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PORTFOLIO

STEFANIE DHILLON Through design, my mission is to create sustainable systems and spaces that inspire human interaction and good will for the community and environment.

Los Angeles, CA

Tel. 323 893 7833 Web. www.stefaniedhillon.com Email. hello@stefaniedhillon.com

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SOCIAL IMPACT research + design

My vision is to provide meaning ful and authentic support to community partners, together with professional design, to present viable community led outcomes. To best respond to a community, I need to be engaged in local advocacy efforts, working side by side with community leaders and grassroots activists. My work is informed by deep partnerships with local organizers and activists

Los Angeles, CA

Tel. 323 893 7833 Web. www.stefaniedhillon.com email. hello@stefaniedhillon.com

to give the community a “place at the table� in decision making; to promote sustainable and equitable community development. I promote community participatory design-build processes, to foster connections between existing programs and new solutions, empowering the community with a sense of ownership and engagement.


ABOUT

A Human-Centered Approach for Social Change I believe in using a transparent, participatory process which ensures that my solutions reflect user wishes and needs. By giving users an active role in the design process, a sense of lasting ownership is created.


I seek inspiration from the motivations behind behaviors and use both qualitative and quantitative data to fuel insights for opportunity.

My practice involves identifying patterns and opportunities, and using statistics and numerical data to substantiate my hypotheses.


By creating live prototypes and in-field experiments, my solutions evolve based on real-time feedback.


PROJEC T B IOG R A PH Y

This project began with an immersive two-week field research trip to Altos del Pino, Bogotå, Colombia– an informal community with very limited water access, where households have access to a small water pipeline for only one hour, every eight days. We worked alongside families and community partners to uncover needs and identify design opportunities around water, to help overcome the cycle of poverty. Our team established empathy and deep connections with local families, and gained understanding of individual needs, constraints, and aspirations through participatory, qualitative, and quantitative research methodologies.


S TE FA N I E D H I LLO N

Title Designer, Grant Writer

Client Community of Altos del Pino, Colombia

Date 2014

A participatory approach engaged community members in cultivating viable outcomes. Co-creation was our primary focus, we shared our design opportunities, prototypes, and every step of our process with our NGO partners and the community of Altos del Pino to understand their feedback and ideas; so we could solve problems together. At every stage of the project, we Skyped or messaged online with the families from Altos del Pino to constantly get feedback and make improvements.


H U E R TA C A Z U C A LEARNING GARDEN 2014

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A LT O S D E L P I N O

Altos del Pino presented ideal conditions to work with a cross-section of families who live in conditions of extreme poverty and are affected by systemic challenges due to lack of access to running water services.

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COMMUNIT Y OF A LTOS D E L P I N O, CO LO M B I A


Not only is the community in need of solutions based around water, the children of Altos del Pino are in need of educational tools to learn values and enhance their ability to focus. The community lacks safe green spaces for kids to play and explore.


KEY ELEMENTS OUTDOOR LEARNING

LIFE SKILLS

NUTRITION

OWNERSHIP

Children need an outdoor environment that can provide them with space, both upwards and outwards, and places to explore, experiment, discover, be active and healthy, and to develop their physical and intellectual capabilities.

By growing and nurturing a plant, children learn valuable life skills such as responsibility, patience, kindness, delayed gratification and self-confidence. Working together in a garden, children learn teamwork, and problem-solving skills, and enhance their inventiveness and resourcefulness.

Many children living in informal settlements do not have access to fresh fruit and vegetables on a daily basis - which is essential to their growth and development. By growing, harvesting and preparing their own food, healthy eating habits are reinforced for a prolonged amount of time, creating a lasting shift in nutritional awareness.

Most informal settlements lack a feeling of permanence or ownership. The key to creating pride of ownership in the community is to build something for the community by community members. This ensures that the space will be nurtured and will continue to make an impact for generations.


H U E R TA C A Z U C A L E A R N I N G G A R D E N

Title Designer, Grant Writer

P R O B L E M S O LV I N G The community of Altos del Pino does not have running water. Each household has access to a water source for one hour, every eight days. To create and maintain a community garden, ample water is needed. From my research, I discovered that many of the households that only have a few members were dumping out their water on the eighth day to have empty containers to use for their new water pick up. Many of these households are comprised of elderly people. An effective solution was to create a courier service which assists elderly members in the community with acquiring their weekly fresh water supply and by taking their old water to the garden. Water for the garden is now donated by community members, adding value to the project.

