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September 2015: DOMO - Rethinking & Re-Engineering Refugee Camps

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

September 2015: DOMO - Rethinking & Re-Engineering Refugee Camps

Half of all Syrians have been forced to flee their homes due to a brutal and relentless civil war. But they're not the only ones. As a result of conflict, persecution, and poverty throughout various regions of the globe, there are now over 59.5 million refugees or displaced people worldwide - the largest number since World War II.

The average lifespan of a refugee camp is close to 20 years. Fifty percent of refugees today have lived in a camp for five or more years. As these sobering numbers indicate, refugee camps are increasingly not only serving as places of shelter, but also as temporary homes. Pre-existing solutions are not designed for such long-term use.

MORE THAN SHELTERS, a Hamburg-based social business providing innovative, healthy, and sustainable design for humanitarian purposes, is working to address this issue. With projects in Jordan, Greece, and Germany, the organization is responding to the present-day refugee crisis with a set of next-generation, human-centered shelter offerings and social design tools. The business has also been involved in Nepal to rebuild schools following the devastating earthquakes this past spring.

MORE THAN SHELTERS is working with people in need to transform the most miserable living conditions on our planet into more humane environments. Its main invention, DOMO, is a construction kit for building large igloo-shaped shelters for families in crisis regions. DOMO modules can be combined into multiple space configurations to accommodate various needs, such as families with large numbers of children or multigenerational households. Through the use of different tent siding materials or double walls, DOMO's stable, long-lasting components can be adapted for all climatic regions.

To increase awareness and solicit donations, the organization has launched the DOMO HOTEL on the rooftop terrace of a Hamburg hostel, enabling people to book a real or symbolic night in a DOMO tent. The organization is also involved in establishing partnerships with other commercial activities, such as "glamping," festivals, and events, to combine their product's purchase with support for the organization's humanitarian projects.

Last year, the company's CEO presented at the Solve for X conference, a Google initiative that aims to surface brilliant scientific innovations and technological breakthroughs with the potential to solve global humanitarian issues. To watch the video, click here.

For more information, contact: or +49 40 18 149 238.


Image: MORE THAN SHELTERS / Thomas Peters