Friendship Court Youth Design “The Mountains of Friendship Court”

If you walk around Friendship Court you won’t see signs of construction yet, but you will “The Mountains of Friendship Court.”

The structure is a multipurpose area for and designed by Friendship Court youth, including members of the Youth Leadership Team.

The finished product was a partnership of Public Workshop, UVA Facilities Management and Piedmont Housing staff.

UVA Facilities Management pre-cut most of the materials and youth from Friendship Court and other volunteers worked to put everything together. Alex Gilliam and Public Workshop facilitated the conversations around design and helped bring the youth’s design goals to life.

Some of the young residents at Friendship Court came out to work with Public Workshop, UVA Facilities Management and Piedmont Housing Community Management create a space just for them.

“We were excited by the advocacy that the original teens were taking,” Gilliam said, noting specifically Youth Leadership team members Daemond Nowlin and Tyquan Mayo.

The build day saw a few weather and logistical setbacks but on May 24, everyone was able to come together and complete the project. Participants from the Friendship Court community were largely students in middle school and high school. Some of their duties included painting, putting the area together, beautifying the work area once the build was complete and of course testing out the new area.

Overall, Gilliam called the build a success.

The area includes a see-saw, slide, area for reading or other quiet activities and more.