PeaceCraft has won the Henry Van de Velde Award 19 in the category ‘community’. The PeaceCraft project consists of an interactive game and a participatory theatre piece that introduces young people to the personal experiences of refugees. The public can vote until 21 December for PeaceCraft to also win the Henry van de Velde Public Gold Award 19.

PeaceCraft: Interactive Game and Theatre Piece

Flanders is characterised by a growing diversity. Migration and integration are central themes in our current society. Why and how do refugees come to Flanders? How do they build a new future? What role can young Flemish people play in all this? Thanks to PeaceCraft, young people can work with these questions in a creative and impressive way. They follow the route of a refugee in the game and meet refugees on the scene during the participatory theatre performance.

The game and the theatre performance were created during labs and workshops organised by !DROPS with young refugees that are staying at the refugee centre of the Rode Kruis.

U Move 4 Peace (UM4P) created a play about a meeting between two seventeen-year-olds from completely different background. The actors are professionals with a migration background. The audience is actively involved and enters the stage to test strategies.

!DROPS took it upon itself to create an online game, in collaboration with Poppins and Wayne. The game turns the user’s desktop into the smartphone of Sara or Mohammed, who has to travel from Syria or Afghanistan to Europe. As a player, you are confronted with the choices these young people have also struggled with. You quickly start to realise how important your smartphone is when you’re running for your life.

“PeaceCraft is an interactive wake-up call for young people. Based on true facts, made by and with young refugees. It made me speechless.

Winner in the Category ‘Community’

Since 1994, the Henry van de Velde Awards have been highlighting and honouring Flemish designers, companies, products, projects, and services that reach solutions through design with a positive impact on the economy and society.

PeaceCraft is the surprising Henry van de Velde Award Winner in the category ‘community’. In our project, a vulnerable group that is constantly discussed and written about gets to speak for itself. Thanks to that platform, they can clarify their story and open up young people’s minds. The recognition of that social engagement by means of a public prize would be the icing on the cake.

The public can vote from 15 November until 21 December to choose its favourite. The project with the largest number of votes will win the Henry van de Velde Public Gold Award 19. The winner will be announced on 29 January 2019 during the presentation of the Henry van de Velde Awards 19 in BOZAR.

The People Behind PeaceCraft

PeaceCraft is the most socially engaged winner of these Henry van de Velde Awards. The game and the theatre piece are based on the stories of young refugees and have been realised thanks to the expertise of !DROPS and U Move 4 Peace.

!DROPS is a social innovation agency. As a creative collective, we tackle important social issues. We create innovative solutions for the social challenges we all encounter. We facilitate, we create, we think, we do, and we see the cultural and digital worlds as tools to enhance positive change. We work on a multidisciplinary level, and we believe in ‘the power of the people’. We collaborate to develop long-term results for a bright 21st century. We simultaneously work close to our home and beyond international borders.

U Move 4 Peace is the artistic wing of peace movement Pax Christi Vlaanderen. The organisation is expertise centre Theater van de Onderdrukten, a type of participatory theatre.

Poppins & Wayne is a contemporary creative team. With Wim’s expertise as a game designer and Yasmin’s writer DNA, they focus on projects in which story and technology reinforce each other. From games to virtual reality, from 2D to 3D. From advertising to education. Their creed? When story meets technology, imagination comes to life.