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News Release.

News Release

University of Minnesota College of Design faculty to visit camps in Haiti

More than one million Haitians are currently homeless and living in makeshift conditions

Media Note: Media availability with faculty and ARC president Daniel Wordsworth will take place 9:30-10 a.m. Thursday, April 15 at American Refugee Committee world headquarters, Loring Park Office Building, Suite 204, 430 Oak Grove St., Minneapolis.

Media are asked to arrive by 9:15 a.m. and RSVP to or (612) 626-1720 if planning to attend. Street parking and meters available on 15th St. Parking is also available in a parking lot across the street from the Loring Park Office Building, accessible from Oak Grove St. If using this lot, ARC will need your license plate number to register you as a guest.

Contacts: Laura Weber, College of Design,, (612) 625-6566
Jeff Falk, University News Service,, (612) 626-1720
Therese Gales, American Refugee Committee,, (612) 221-5161

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (04/14/2010) —Three University of Minnesota College of Design architecture faculty will travel to Haiti Friday through Tuesday, April 16-20, as volunteers with the Minneapolis-based American Refugee Committee to assess camps for people displaced by the Jan. 12 earthquake.

Professors Leslie Van Duzer, Ozayr Saloojee and John Comazzi will assess the shelter and community living conditions of two camps managed by the American Refugee Committee, and, subsequently, consult on how to best help displaced communities to rebuild.

“The people of Haiti have experienced unthinkable trauma, seeing their homes and communities destroyed and living in makeshift camps, a state that poses a range of challenges,” says Van Duzer. “Our goal will be to provide workable solutions to help individuals and communities address current camp and shelter challenges and rebuild in an safe and effective manner.”

Over the course of five days, the faculty will visit ARC managed camps in Port au Prince and Fond Parisien. They will observe the overall camp structure and learn about access to water and sanitation, the living spaces, how health care services are delivered, the availability of child-friendly spaces, recreational areas and provisions for temporary educational facilities.

“The rainy season will bring mudslides, floods and a rapid spread of disease,” said Daniel Wordsworth, president of the American Refugee Committee. “Shelter is a critical issue, and we’re pleased to partner with the University of Minnesota to look at ways to provide safe and healthy living conditions for the people of Haiti.”

For more information about the American Refugee Committee, visit

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