About

TRANSFORMING LIVES THROUGH DESIGN:

Our mission: improve the built environment of communities in need. We facilitate the design and construction of health, education and community projects primarily in Australia and the Asia Pacific region.

We believe that architecture can be an ethical tool for social change.

Our vision: is to transform lives through design.

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ARCHITECTS WITHOUT FRONTIERS — OUR STORY

Team

“Architecture is not a static object. We must factor in issues of risk—ecological, geological, political, social—and adopt a transdisciplinary mode of designing and delivering projects. We must then seek out the multiple narratives of the impact the designs, through diverse social, health, and education projects, have on people's lives.”

Dr Esther Charlesworth, FOUNDING DIRECTOR

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“AWF has an intense focus on making a relevant, long term contribution to vulnerable communities—communities that otherwise might be neglected by more mainstream organisations. In that sense, it is a bit of a renegade organisation.”

Phillip Greenham, CHAIRMAN

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“Part of our approach is to not actually design or build anything for the communities we work with, but to empower them. If you can provide the knowledge, tools, and resources then they can choose how these are best used. Once you’ve left and gone home, they are still self-determined and thriving. That’s the most useful role we play.”

Norman Day, DIRECTOR

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“We can’t expect that whatever our idea of how a project should work is going to work, because there are just so many differences in culture. That’s why it’s so necessary to be humble in our role. We can facilitate things but can’t dictate how things will work. I love that with AWF we’re able to bring in organisations who haven’t had that experience before.”

Leeanne Marshall, DIRECTOR

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"I'm interested in working with NGOs who don't just 'talk the talk', but 'walk the talk'. I've had first-hand experience with AWF implementing projects that make a real difference. It's great being able to partner with the talented design and construction community to move from a concept to a community facility."

Paul O'Connor, DIRECTOR

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“AWF draws together people with altruistic visions for their fellow man. We enable professional talents the opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way towards aiding and fostering healthy communities, it facilitates a way for people to contribute towards something bigger.”

Daniel Conquest, FINANCE ADMINISTRATOR

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"Working on the Fijian project has demonstrated to me the critical difference AWF can make in a community and reinforces the role that architecture plays in shaping and transforming people's lives.”

James Harley, Project Coordinator

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“AWF provides the opportunity for disadvantaged communities to make a tangible change... that will make a long-term, positive impact on their livelihoods. We work with communities who approach us for support in overcoming their infrastructure problems. The project is always led by the community, for the community.”

Jane McIntosh , COORDINATOR

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“What I really love about working at AWF is that we’re bringing the decision-making about peoples’ environments to people who really should have a say, people who probably have never worked with an architect before and might look to us as experts. But in the end, they are the experts of their own environment and we can just help to guide the process.”

Ryan Moroney, PROJECT COORDINATOR

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“There are many talented architects ready to step forward and provide architectural services for those communities who would otherwise be without. And they can, as I have, with AWF facilitating real opportunities to do so locally and in the Asia Pacific region”. — Robert Stent

Robert Stent, Director

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News

Australian Bushfires

We are in a state of emergency as bushfires continue to destroy lives, homes and communities. Firefighters have been flown in from surrounding states and New...

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Visit the apiary

Do you want to learn more about the importance of bees for our food security? The Apiary at Collingwood Children's Farm is open on the second...

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AWF + JCB END OF YEAR CELEBRATION

Thank you to JCB Architects for hosting the AWF Network Partner End of Year Celebration last night at the beautiful, new South Melbourne Life Saving...

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PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS 2019

Architects Without Frontiers with its 12 AWF Network Partners are proud of another successful year, working on complex projects for vulnerable communities in Australia and...

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WISHING YOU A PEACEFUL 2020

Thank you to the incredible community members and groups with whom we work and to our AWF Network Partners. Our important work is not achievable...

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MAIN ST: COBARGO NSW

AWF and it’s network partners pays its deepest respects to those agencies and volunteers involved in fighting these walls of fires and or with houses...

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THE ANGANWADI PROJECT

THE ANGANWADI PROJECT in Architecture Australia The Anganwadi Project (TAP) is featured in Architecture Australia magazine (January 2020, Issue 1) with a beautiful article written by...

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ONE LIFE TO LOVE PROJECT

ONE LIFE TO LOVE PROJECT Inspiring things can happen when the right organisations become connected. That’s why it’s exciting to see the new AWF collaboration between...

