Architecture student inspired by volunteering trip to Sierra Leone

Thursday, 12 October 2017

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A volunteering experience has inspired Master’s student Beverley Angove to develop approaches to help people in Africa improve their accommodation.

Beverley, who is studying Architecture at Oxford Brookes University, travelled to Sierra Leone for ten weeks as part of the International Citizen Service Programme with Y-Care International – the non-profit, international relief and development agency of the YMCA.

While in Africa, Beverley lived with a local family and worked with volunteers on a project to support young women whose lives have been affected by the Ebola virus. Commenting on how the experience enhanced her studies, she said: “Studying architecture and having worked in practice for two years between my undergraduate and postgraduate, I am interested in developing approaches that will enable those living in slums or depressed conditions, to improve their accommodation.

“Volunteering has reinforced this ambition and I am even more determined to continue with this career path.”

I am interested in developing approaches that will enable those living in slums or depressed conditions, to improve their accommodation.Volunteering has reinforced this ambition and I am even more determined to continue with this career path.

Beverley Angove, Master's student, School of Architecture, Oxford Brookes University

Throughout the ten weeks, Beverley hosted workshops teaching key skills to help the women start or develop their own business, and also visited hospitals to meet with people suffering from malnutrition and who had lost family members to disease.

“It makes me want to help,” she said of the experience, “and I feel the best way is by using my knowledge in architecture, although I am hoping to help with other issues such as Neglected Tropical Diseases through raising awareness.”

Beverley is now focusing her final-year project on providing semi-permanent housing that can be easily assembled for refugees through the use of additive manufacturing.

Information about studying Architecture at Oxford Brookes University can be found on the School of Architecture webpages.

Oxford Brookes University believes in active citizenship and supporting graduating students who are able to contribute to their community, society and make a real difference in the wider world.

While studying at Oxford Brookes, students have the opportunity to develop skills that enhance their employability and potential contribution to society. More information for students can be found on Social Responsibility webpages.