The Epic Homes programme is designed to develop support networks by bringing together rural and urban folk through the act of building homes, leading to the development of cooperative, resilient and sustainable communities.
This competition calls for the design of houses for the Orang Asli of Malaysia.
Orang Asli is a collective term (which means original or first peoples in Malay) for some 18 ethnic groups of less than 180,000 in total who are widely regarded as comprising peninsular Malaysia’s original inhabitants. They are generally divided into three distinct groupings: the Negrito, Senoi and Proto-Malay. While perhaps half of the Orang Asli live in or close to forests, may be involved in hill rice cultivation or traditional hunting and gathering activities, others such as the Orang Seletar and Mah Meri live near the coast and fish. Still others, such as the Jakun, are involved in agriculture with some continuing a semi-nomadic lifestyle, such as the Negritos.
Over the last few years, through shared experiences in Orang Asli community projects, Epic Homes have developed friendships, mutual respect and admiration for their sense of community mindedness, resilience and rich culture that they’ve cultivated through generations.