Focusing on providing a space to help combat the rising problem of mental heath and incorporating with the already established community hub.

“This project seeks to restore a sense of community to Fochriw, a once-proud mining village in the South Wales valleys that has been greatly affected by the decline of the mining industry; and whose population suffers from economic problems, a low level of education on average, and high rates of mental health issues. It is located on an undeveloped site in between the village’s football pitch and a small brook that runs through the center of the village.
The football pitch at the north end of the site becomes a focal point where villagers can meet and socialize around a new village pub; while at the south end, the brook becomes a focus of calm and tranquility, with classrooms to accommodate skills courses, bordered by gardens and the sound of flowing water. Dedicated spaces for various mental health therapies, meditation, and private conversations aim to destigmatize the topic of mental health within the community, as well as elevate the existing landscape to become a focus for mindfulness and contemplation.
The proposal aims to span the axis of socialization and isolation; creating places in which all individuals within the village can find somewhere that they belong, both through connecting with other villagers and with nature.”

Contact info:
Ananth Balakrishnan
email – BalakrishnanA2@cardiff.ac.uk

View down the long corridor. Natural light from the skylights and windows reflects off the polished screed floor to create an interesting lighting effect intended to draw people towards the end of the corridor – this is where the classrooms can be found and thus the potential to find a new life-improving hobby or skill.
Small perspective showing the connection between the pub’s smoking area and one of the private spaces. The use of the smoking area as an escape from the usually loud and exposed-feeling environment of the pub would provide a smooth transition into the expressly private space, to foster support and care towards mental health issues. 
Small perspective showing the long corridor and group therapy space. To passively raise awareness of mental health issues in Fochriw, the therapy space is placed along the main circulation path in the building, which also makes it easier for people who need therapy to find it.