And finally… Scottish architect designs learning centre for Maasai tribe

An architect from Angus has designed a school and cultural centre for the Maasai tribe in Kenya.

Jonathan Reeve, 39, who is originally from Enniskillen and who works with the Voigt Partnership in Arbroath, jetted off to Kenya this week for a week-long trip during which he will present his designs for the project at the Maasai Conference in Amboseli.

Drawing inspiration from Maasai jewellery, Reeve has designed a building split into three parts – a school, cultural centre and office. The centre, which will boast views of Mount Kilimanjaro, will help educate local children and adults.

Construction is due to get underway in August.

Jonathan Reeve told The Courier: “At an early stage I realised this was a special project.

“Almost everyone around the world has heard of the Maasai tribe, and to incorporate elements in a design brief such as ‘views to Mount Kilimanjaro’ and ‘walls to deter elephant stampedes’ are not what you are used to.

“This is a sort of investigative trip and will involve speaking to the local architect, meeting potential builders, visiting the site etc.

“As an architect to be involved in designing a unique building for the Maasai tribe was a privilege and honour.

“This is a unique opportunity to be involved with a charity to not only provide design intervention to a poor community, but to be involved in its realisation.

“I hope to travel back to Kenya in August to assist with the build alongside the other volunteers from across the globe.”

The idea behind the building began last year when two US charities – My Chosen Vessel and Amor Ministries – partnered with a vision of creating a new building in Kenya which had been desperately needed by the Maasai people.

Jonathan first encountered Amor Ministries whilst volunteering on a house-building project in South Africa in 2015 and was invited by the charities to use his architectural and creative input in the Kenya School project.

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