MLK Day 2012: The Power of Design

Eli Whitney Museum

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Vacation Program

  • Monday, January 16, 2012
  • 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
  • Designed for ages 7 to 11

On Martin Luther King's Day, celebrate understanding, ingenuity and generosity.

Namibia occupies the Atlantic coast of southwest Africa. Its area is almost 5 times the size of New England but much of that land is unfriendly desert. Its population is small. Some of its people enjoy modern prosperity. But many toil to live from the land much as their ancestors did.

Construction materials are scarce. Margaret Courtney-Clarke, Tonia Von Lieres and local volunteers have used cast off polypropylene grain bags filled with the abundant desert sand, wire, and simple roofing felt to construct solid, comfortable homes that ward off the heat of summer and the cold of winter.

Construct a micro-experimental house using salt packs. Create its family and the meerkats, zebras, and elephants that inhabit it. Get to know DRC, Swakopmund where the first experimental house was built (and where Shiloh Jolie-Pitt was born.) With stories and music from Namibia. Consider the power of design to make a better world.

To honor Dr. King, the Museum will invest 30% of the tuition for this workshop in materials for the Sandbag Housing Project, DRC, Swakopmund, Namibia.

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