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The Future of Making Things….in Rwanda: Pro bono volunteers head to the land of a thousand hills

October 14, 2016

Next week, a team of Autodesk pro bono volunteers and Team4Tech staff will be lending their skills to designers in Rwanda.

The project is in partnership with MASS Design Group (MASS), an Autodesk Foundation Grantee. MASS has been working in Rwanda since their inception in 2008, and this September launched the Africa Design Center (ADC) in Kigali. The ADC is a fellowship program that trains and empowers the leaders who will design a more equitable, just, and sustainable Africa.

Autodesk volunteers will provide software training and design thinking workshops to MASS staff and ADC fellows. The two weeks of programming will also incorporate builders and foremen, as well as local community partners like Water for People and UNHCR. The opportunity to teach, learn from, and connect these organizations will build capacity and increase their impact across the groups.

 impactPhotos courtesy of MASS Design Group

“The Autodesk volunteers will not just get to share their expertise during this program, but will also learn so much from the talented, mission-driven organizations we will work with in Rwanda,” said Kellan Hays, the employee impact manager at Autodesk.

Rwanda is a rapidly growing economy, and organizations like MASS know there is need for sustainable, equitable infrastructure and design. Partner organizations on this project are using design to improve access to clean water, conditions for refugees, health care, education, training for builders and makers, and more.

kigaliView of Kigali from Inema Arts Center

The project is part of Autodesk’s Employee Impact and pro bono program, which supports employees to make a positive impact at work, at home, and in the community. This is the third project Autodesk has done with Team4Tech, a non-profit that helps tech employees advancing 21st century education through volunteer projects in underserved communities around the globe.

Stayed tuned for experiences from Rwanda, and follow the group’s journey with #AutodeskLife.

Read about previous Autodesk pro bono projects in South Africa with Team4Tech here.

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