The Care Mobiles
design for social impact
SCAD Secession finalist 2018
The Care Mobiles is a system of buses that provides stability, permanence and safety through feelings of hope and belonging to homeless women and children in Savannah.
To redesign an existing physical space
To create a sense of stability, permanence and safety through feelings of hope and belonging to homeless women and children in Savannah.
The chronic homeless population in Savannah has been steadily increasing, in spite of government efforts towards affordable housing. There is a need to provide a space for both physical and emotional wellbeing of the homeless community in Savannah.
Since 2015, the number of homeless women and children in Savannah has increased.
While the Chatham Savannah Authority for the Homeless works hard to create more housing facilities, there are very few organisations that focus on just women and children in homeless camps. After conducting interviews with volunteers, sponsors and the homeless in Chatham County, there appeared a need for a space with low startup capital that catered to physical, psychological and social wellbeing.
After looking into initiatives for the homeless across the world, I conducted primary research in the form of observations, interviews and ethnographic studies.
The idea of using old Savannah public buses came about because of their ability to move through homeless camps in a non-invasive manner. The interior had the potential to hold semi-permanent elements that could extend into the outside environment it was parked in.
A combination of handwritten script and sans serif typeface Basic Sans were used under a symbol for a roof to depict stability.
Simple icons with text were used to ensure recognition for both the literate and the illiterate. The forms were designed to be approachable. Although they dealt with the serious issue of homelessness, the symbols were created to inspire feelings of hope and belonging.
A bright yellow tied together a system of three colors that stood for different activities: green for learning, orange for hot meals and blue for sanitation and cleanliness.
The Care Mobiles
is a system of three buses.
The Learning Mobile conducts workshops for women to encourage them to apply for jobs within the community, and provides an activity space for their children to learn. It houses mailbox cubbies for people without permanent addresses to receive their mail.
The Hot-meal Mobile fosters a sense of community and encourages people to cook within the converted interior of the bus, and eat outside together.
The Bath Mobile provides access to showers and bathrooms, to encourage cleanliness. Its entrances have a wheelchair accessible ramp for the disabled.