design activities, leading to projects that reflect a community's values and cultural identities. Public inclusion as a "best practice" in design is increasingly recognized as a highly effective way to sustain the health and longevity of a place or a community.

SEED Documentaries showcase the public value of design and exemplary collaborations. Grow Dat Youth Farm at City Park (Grow Dat) in New Orleans, Louisiana is a 2012 SEED Award winner for Excellence in Public Interest Design (featured above in the SEED Documentary). Grow Dat is a project of Tulane City Center. As the primary venue for outreach projects at Tulane School of Architecture, the Center partners with community organizations to address complex design challenges, supporting New Orleans residents in imagining and pursuing projects that strengthen neighborhoods.

At Grow Dat, people from different backgrounds and disciplines come together in research and practice to support public health, local economies and a sustainable food system. The farm mission is to nurture a diverse group of young leaders and provide job training through the meaningful work of growing food. It involves a diverse group of high school student crew members who learn to plant, harvest and cook as well as participate in leadership training classes. Social, economic and environmental issues addressed through this collaborative design project include poverty reduction, youth empowerment, employment, obesity, good health and green gardening.

 

 

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Fostering sustainable communities in the United States — communities guided by principles of social justice and distinguished by healthy environments, strong local economies, and thriving cultures.