Ukumbi* is a Finnish non-governmental organization established in 2007. Our mission is to offer architectural services to communities in need. Ukumbi believes that architecture can be a powerful way to mitigate poverty. We help the women, children and young people in disadvantaged communities build the shelters, schools and orphanages they desperately need. With the help of your donations Ukumbi can help these communities build – not only their physical environment, but also their dignity and self-esteem.

Our architectural strategy employs the use of local and traditional architectural techniques and customs during the planning and the construction process.

By working with local volunteers within the community Ukumbi is able to maintain the cultural integrity of its projects and gain the support of the community. Ukumbi empowers communities by involving them.

Ukumbi’s architectural projects are ecologically sustainable. We use locally manufactured, recycled or grown building materials whenever possible and strive to have a low carbon footprint.

2009 Ukumbi received the Finnish State Award for Arts.


*) Ukumbi is swahili, the most widely spoken language in sub-Saharan Africa. It means a forum, veranda and a meeting place for dialogue and interaction.

Women's Centre in Senegal
Courtyard in Women's Centre
Sowing class in Women's Centre
Hollmén Reuter Sandman exhibition at Venice Biennale 2016
Kouk Khleang Youth Center front facade
Children playing in the KKYC terrace
Enjoying the Shelter House terrace
Kwieco Shelter House courtyard
Sra Pou Vocational School
Sra Pou Vocational School
Sra Pou Vocational School
Women's Centre in Senegal