Community space for Al-Yasmine, refugee camp in Bekaa, Lebanon

Develop a strategy to turn an empty spot in the refugee camp of Al-Yasmine in the Bekaa Valley in Libanon, into a "social space" in order to Improve the current living conditions and quality of life of Syrian refugees.
Residents of Al-Yasmine refugee Camp
My role as a Designer
Conduct Design research methods and moderate Design-thinking workshops within the interdisciplinary team.
Place / year
Lebanon / Germany / 2018


Lebanon hosts around 1.1 million Syrian refugees registered by the UNHCR, which is a high number for a country like Lebanon whose population does not exceed 4.4 million capita. Ultimately, the population has increased by around 25% in a country already suffering from weak services and infrastructure.

Al Yasmine camp is home to over 100 families who were displaced after the war in Syria. It is now setting up for another 120 families that will soon move there.


We have traveled to Libanon to have a direct contact with the Syrian refugees living in the Bekaa Area. We also stayed in a Camp and during some days we had the opportunity to run several research methods to understand the refugee's point of view which is different from the media, NGO's or even Lebanese citizens. Some of those methods were, interviews, collages, letters, and observation.



after our research in the Camp, we returned to Beirut to analyze all the material we have had collected, and then we develop 4 fields of opportunity fields based on the most relevant insights to then ideate and come up with ideas. Originally the challenge was focus only on the architectural aspect of the social space, nevertheless, we discovered that our solution had to go beyond to be able to empower the community to appropriate this space. 


How might we extend the sense of resposability beyond the familie's tents in order to create a green , enjoyable, shared space?


How might we reactivate the "hidden" potential of adults in order to pass on knowledge and raise self-esteem?


How might we support the learning process of kids to reduce the number of illiterates?


How might we motivate the residents of the camp to take action by fostering the sense of belonging to the community?


After the analysis phase, we have ideated in each of the opportunity fields, to then combine them to create a whole strategy. We designed a community space along with activities that e the encourage the community to build and participate in the project. We designed different sections within the space and activities around them. For instance, the educational "pavilion" is supported with activities to allow women to teach kids. Further, we also designed instructions for the NGO and a communication strategy to involve the refugees.

+49 157 72932177
typologo white.png

All rights Reserved Juan Sebastian Useche, 2019