What if we have all the solutions to our problems already here? What if we do not have to wait for someone to come and help us? What if we already have all the resources and materials to co-create the spaces we dream to live in? What if creating transformation can be fun instead of a drag?
Our objective is to increase resilience in low-income and more isolated shanty-towns in the global South by setting up community-driven, co-designed projects, co-constructed (re-)using local resources. The ecologically-sound solutions are developed in a short time after mobilizing its citizens by implementing the Brazilian Oasis Game, which with this project we aim to scale-across strongly.
* Elos and the Oasis Game
Instituto Elos has developed and applied over the last 10 years a game of transformation that mobilized communities to co-design, co-create and celebrate projects on community-level that are build using their own local resources, using their own talents, based on the power of collective dreaming.
This game of transformation is called the Oasis Game and is a playful intervention of about 7 days, that creates serious results. The game involves 20 to 30 players and communities, bringing together people from many different areas of society such as NGOs, local government, nearby businesses and the community itself. It was created to be applied at no cost and in a fully cooperative way so that, together, all participants can accomplish a common goal. The design of the Oasis Game strives to allow all players to be winners, without exception.
The game is developed based on experience of working in participatory ways in the Brazilian favelas of Santos and has been applied in various socially challenging conditions where people have lost hope for better living conditions. The Oasis Game has been applied over 300 times in Brazil and in over 30 other countries, inviting the players and involved community members to materialize their dream-project within two days, resulting in parks, playgrounds, community-centres and much more, all using local materials. For examples check our various videos on https://www.youtube.com/user/InstitutoElosBrasil
This game therefore not only transforms abandoned spaces into lively Oases, but also;
- uses the power of play and game to invite community members to join in peaceful action based on collective values
- strengthens self-confidence of people and community by giving people to power to decide, design and to realize projects together in a direct and fast way
- changes the development paradigm of waiting for government and/or money to come and save people, to opening people’s eyes for their own strength and local opportunities
- stimulates the re-use and upcycling of existing resources and local materials, which directly contributes to lowering impact on the planet.
The Oasis Game has a social effect (empowerment, stronger sense of community) and a physical result (dream is materialized during the process) and is realized in a very short time, which gives confidence to take on bigger challenges together afterwards.
* The power of the facilitator network
The Oasis Game is an excellent invitation for young leaders in communities in the global south to build ecologically sound community-driven solutions as a golden rule of the game is that no money is available for achieving the result, we have to do it what we already have! The game is downloadable for free on our games platform, yet has a higher guarantee of impact if facilitators have had a training.
Over the last 15 years Elos has trained 450 facilitators through our GSA-program. The Guerreiros sem armas (GSA) -program is an experiential international leadership and social entrepreneurship training program offered to youth to provide the tools needed to transform realities anywhere in the world. It is a 290 hour-long program in three different communities in Baixada Santista, with an experienced staff of facilitators and consultants. Participants go in 32 days through the 7 steps philosophy by working in and directly impacting 3 communities in Santos, applying the Oasis Game. GSA is open for 60 participants each course, yet still over 500 community-members, representatives of governments, local businesses, universities, schools and others get engaged in the program. In the last stretch of this training the participants get the challenge to bring this experience home, by applying the gamified version of this facilitated process the Oasis Game. Find more at institutoelos.org/gsa/en/
* Scaling across in the global south;
A large part of the participants come from countries in the southern hemisphere and themselves work and live in deprived communities. They take the experience of applying the 7 steps and the game back home to their countries, which include experience and facilitators present in Latin American (Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Argentina, Bolivia), African (South-Africa, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Guinae Buisau, Lybia) and Asian (Pakistan, India) countries.
With them and with the IDEO challenge we want to focus on applying Oasis in low-income and more isolated shanty-towns, by:
- training new groups of facilitators from Latin America, Africa and Asia in the GSA-program
- setting up regional Oasis trainings in 5 countries to broaden the network of replicators of the Oasis Game and transformative community actions
- in the network over a year set up 15 local Oasis Game over 1,5 year, transforming the lives of thousands of people.
- Through the program come up with 30 new concrete outcomes of community-designed constructions using local resources that are a reference for future projects.