"Refugee camps are the cities of tomorrow" By Killian Kleinschmidt
Inés: "This evenings lecture at the Tolentini Closter, by Killian Kleinschmidt was very interesting for its relation with our approach to the workshop. Killian Kleinschmidt is a former member of the UN that, from 2013 to 2014, acted as the director of the refugee camp of Zataari, in Jordan. He explained us how the Zataari camp evolved from a refugee camp into the permanent settlement with its own economie. The camp was established in 2012 by the Jordanian Government and the UN to give refugee to 3.000 people escaping from the Syrian civil war. Within less than a year, the population had grown till 10.000 people and, what Killian called the Revolution against the arrogance of aid, happened: there were demonstrations, robberies and protests against the living conditions in the camp. Killian understood that refugees coming from a war zone have lost their sense of community and trust and managed to establish a chain of communication with them to find a way to bring these values back. He divided the camp in administrative districts, brought electricity to the streets and encouraged the growth of all sorts of small business *from hairdressers to bicycle shops * for its pacifying effect. He also collaborated with the City of Amsterdam and the VNG International for the future planning of the city. At the moment the Zaatari refugee camp is moving away from a model of top-down service provision, as happens usually in refugee camps, into a self-sufficient city."
"He also showed us two very illustrative short movies about the atmosphere at the camp now and about the planning developed with the City of Amsterdam."