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HOPE HOUSE - A RETROSPECTIVE

AWF collaborated with Mahboba’s Promise and Tomaszewski Associates back in 2005 to develop Hope House in Kabul, a project designed to house women and children...

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HONOUR FOR AWF EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

AWF is thrilled to share the news of Executive Director, Dr Esther Charlesworth’s inclusion in the 2020 Queen’s Birthday Honours List as a Member of...

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CNLC INDIGENOUS GARDEN

Tract is supporting the Carlton Neighbourhood Learning Centre (CNLC) to deliver an Indigenous Garden within its current Balam-Balam community garden. The purpose of the garden...

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INTERVIEW WITH PHIL GREENHAM AWF CHAIRMAN

Chair of the Board of Architects Without Frontiers, Phillip Greenham, recently shared his insights with Esther on his experiences with AWF, the changes he has...

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INTERVIEW WITH DIETER LIM, MANAGING DIRECTOR TRACT

Deiter Lim, Managing Director of Tract Consultants shares his insights on being an AWF Network Partner and the future of pro bono work in the...

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Big day for Cakaudrove Women's Resource Centre

The Society for Indigenous Women of the Cakaudrove Province, Fiji (Soqosoqo Vakamarama i Taukei ni Cakaudrove, SVTC), recently welcomed ambassadors and high commissioners from five...

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AWF Partners

“How do you create a sustainable community, in all senses of the word: socially, commercially, economically, environmentally? Our work with AWF aligns perfectly with these concerns. We can aid disadvantaged communities by helping them realise their cultural, touristic, and economic sustainability. This partnership aligns with everything we do.”—Dieter Lim, Managing Director

Tract

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Cox Architecture has an unwavering commitment to positively affect our environment through all our interactions and endeavours.

Cox Architecture

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“At a philosophical level, I think our industry can, and really should, contribute—in fact, I think it’s undervalued in terms of the contribution it can make—to how we live, and how we interact, and to every aspect of our lives.”—Mark Loughnan, Hassell

Hassell

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“Good design is not meant to be a privilege, it’s something that should be accessible to all. A lot of the time it’s limited in who it gets to, so it should also be affordable. Thoughtfully designed environments really can change one’s feeling of humanity.” —Tristan Wong, Director

SJB

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Bonacci Group’s mantra of “Simplicity Delivers Economy” accurately describes our approach to the consideration and implementation of creative design solutions.

Bonacci

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"Our partnership with Architects Without Frontiers is a social and cultural investment. It is a core part of our ethos and aligns with our brand values as a community focused organisation." —Mike Day, Founding Director

Roberts Day

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LCI are dedicated to providing our clients with the most environmentally responsive, sustainable designs.

LCI

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"The Maningrida project sits at the heart of its community and provides a cultural keeping-place for art that represents the region’s 13 diverse community groups. The ability for our practice to be involved in projects like this provides a wealth of valuable knowledge and insight for our team into where architecture should be heading: how we can learn from our clients, communicate ideas, and provide meaningful and useful spaces designed for the people that actually use them." —Tom Jordan, Hayball Managing Director

Hayball

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"Our collective mindset at Milieu is that being socially and environmentally conscious is not only good practice for designers of built form, but an imperative characteristic for any modern professional firm. Partnering with, and fostering organisations that share this aspiration is very important to us.” —Shannon Peach, Director

Milieu

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“To us, success is not just about providing financial value to our clients. It’s the bigger picture; helping to deliver the projects that shape our communities and make a real difference to the way people live." —David Stewart, Executive Director

WT Partnership

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“We recognise that, in partnership with AWF, our industry has a critical responsibility to the future of our communities and the environment through the built work that we leave behind, both locally and abroad. Importantly, we have the opportunity to work with communities to transform lives through improved health and well-being.” –Veryan Curnow, Associate Director

JCB Architects

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“Partnering with Architects Without Frontiers is a great opportunity for us to live our mission of making the world a better place through the design of the built environment.” —Robert Goodliffe, Clarke Hopkins Clarke

Clarke Hopkins Clarke

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NBRS strives to create life changing environments. We design spaces for people. We believe that architecture reaches beyond the physical construction of the built environment – it is a social art.

NBRSARCHITECTURE

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