Birthing Center Prototype

Less than 50% of Childbirths in Uganda occur at a healthcare facility, and although there is a robust tradition of homebirth in Sub-Saharan Africa when complications arise during birth, life-saving resources can be scarce. The Gould Family (GFF) Foundation is dedicated to reducing neonatal and maternal mortality rates and improving the quality of healthcare available at the rural clinics and hospitals in sub-Saharan Africa. To aid in achieving their mission, GFF funded the design of a prototypical facility for a maternal healthcare clinic, and optional maternity wing, allowing local teams to customize the program to their needs. The prototype facility is designed with sustainable and vernacular traditions to ensure they are easily erectable by local teams and provide quality care for women and children.


    Sub Saharan African Birth Centers


    Gould Family Foundation


    Uganda, Sub Saharan Africa


    June 2017

  • TYPE

    Healthcare, prototype


    Architecture, Research


    BHI, Dandelion Africa

Project Success Factors


Local teams will modify the provided documents to adequately serve the site and its healthcare needs. By addressing many of the common design and construction issues seen in rural health facilities in rural health facilities, the prototype aims to design right from the start.


In rural Sub-Saharan Africa, it is commonplace for family members to be part of the care team. The layout of the facility includes covered gathering spaces so that family members can comfortably be part of the process, and provides spaces for cultural activities.


The building addresses environmental comfort and includes sustainable features such as natural lighting, proper ventilation, solar panels, and rainwater collection. The prototype is an open-source document and is meant to be used by local teams as a tool in aiding the design process.

UN Sustainable Development Goals

GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-being
GOAL 5: Gender Equality
GOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
GOAL 10: Reduced Inequality