There is a degraded land in need of regeneration and a social fabric in need of cohesion. We want to build a community around the collective care of the land, lifting fragile people from their condition of marginality through direct involvement in a participatory regeneration action, using ecosystem-based agricultural and educational practices, including theatre facilitating activities for community development. Land care becomes people care, the well-being of both conceived as a common good.
In the rural outskirts in the south of Milan, North of Italy.
The project area belongs to the rural outskirts of the city of Milan, in the Corvetto and Vigentino neighborhoods. With many families living in economic fragility, the Corvetto district suffers the highest school dropout rate in the city. The area has seen a significant influx of migrants during the past decades that wasn’t met with adequate integration policies, resulting in daily cases of discrimination.
The social isolation is coupled with the loss of ecological heritage and agricultural identity, caused by a progressive abandonment of the once productive fields of the area.
We see the common nature of agricultural land as a powerful medium for a collective process of Re-generation, aiming at transforming the civic desert through the revitalisation of the agricultural desert.
We conceive agroecology as a soft and powerful medium to gather people around a collective responsibility and common engagement. We involve the isolated inhabitants through agroecological practices and ecosystem-based education, arising social and ecological awareness and merging them with the already large number of volunteers who attend the activities.
Building of a community: different isolated subjects will be carefully included through facilitated meetings, co-creating a community. Through the practicing of Forum Theater, a mixed group of citizens and actors grows in a choral empowerment.
Sharing of a collective responsibility: participants will be guided into the co-ideation of regenerative agroecology activities, through moments of training, implementation and shared management.
Our project aims to directly involve people coming from diversified backgrounds: families with economic and social fragility, individuals in probation for social services, residents from public social housing, women of different ethnic groups, students from local schools, with normal and different abilities, and citizens already involved in volunteering.
People are empowered and involved through inclusive and proactive processes of community building. Forum Theatre Methodology is a generative facilitating tool: it promotes awareness around the theme of personal and collective role in civic participation. People “go on stage” and are given a space to propose creative solutions. This will enable a co-ideation process for land regeneration practices over time.
Inclusion and facilitation:
Call to the arts- guided meetings involving the group and the volunteers, through the proactive method of Forum Theatre
Facilitated ConversActions- sharing and listening moments aimed at strengthening group relationships
Co-planning of a final community event to present project’s results
Theoretical and practical meetings aimed at developing basic skills and providing the group with the necessary tools to complete the activities
Planting of an urban forestry architecture
Take care of a flower, take care of the planet- small floreal production to be shared in the final event
Creation of Strips for Biodiversity, through the sowing of mixtures of varieties and the monitoring of their evolution
Community building achievements will be represented by the new birth of a gathering familiar place for people, where there is room for everybody’s free emergence and expression of inner societal needs. A mixed group of actors will be born, where neglected and fragile people will have proactively experienced the potential of their personal role within the social ecosystem they live in, through their becoming the Actors of a shared action of care for a common good, gradually building their personal and ecological awareness.
At its completion, the project will have brought to the area new ecological and urban forestry artworks: a long-term forested area for soil regeneration, a Flower Garden, flowering meadows strips for biodiversity, the shared construction of a common convivial zone.
In 2015 all European nations agreed on SDG’s achievement as the key strategy for changing the world’s current trends of degradation and inequality. Our project aims at integrating isolated people in ecologic regeneration and community building activities, already attended by a large number of volunteers, gathered around the theme of food security and sovereignty, thus regenerating the resilience of an urban community. Last year we planted more than 2000 trees through collective actions of urban agroecology. The inclusive model we are working on is a vivid reaction to the limited accessibility to democratic processes. Our project’s activities embrace several SDG’s, effectively contributing to their achievement and to the advocacy and strengthening of an empowering proximity democracy.
We believe that the human and ecological equilibrium of our society relies upon a collective and all-inclusive awareness. As in ecology each individual occupies its own niche, which means it has an interconnected role with the whole ecosystem, so it is in society: everyone has a role within our human ecosystem. Everyone has the right to feel and experience their belonging to this system: which are their needs, resources, which can be their role and value, and hence their action. We want to facilitate these involvement processes. During past years, we directly tested how powerful the aggregation of multiple realities and people towards the common purpose of environmental regeneration can be. Integrating neglected people in our activities would boost the biodiverse potential of our actions.
Funding requested from Civic Europe
The project main costs category will be:
Agroecology activities 27000 euro
Material, personnel costs, communication, other
Community building activities 17000 euro
Personnel costs, material, communication, other
Project Coordination 6000 euro
Having an exchange with projects similar to ours
Possible collaboration in futurable international projects