Client Community of Altos del Pino, Colombia

Date 2014


H U E R TA C A Z U C A L E A R N I N G G A R D E N 2014

Title Designer, Grant Writer

Client Community of Altos del Pino, Colombia

Date 2014

“ Youth gain an understanding of where food comes from and its value by gardening and learning the gardening planning process. �


IMPAC T

Inspiring change in the community Through a generous grant from the Muhammad Ali Center for Peace, the idea for the garden was implemented. The garden is located between both community center buildings in Altos del Pino. Since 2014, over 200 children in the community have participated in the garden through lessons and gardening activities. The garden is open for everyone in the community to use. Members in the community are welcome to take herbs and vegetables as they wish. Produce from the garden goes to families in the community and also supplies the local soup kitchen, which feeds over 100 children per day.


H U E R TA C A Z U C A LEARNING GARDEN 2014

This poster was created to promote awareness of projects that focus on water poverty and co-creation. Cumulus Mumbai An international conference on water sustainability. Mumbai, India 2015


Cumulus Mumbai Photos: Penny Herschovitz 2015


Primary School + Community Flex Space


PROJEC T B IOG R A PH Y

After the garden was built in the community of Altos del Pino, a greater need was presented. Because the children in the community lack adequate educational facilities and curricula, a vision was born for a new school that would also provide flexible use spaces that are available for community activities and workshops.


S TE FA N I E D H I LLO N

Title Designer

Client Community of Altos del Pino, Colombia

Date 2016

Building the future of the community through education and ownership There are over 300 children in the community who lack proper educational spaces, tools and curricula. Many of the children in this community have attention problems, they have trouble staying focused which leads to decreased learning abilities and social disadvantages. Many of the children in the community end up on the streets. By creating an educational environment that focuses on outdoor learning and a student-centered approach, children actually thrive through innovative exploration and adaptive learning. They find new ways to solve problems, they are engaged and challenged in new ways which leads to increased education and greater self-worth.


Outdoor learning and play environments stimulate the diversity of children’s play experience and contribute to their healthy development.


KEY ELEMENTS STUDENT CENTERED LEARNING

OUTDOOR LEARNING

G A RDE N SPACE S

LOCAL BUILDING

Classrooms focused on active learning vs. passive learning. A shift in focus of instruction from teacher to student.

Promoting an active and healthy lifestyle, children learn better in outdoor environments. Grades are better and overall health is improved from learning outdoors.

Children gain valuable life skills, healthy nutritional habits and boost self-confidence when they are part of a garden project.

This community is an informal settlement and does not have paved roads. Local materials and building methods are important to this geography and site.


N AT I V E P R I M A R Y S C H O O L + C O M M U N I T Y F L E X S P A C E 2016

Title Designer

Client Community of Altos del Pino, Colombia

Date 2016

“ The outdoor environment has massive potential for learning. �


N AT I V E P R I M A R Y S C H O O L + C O M M U N I T Y F L E X S P A C E

Title Designer, Grant Writer

FLE X I B LE US E S PACE S All of the spaces on the school campus are designed to be flexible for use by everyone in the community. During the day, the space is used as a school. In the evening and on weekends, the buildings are available for workshops, job-training, and family related activities.

Client Community of Altos del Pino, Colombia

Date 2016


N AT I V E P R I M A R Y S C H O O L

A flexible, multi-use space with ample outdoor space.

2016

School Model, 1/8” - 1’0” scale Stefanie Dhillon 2016


MODEL OF N AT I V E S C H O O L


N AT I V E P R I M A R Y S C H O O L

PROJEC T SEQUE NCE

2016

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C O O R D I N AT E

A P P LY F O R

SECURE

LOCAL

BUILD

COMPLETE

TEAM

FUNDING

SITE

F A B R I C AT I O N

ON SITE

CONSTRUC TION


P OTE NTI A L PA RTN E RS


BioMarine Traveller

TM


PROJEC T B IOG R A PH Y

Ever present environmental changes to water ways and aquatic ecosystems advocate the need for marine scientists to be in the field. In order for scientists to adequately conduct research and collect specimens, a mobile laboratory space is essential to their fieldwork. Many of the sites that they work in are vulnerable, remote and often precarious and scientists spend multiple days and nights there.


S TE FA N I E D H I LLO N

Title Designer + Researcher

Client Marine Biologists

Date 2013

Changing the nature of specimen collection by providing a mobile laboratory Marine scientists spend an average of about 300 days per year travelling up and down the North American west coast to extensively monitor algae levels. Testing of samples is performed on site due to the delicate nature of the microorganisms. Many of these onsite laboratories are constructed using pop-up canopies and folding tables or car trunks, which leaves scientists begging for a weatherproof, sustainable solution.


Marine biologists are often operating makeshift lab stations on site, an environment that is unfortunately ideal for specimen degradation and cross contamination.


KEY ELEMENTS M O B I L E L A B O R AT O R Y

S E L F - S U S TA I N I N G

S Y S T E M S A P P L I C AT I O N

MODUL A R A ND COMPAC T

The marine biolog y field necessitates mobility. Scientists are constantly on the move; studying various marine environments often, traveling far distances to gather specimens, conducting research on-site, and working remotely to provide information to stationary laboratory facilities.

