The Care Collective
Our proposal for a mental wellness center in Poughkeepsie developed from the idea that our senses never turn off and continue to absorb stimuli that can trigger trauma. Combined with the knowledge that our site had the highest rates of poverty and immigrant community members, we wanted to address systemic barriers that prevent people from accessing care. The programming of our center, in addition to medical care, provides childcare, legal aid, job training, and food access. Our massing organized four nodes of care across the landscape, which included a community center, a healthcare center, in-patient housing, and a café with an attached greenhouse. All of these nodes are supported by a healing garden that engages nature to facilitate a new engagement with medical spaces. The form of the buildings brings the landscape in, puncturing them with pockets of greenery. Ultimately, this proposal and the programming imagine healing moving beyond typical forms of medical care to a more engaged understanding of how we can achieve equity in wellness.