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Design With a Purpose: Interior design students renovate 22-year-old daycare center

By Angela Casco

Photos courtesy of UP Interior Design Class of 2020

“It takes a village to raise a child,” so goes a famous African proverb. It seems that “village” includes graduating students from the University of the Philippines’ (UP) Interior Design Class of 2020 in a design project with a pur-
pose—renovating the classrooms and facilities at Kalinga Day Care Center (KDCC).

Called “Project Kalinga: Nurturing Spaces for the Future,” the students have given KDCC a fresh new look, upgrading the center’s reception area, recreation area, teachers’ room, kitchen, storage, and toilet. New furnishing and two
additional spaces—the dining area and the breastfeeding room—have also been designed and opened at the 22-year-old center.

PRACTICAL DESIGN The renovated teacher's room now maximizes the limited space through cream paint on the wall

PRACTICAL DESIGN The renovated teacher’s room now (below) maximizes the limited space through cream paint on the wall

Teacher's Room AFTER

The collaborative effort, which involved the UP College of Home Economics and faculty, and UP Center for Women’s and Gender Studies (UP CWGS), is a project for a redesigned “ID 179: Special Project” class for interior design students to engage in real-world scenarios and to realize that much about the discipline is addressing “significant
issues and concerns in our society.”

Through such initiative, students are also expected to learn meticulousplanning, designing, execution, and post-evaluation of projects.

A total of 10 interior design students enhanced KDCC’s reception area, kitchen, storage, and toilet: Dana Sangalang (project head); Erielle Ekong (quality control and site coordinator); Gaille Marquez (secretariat and procurement); Clement Ignacio (design head); Rizza Tabios (procurement and quality control); Steffi Yuquimpo (finance head and design co-head); Mikee Arevalo (CAD operator and  procurement); Catherine Asejo (site coordinator and quality control); Angela Titular (externals and publicity co-head); and, Sophia Teaño (externals and publicity co-head).

Recognizing that the center is useful for both kids and adults, the students have turned to tree houses as a collaborative space as inspiration in redesigning the spaces—simple yet well-lit with woodsy accents and touches of green.

DESIGN DONE RIGHT The recreation area before (left) has been transformed to become brighter and more suitable for playing and learning

DESIGN DONE RIGHT The recreation area before (above) has been transformed to become brighter and more suitable for playing and learning

Recreation Area AFTER 1

Just like trees, the students have transformed the center’s interiors into a growing learning environment as imaginative as child’s play.

KDCC’s new look—described as “gender fair”—also hopes “to highlight the importance of having a gender responsive early childhood care and development (ECCD) program for women’s empowerment and gender equality,” according to UP’s Fred Dabu in an article published in the university’s official website.

SPACE REVIVAL An idle area before (right) becomes a functional kitchen

SPACE REVIVAL An idle area before (above) becomes a functional kitchen

Storage Area BEFORE Converted to Kitchen Area AFTER

“Realize that the true beauty of the space occurred the moment that you shared your lives to others, listening, learning, and understanding where their needs come from. Thank you for advancing the role to give back to society, but I hope that this would not be the last time,” Hanna Faustino, professor and chairperson of UP CHE Department of Clothing, Textiles and Interior Design, tells the interior design students during the project’s unveiling. “I hope that you will consider this as a regular habit in your life. Always put others first. This will bring honor to our nation, as well as hope.”



Source: Manila Bulletin

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