A self-sustaining laboratory is essential for the ability to conduct research at any time in any environment. With a lack of power sources and water supply in many of the sites, a mobile structure that can power itself and provide fresh water is imperative to successful laboratory operations.

An integrated application is fundamental to structure deployment, navigation, communication, research and documentation, analysis and management of on-board systems.

A modular system provides access to specific compartments and facilities as needed without having to deploy the entire structure. Photovoltaic canopies that fold geometrically allow each module to collapse laterally.


D R I F T B I O M A R I N E T R AV E L L E R 2013

Title Designer + Researcher

Client Marine Biologists

Date 2013

DRIFT CLOSED VIEW

DRIFT BioMarine Traveller is a pod system which is transported to a site and deployed. An automated unlocking system is engaged and one to all sections of the Traveller may be opened. DRIFT has transformable furniture integrated into each wall, including dual work stations, jump seats that double as a sofa, a rotating media wall, bed with pull- down shelf, wash station with collapsible sink, a shower and compostable toilet.

DRIFT CLOSED VIEW

On-board systems include four hydro-power turbines, photovoltaic canopies, solar water heating, desalination system and an algae collection system. DRIFT is self sustaining, generating its own energ y and providing its own fresh water supply.


D R I F T B I O M A R I N E T R AV E L L E R 2013

Title Designer + Researcher

Client Marine Biologists

Date 2013

“ Successful preservation of tissue samples is a prerequisite for long field studies in remote areas. �


D R I F T - S Y S T E M S A P P L I C AT I O N

Title Designer + Researcher

A P P L I C AT I O N An application has been developed to manage and provide in-depth information for each digital and mechanical on-board system, providing information for energy usage and storage, deployment, navigation and biological statistics. This application provides real-time weather and tidal information, access to online libraries, and connects to other DRIFT Travellers to share and cross reference information.

Client Marine Biologists

Date 2013


D R I F T B I O M A R I N E T R AV E L L E R 2013

School Model, 1/8” - 1’0” scale Stefanie Dhillon


MODEL OF DRIFT B I O M A R I N E T R AV E L L E R


PROJEC T B IOG R A PH Y The question of creating a fully sustainable vacation home on the banks of Glen Canyon, Utah was married with the heart and environmental values of Patagonia - a company that has a love of wild and beautiful places and demands participation in the fight to save them.


S TE FA N I E D H I LLO N

Title Designer

Client Patagonia (concept)

Date 2013

An off the grid concept for exploring Glen Canyon’s wondrous and reviving landscape Working in coalition with the mission and values of the outdoor company Patagonia, this home focuses on self-sustainability, exploration, and simplicity. Lake Powell was created by the flooding of Glen Canyon and the completion of the Glen Canyon Dam in 1966. While Patagonia remains one of the largest activists for the demolition of dams in the United States, awareness for preservation of the Glen Canyon landscape and ecosystems remain an ever present concern. As Lake Powell reservoir has declined, dozens of miles of the main canyon and hundreds of miles of side canyons have been exposed for the first time in decades. Ecosystems are healing. People are beginning to explore the emerging backcountry.


The landscape of Lake Powell /Glen Canyon is vast and untouched; an environment indicative of preservation, free from infrastructure.


KEY ELEMENTS OFF THE GRID

N I G H T E X P L O R AT I O N

S U S TA I N A B L E F U T U R E

A D V E N T U R E + R E C R E AT I O N

Harnessing the energy of the sun, collecting rainwater and recycling greywater are essential in this environment. Auxiliary elements needed for an off the grid home are a geothermal water heating system, high efficiency appliances and advanced composting toilet systems.

In this majestic desert oasis, exploring the constellations, planets and galaxies is a wondrous and inspiring experience. Meteor showers are abundant in the dark night sky.

With ecosystems returning to the canyon after decades of drought, now is the time for the protection and continued restoration of these beautiful lands. Exploring the wild and breathtaking landscape in Glen Canyon is fundamental, and is useful in creating awareness for its environmental reclamation.

The nearly 2,000 miles of shoreline that wrap around Glen Canyon are part of endless adventures on the water and vast surrounding landscape. Glen Canyon offers more than 1.2 million acres of unparalleled opportunities for land- and water-based recreation.


PA N O R A M A H O US E 2013

Title Designer

Client Patagonia (concept)

Date 2013

“ The remarkable potential for large-scale ecological restoration in Glen Canyon is already apparent. �


PA N O R A M A H O US E 2014

Napkin sketches


MODEL OF PA N O R A M A H O U S E


Stefanie Dhillon Los Angeles, CA

Tel. 323 893 7833 Web. www.stefaniedhillon.com email. hello@stefaniedhillon.com


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