Technology turns aspiring architect’s dreams into virtual reality
Growing up in Aleppo, teenager Mohammed Kteish dreamed of becoming an architect.
Teenager Mohammed Kteish dreamt of becoming an architect as he was growing up in the Syrian city of Aleppo.
He spent his free time making paper models of buildings on the rooftop of the family home. When the war began, he moved into his father’s workshop.
Eventually he was prevented from going to school by the fighting and spent his time creating a model of his home city. He recreated Aleppo’s famous buildings and blended them with modern architecture to create a futuristic vision.
In 2015, Mohammed and his family were forced to flee to Turkey, but he refused to give up his dreams and continued to make his paper models.
Now those dreams have become a virtual reality project called “Future Aleppo”, the project tours international festivals and, with support from UNHCR, Mohammed, 16, carries out workshops with Syrian and Iraqi refugee schoolchildren.
Under his guidance, the children create buildings out of paper, which are transformed into a virtual city that they can then view through headsets.
“These workshops are really important for us as, in the future, we will return to our countries and rebuild them,” Mohammed told UNHCR
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*The Future Aleppo project is supported by UNHCR. For more information, please visit www.futurealeppo.com.
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) was established on 14 December 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly. The agency is mandated to lead and coordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee issues. It strives to ensure that everyone has the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another state, with the option to voluntarily return home when conditions are conducive for return, integrate locally or resettle to a third country. UNHCR has twice won the Nobel Peace Prize, in 1954 for its ground-breaking work in helping the refugees of Europe, and in 1981 for its worldwide assistance to refugees.