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IN HORTUS | Civic Europe
Social inclusion, Community development, We want to promote a participatory approach with a




Who is behind this?

Francesca Volpiana

PAMPAS, il giardino inclusivo


Who is joining forces?

ETIC-Equipe Tecnica Internazionale per la Cooperazione




ENAIP Veneto SFP di Vicenza


Partner Organisation 4 : Agendo società cooperativa sociale Vicenza, Italy


Idea pitch

In Hortus promotes initiatives to raise awareness of socio-economic and environmental issues. Through the involvement of small producers, consumers and people with Down syndrome, we want to create a dialoguing community to regenerate a neighbourhood of our city. We will bring together Zero Km local producers and we will design an online platform to easily buy genuine products. We will organise markets, social dinners, thematic meetings and we will create a seed library to share knowledge.

Where will your project idea take place?

It will take place in Vicenza, a city of 112,000 inhabitants located in the North East of Italy.

What is the specific societal challenge faced by this region?

The major problem of the territory of intervention is certainly determined by the socio-environmental degradation of the area. The heart of the designed initiative is the neighbourhood of Viale Milano, an area of Vicenza populated mostly by first and second-generation immigrants. The whole area is one of the major drug dealing hubs of the city. Our challenge is based on the possibility of making the neighbourhood more attractive and accessible through the involvement of the local inhabitants, and the city more widely, by creating a space of activities and training focused on socio-economic and cultural issues. We want it to be a place of inclusion based on a participatory approach, encouraging greater integration, cohesion, trust, a sense of belonging and civic spirit.

Who are you doing it for?

The beneficiaries of the project are diversified into three target groups, which include small local producers, consumers and disabled people. The idea is based on the possibility of involving these three groups within a terrace, an open and shared space, which overlooks a fourth reality made up of immigrants living in the surrounding buildings. We aim to give voice to each of them, through participatory events where the different stakeholders will find a common and inclusive dialectic. For example, young adults with Down syndrome, already involved in the sale and processing of agricultural products, will participate as sellers in the markets. They will also put in practice their experiences during the themed evenings and social dinners, supporting with table service and in the kitchen.

How do you plan to get there?

We envision the creation of a platform that brings together local producers within a maximum radius of 70 km. This will be supported by an online platform that will allow users to easily buy genuine products at km0. The food shopping will be collected by PAMPAS in the time slot of the established day or delivered with an eco-friendly delivery service - cargo bicycle. We will organise temporary markets, once a month, meetings and thematic workshops (at least 6 per year), dinners / social aperitifs (at least 4 per year). A seed register will be created, with specific sowing and harvesting periods for the exchange, knowledge, protection and diffusion of the native seed variety of our territory.

What are the expected results?

The aim is to activate a short supply chain and a new, ethical, ecological and fair way of producing and consuming food. We want to promote a new form of economy, lasting, sustainable and conscious. Social sector, education, culture and business will be integrated into people's needs. A real fruitful collaboration between beneficiaries and the associations is foreseen. Through thematic meetings, we want to inform about climate change and the fight against environmental deterioration, in addition to developing greater focus on supporting society's most vulnerable groups. The project will continue to sustain itself in the long term through the newly created community, motivated by the desire to change, the passion for food, ethical and solidarity values ​​and the need for sociality.

How does your idea strengthen active citizenship at a local and community level?

The project promotes initiatives to raise awareness of the sustainability of places and local products, and social inclusion. We will transform a ghettoised place into an open area, capable of welcoming and stimulating new economies and integration systems. Citizenship participation will be the driving force behind the intervention and the fulcrum of the initiative. A short supply chain will be created with the sale of agricultural products and local handicrafts to create a diversified community of consumers and small producers, also involving disabled people to strengthen their soft skills, recognising their social as citizens and workers. The city will acquire a new place of inclusion, developing the neighbourhood and the wider area, by providing innovative services and realities.

Why is this idea important to you?

The spirit of the project is to promote involvement, participation and inclusion in a particular urban area of the city, which by its conformation is characterised by urban decay, ghettoized immigration and lack of safety. We aim to make this currently underused but strategic area alive and useful to citizens again; it is adjacent to the city centre, train and bus station. In this part of the city, it is necessary to create new places, dedicated to the elaboration of ideas, and which can integrate different identities. We believe in solidarity and centrality of the person, as abstract values to which the actual implementation of our project can be anchored. Food and the dialogues around it are a community theme that can be transformed into a social development strategy.

€ 50000,-

Total budget

€ 50000,-

Funding requested from Civic Europe

Major expenses

Personnel costs: 18.000
Terrace maintenance, licenses, authorisations, health, safety and insurance costs: 5.000
Equipment rental costs (furniture, raw materials, etc. for markets and dinners): 4.000
Bicycles purchase for delivery: 6.000
On-line platforms: 5.500
Social sponsorship and advertising: 3.000
Packaging: 2.000
Producers travel and accommodation: 2.000
Travel expenses to meet producers and collect goods: 3.500
Office expenses: 1.000

What do you need from the Civic Europe community?

We would certainly like to receive advice on how we could achieve the project objectives more effectively. The idea of sharing different visions is the basis of our work and we would welcome the expertise gained from previous similar experiences to enhance our idea.





Annalisa Ardinghi

Idea created on May 26, 2020
Last edit on May 27, 2020

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