I took a studio class at Parsons that explored how architecture can improve the lives of marginalized people. This class changed my perspective on design, seeing it now as a medium to advocate for social and environmental causes. In this spirit, I am going to a refugee camp in Greece this spring to design and build a mobile tent for CircusAid, an occupational therapy non-profit who teaches circus arts to refugees.

CircusAid, founded by Jill Maglio, has been established as an all inclusive refugee support service that provides relief from mental anguish while helping build resilience through engagement in circus arts. 

I am reaching out to you - my family and friends - to help me raise funds for the material and labour needed to build this mobile circus tent featured  above. The build will occur between March and May 2018 lead by Aris Varagulis a Greece local from the island of Corfu and me, While Aris will direct the structural components, I am designing the tent's aesthetic—a prismatic kaleidoscope of color and light (not shown in video). This array of chromatic geometries will create a warm, whimsical environment and aims to be a beacon of fantasy from beyond. I will also document the tent construction process.

Fundraising Objectives
* Employ local Greece building professionals to lead the build.

* Purchase materials, tools and resources from local Greece industries and manufacturers.

* Employ skilled labor from within the refugee camps to assist in the build process.

Donate Now
The suggested donation is $25 however donations of all sizes are welcome. If you would like to claim a tax deduction on your donation please make your donation through our fiscal sponsor HERE .

Past Challenges
CircusAid has run circus workshops without this structure for the past two years and have come up against many obstacles relating to adequate space. They are often facilitating workshops on concrete grounds covered in garbage, no shade or sun protection, with the added difficulty of finding adequate rigging prohibiting us from teaching aerial. Having no physical boundary within the space they facilitate also makes instruction and focus difficult.

The Bigger Picture
With your support in creation of the mobile circus tent, CircusAid will be providing three workshops per day in multiple circus disciplines at refugee camps surrounding Athens, Greece. The workshops include clowning, juggling, hula hooping, acro-balance and games to provide an immediate alternative from the adverse mental health effects of occupational deprivation. The interactions the refugees have within the circus experience promote trust, empathy, communication, reciprocity and teamwork. These social and emotional qualities, once integrated, are transferred towards the newly acquired relationships and occupational roles migrants make within their new communities; ultimately enabling more diverse and integrated cross cultural communities to thrive. CircusAid programing is backed by occupational science and social circus research and evidence based practices.

For ways to get involved and for more information please visit 
Or follow their social media

Thank you for helping improve the lives of marginalized people through design!
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Organizer and beneficiary

Sana Garner
New York, NY
Jill Maglio

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