Working together to achieve more with the RIBA

The Royal Institute of British Architecture (RIBA) and the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust first joined forces over 20 years ago to encourage new and experimental architectural talent through the awarding of the Stephen Lawrence Prize and the founding of the annual Stephen Lawrence Memorial lecture.  Since then, our relationship has gone from strength to strength, and in 2018, the RIBA hosted several events to mark the Trust’s anniversary year, including a very special gala dinner and auction which raised over £100,000.

Now, as part of their commitment to making architecture more inclusive and diverse and to mark Stephen Lawrence Day, we are excited to announce plans to expand our working relationship to have an even greater impact.

The RIBA is committed to broadening access to architecture and supporting the Trust’s aim to create a fairer society in which everyone, regardless of their background, can flourish. I look forward to embarking on the next stage of our journey.

Ben Derbyshire, President of the RIBA

We will work together on educational projects in schools across the country, building upon the RIBA’s National School Programme, which has reached over 21,500 children across the UK, and the national profile of Stephen Lawrence Day. The RIBA also plan to fund a full-time member of staff at the Trust to lead on partnership projects, and the RIBA’s regional teams will help the Trust to expand their reach outside of London.

Both the Trust and the RIBA believe that architecture as a profession and the built environment around us should reflect and celebrate the rich cultural diversity of the people living in our communities. As well as inspiring the next generation who wish to pursue architecture as a career, we encourage all young people to investigate the built environment that surrounds them daily and consider the role that architecture plays in creating and sustaining cohesive communities. Good design of the built environment can promote connections and communication, and better encompass the diverse mix of people, functions, and uses with in a community.

In celebration of Stephen Lawrence Day, the RIBA came to the Trust to speak to two of our SLCT Alumni and the Chair of the RIBA’s equality, diversity and inclusion expert panel (Architects for Change) Femi Oresanya about the impact the Trust has on young, aspiring architects. Watch the video below to find out more.