“The Inspirational Story Behind Constructing a Performing Arts Center in Africa’s Largest Refugee Settlement”

“Project leaders are optimistic that this pioneering, state-of-the-art performance center in a refugee camp will enrich the lives of its residents with joy and contribute to a more comprehensive approach to aid delivery.”

The Bidi Bidi Music & Arts Centre, designed to be a beacon of creativity within Uganda’s Bidi Bidi refugee camp, is a groundbreaking initiative by To.org in collaboration with architecture studios Hassell and LocalWorks. Scheduled to break ground in April 2022, this centre aims to provide a nurturing platform for the immense talent residing in the camp, home to over 270,000 South Sudanese refugees​​.

Nachson Mimran, CEO and co-founder of To.org, emphasized the project’s mission to shift the narrative around refugees. He recognized the vast, untapped talent within these communities – ranging from athletics to the arts – and sought to provide the necessary support structures through this initiative​​.

This center, a joint effort with the Playing for Change Foundation and NGO SINA Loketa, is envisioned as both a community hub and a creative incubator. The design includes a versatile open-air amphitheatre, a recording studio, music training spaces, and essential community facilities like a tree nursery, vegetable garden, and freshwater provisions, addressing crucial needs in the face of worsening food shortages​​.

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