The CO-HATY emergency housing project has been awarded a Bronze medal by the prestigious World Habitat Awards, recognizing its innovative approach to providing shelter for internally displaced people (IDPs) in Ukraine.
Recognising innovation and collaboration in providing shelter for IDP in Ukraine
The project, initiated by Ukrainian urban laboratory METALAB and independent agency Urban Curators, has converted abandoned post-Soviet municipal buildings into good-quality interim accommodation for IDPs. This has helped to alleviate the severe shortage of affordable housing, already scarce due to a national policy favouring private ownership, now compounded by the war, which has forced millions of people to flee their homes.
With the support of local government and a large network of agencies, CO-HATY has so far raised over $1.3 million USD to renovate four buildings, providing housing for 640 IDPs in 2022. The project plans to renovate three more buildings and scale up to 7 in total for around 1300 residents by 2024.
Creating Homes That Go Beyond Walls, Windows and Roofs
CO-HATY also offers residents opportunities for social interaction and, in some cases, employment. The project is also working closely with international organisations and municipal governments to influence long-term urban development strategy, with the goal of providing vulnerable people with access to decent, safe, affordable, and permanent homes after the conflict.
The World Habitat Awards, organised by World Habitat in partnership with UN-Habitat, are the world’s leading housing awards, recognising and highlighting innovative, outstanding and revolutionary housing ideas, projects and programmes from across the world.
Anna Pashynska, CEO of METALAB and co-founder of CO-HATY: “We are honoured to receive this recognition from the World Habitat Awards. Our grass-roots action and the spaces we create go beyond building infrastructure. They help people to integrate into new communities and for industries to retain their workforces. This award is a testament to the resilience and ingenuity of the Ukrainian people.”
David Ireland, Chief Executive of World Habitat: “We were inspired by CO-HATY’s collaborative approach involving multiple organisations and the IPDS themselves in the design process. With an eye on the future, it looks at how these buildings can be used in the long term. It is a model with huge potential to be transferred to other Eastern European countries with similar social housing problems.”