Pyramid Wellness Institute

This Engage/Design/Build studio studied the issues surrounding mental illness in New Orleans through the lens of a specific project: the Pyramid Resources Wellness Institute (PRWI). Located in Mid City, PRWI provides treatment services for persons in the greater New Orleans area who are homeless, have mental illness diagnosis, or co-occurring substance use and mental illness. The project partner provides housing assistance and intensive individualized support services under the direction of a treatment team consisting of psychiatrists, psychologists, clinical staff, nurses, support professionals, case managers, and others as needed.

The studio team worked with the staff and residents of the Pyramid House to design their common outdoor space into an area that can adapt to the multiple needs of the residents; a space that can accommodate group meetings, outdoor dining, conflict resolution, activity space, and provides a calming outdoor space for the clients and staff of the facility. Construction of the outdoor space and shade structures were completed in December of 2012.



Project Lead

Emilie Taylor
Abigail Feldman
Sam Richards

Partners

Guardians Institute
RuffWorks Studio
Alembic Community Development

Project Team

Steven Baker
Victoria Bryant
Jose Cotto
Katherine Delacey
Hunter Duplantier
Gage Edwards
Rena Foster
Emily Green
Charlotte Hutton
Baha Javadi
Whitney Jordan
Leslie Katz
Michael Kirschner
Sarah Knapp
Jacob McGregor
Kevin Michniok
Danielle Musselman
Alison Rodberg
Risa Schoenfeld
Guan Wang
Grant Whittaker
William Zink



Mental Wellness Graphic Advocacy

One in six people in the City of New Orleans have a mental illness. While a growing number of people are seeking mental wellness there has been a dramatic decrease in funds both at state and federal levels. While working on a design build project with Pyramid Wellness (here), a mental health treatment facility in Mid City, a small team of students began working on a campaign to raise awareness of this issue, and provide a community resource. The team produced a series of posters, postcards, magnets, stickers, and newspaper ads with information on area resources available, and the prevalence of mental illness in New Orleans, targeted to reach people struggling with mental illness and their families. The resource card lists local treatment providers for those in crisis and also lets people know that they are not alone in dealing with the issues. The team organized a series of distribution days over the summer to place the resources in cornerstores, shelters, and coffee shops throughout the city.


Partners

Pyramid Wellness Institute

Project Lead

Emilie Taylor

Project Team

Jose Cotto
Emily Green
Baha Javadi
Alison Rodberg