Can Sant Joan … or how to transform a neighborhood based on culture and neighborhood network

  • The neighborhood cornered by too many train tracks that cross Montcada shows some worrisome vulnerability statistics that the neighborhood is determined to fight

  • Community experiences like ‘El Rec es mou!’ or ‘Culture and neighborhood ‘ they intend that the relationships of fraternity and trust that exist in the school -pillar of the enclave- are also reproduced in the streets

Leaving the El Viver School Institute, school for which so many clubs received and pride of Can Sant Joan, Antonio de Pedro, historical of the neighborhood association, jokes: “When hold the train and remove the cement Veterans can already die. “Bury the countless roads that open the enclave in the canal and dismantle the huge incinerator that dominates the harsh skyline of this corner of Montcada have been the two great battles of the classic neighborhood movement. As it was, it will be 40 years now, to achieve the public school from which he now speaks.

“This was a Barcelona City Council nursery [de ahí su nombre]. Neighbors occupied it twice to build a school in conditions for our children; they were hard occupations, with charges of the Civil Guard “, recalls Of Pedro. Equipment now under construction [están levantando el edificio del instituto tras convertirse, hace tres cursos, en instituto escuela] what is it, in the words of Alícia Neck, Head of Infant and Primary Studies, a small “wellness island“for the creatures. maximum complexity due to the different social and cultural realities of families in which boys and girls share spaces and learning among equals, mix and wealth that the neighbors want to reproduce also in the street with initiatives such as The Rec is moving! O Culture and neighborhood.

Both actions born within the framework of the Can Sant Joan Community Table, of which they form part from the Institut Escola to the library, the neighborhood Association, the Amazigh House or neighbors involved on an individual basis, such as Noelia Narejo, also known as ‘Guardian of the Sierra de la Marina’, who on November 5 came down from the mountain to share stories with the little ones in the neighborhood meeting at reborn Rec Comtal, also the result of a most recent neighborhood fight.

The statistics that the organized neighborhood wants to reverse based on culture and neighborhood network are harsh. According to figures from Institute of Regional and Metropolitan Studies, 36% of its population has primary or lower education – the median of the metropolitan area is 24% – or the population with low incomes is 27.7%, while the median of the metropolitan area is the 13,4%.

Dori Cobo She is a neighbor, mother and grandmother of the neighborhood (and of the school). He is also a workshop at Culture and Neighborhoods, where she teaches crafts – her passion – to children. The spitting image of the slogan of the Culture and neighborhood: “a neighborhood made by all.” “They are always simple and cheap things,” she explains while proudly displaying one of her creations, a Christmas tree made with logs, on her mobile phone. At her side, her husband, also very involved in the Table, shows photos of her granddaughters watering the community garden of aromatic plants that they planted in ‘the laundries’, municipal equipment of which they make use when they can, which is not always. “In the neighborhood there are facilities, but they are not as open as they should be. We have, for example, the Kursaal, which was also the result of a neighborhood struggle, and is totally underused “, criticizes Of Pedro.

Narejo agrees in the diagnosis and adds: “School is a great engine, but more resources are needed in the afternoons. The library is full of children doing homework and work, who find a suitable space there, warmth and support, but study rooms would be necessary, for example. More resources “.

We always say that school is an island of well-being for boys and girls

Alicia Cuello, secretary of the Institut Escola El Viver

“A very nice example of what we were looking for was the poetry festival in the Plaza del Bosc, in which poems were read in many languages, each in its own mother tongue, and then those same poems were read in Catalan. It was a precious joint work of the school and the neighbors, “says the neighborhood and cultural activist Antonio Alcantara, who is clear that grassroots community initiatives have to be aimed at weave complicities, how it was seen and lived in the aforementioned neighborhood meeting on the 5th in what is now Rec, where each one contributed their grain of sand. While Narejo He explained stories, from the Amazigh House, That brings together an important part of the Moroccan community, they prepare you.

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Actions, in addition, with a great anti-racist potential in which people from the gypsy community and payas celebrate the neighborhood together, where the same is played chess, one of the stakes of the Table, recovering a tradition deeply rooted in the place years ago, as taught circus, one of the passions of Alcántara, also father of the school.

Lidia Fluvia, a lifelong neighbor and grandmother of the school, of course, downplays her role, but is an important piece in the gear of the Community Table, whose main virtual is that transversality. What of “a neighborhood made by all“They are not just words.” I take a lot of photos, yes, and I hung the posters of Culture and neighborhood“, says the woman, very critical of the dirt on the sidewalks of Bifurcate, as many call the enclave for the well-known train station.

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