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Streetwise Asia Project in Laos

Partners Anthony Coupe and Felicity Sando undertook a 3-week visit to Laos in November 2007 to review potential projects for Streetwise Asia foundation support. Visiting projects in Luang Prabang and Champasak, with the aim of determining which was best matched to the aims of the foundation, we were able to meet local authorities and work with UNESCO to discuss the merits of each project.

A French colonial style building, a former maternity clinic, in Champasak was selected. Work was already underway to convert the building to a library with support from the Lerici foundation. Funding from the Streetwise Asia foundation allowed the conservation of the building to use appropriate roofing materials and techniques, retaining its cultural significance. The project provided an opportunity for community development in conservation practise and maintaining traditional skills as well as offering educational and literacy outcomes.