Help Desk makes beautiful furniture using sustainably sourced East African hard woods and we use the profits to help under-equipped Ugandan schools by furnishing classrooms with new desks and better infrastructure.


Before becoming a Masters of Architecture Student, Help Desk Founder Brice Aarrestad lived in Jinja, Uganda for nearly a year-and-a-half as a designer and construction manager. While there, he was struck with the country’s natural beauty and hard working citizens- he witnessed many difficulties too. There are thousands of Ugandan students struggling to learn in classrooms with inadequate desks, poor lighting and leaking roofs. At the same time, high unemployment is stunting the growth of communities. And the beautiful Ugandan forests are being lost at alarming rates.


Help Desk is a unique organization that will help solve these problems by exporting and selling high-quality furniture to Americans through the Help Desk website and retail partners. Help Desk will provide stable jobs, sources materials responsibly and gives back to schools in need.


Help Desk’s pilot phase is being funded jointly by the University of Minnesota College of Design and the University of Minnesota Acara Institute.