Showcasing the Award via London’s HQ

Published: 2 Jul 2018

KLC Design school

The Foundation has partnered with a leading career-focused school of design - KLC Design School - on a pro-bono basis, to find new, exciting ways to bring the Award to life within the Award’s London headquarters, known as Award House.

Award House acts as the global base for the Award and regularly welcomes members of the Award family, friends and supporters from all over the world. At present, however, the space does not showcase any examples of the Award in action or reflect the inspirational activity going on in more than 130 countries and territories around the world.

As the Award has continued to grow, the Foundation’s staffing requirements have also changed and the design partnership offered an opportunity to address and accommodate both growing headcount and also reflect the Award more effectively within Award House.


The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award Foundation’s Secretary General, John May, says: “The Foundation has always admired KLC School of Design and the calibre of its students. Giving graduates the opportunity to put their training into practice on real projects resonates well with the values of the Award. As we want to ensure we keep our budgets as low as possible, so all possible funding goes to enabling as many young people as possible to be able to do the Award, a pro-bono based project helped the Foundation overcome budget constraints.”

On working with the Foundation, KLC said: “First of all, of course, it was a great honour to have the chance to collaborate with such an established and highly respected organisation. As communication between us all developed and we learnt more about the extent of the work of the Foundation and the work the Award staff team does, we also found all sorts of synergies with our own values which made it feel a particularly interesting and harmonious partnership, especially considering the launch of our 'Design Changes Lives Foundation'.”

The competition presented an exciting opportunity for all KLC Interior Design Alumni and recent graduates, to propose designs for the office and public spaces within the Award’s headquarters in London. The brief required designs that successfully address space planning, specifications for furniture, joinery, wall finishes (paint and graphics) and lighting. In addition, the refurbishment needed to showcase the Award’s brand and the inspirational work being done on a daily basis in communities worldwide, helping young people to find their purpose, passion and place in the world.

After various site visits, the applicants submitted briefs that needed to include a concept / mood board, a preliminary sketch plan and ideas for sponsorship. Submissions were narrowed down to three final groups-Yvonne Doornbos; Olga Jarvis and Maria Loginova; Anu Chatterjee and Lucia Sasso who were all invited to Award House to present their proposals to the Foundation staff and a panel consisting of both Foundation and KLC representatives.concept mood board

Following judging, the Foundation is thrilled to announce the winners of the competition: Anu Chatterjee and Lucia Sasso. On receiving the news, the pair said: “In terms of the design, our basic concept was to create a place that felt more connected and allowed staff to work with greater agility. By breaking the internal walls between office spaces, we wanted to demonstrate the charity’s transparency and the general buzz of the office. We’re really thrilled to have won the pitch and very excited to get to work!"

Jenny Gibbs, Principal of KLC and Samantha Miller, Senior Design Lecturer, who were both on the judging panel, said of the chosen project: “Anu and Lucia’s proposal is ambitious, thoughtful and creative. They confidently challenged the brief with clear rationales and an excellent understanding of their client and it seemed to us that their ideas have helped the team at the Award develop a deeper understanding of what design can achieve and we fully expect that together, they will create spaces that staff and visitors will be excited and inspired by.”

John May concludes: “We were genuinely inspired by Anu and Lucia’s proposal, which had a delightful theme and really worked to create a vibrant new space within Award House. We very much look forward to working with them to bring this to life over the course of the next 12 – 18 months.”

The refurbishment is set to take place in May 2019.