The Design and Planning of this project for Native American Connections (NAC) was to provide a Wellness Center and Group Home for Native Americans seeking treatment for dependency issues. This was accomplished by working closely with the client and information from the users. SRa also relied on past experience and data for the design and planning. Based on client and user input the project was broken into six areas including: Public, Shared, Living, Admin, Service and Outdoor. Each of these areas were designed to meet the needs of the staff and residents.
The site brought a unique challenge with a 40 foot easement running down the middle of it. This easement space was leveraged to provide a private courtyard. It also created a condition of splitting the building space into two separate buildings. This separation became a benefit in isolating the administrative, guest and patient intake from the residential and treatment spaces.
The focal point of the facility is the main group room known as the “Talking Circle”. This room leverages Native American healing and holistic wellness using the mind, body, and spirit. Integrating a circle in the design, allows residents to be open in a comfortable non-threating environment making everyone equal. It also leverages the Native American use of the four cardinal directions (North, East West & South) in the design to reinforce the journey to health and wellness. This will then provide a path for a long lasting treatment and recovery.