For the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, ABD highlights the power of the community as a barn to fight against inequalities. The “Comunitat Activa” programme, in L’Hospitalet de Llobregat and Barcelona, involves the neighbors with difficulties in their process of improvement, participating in their community.
In the Barcelona area, unemployment, the rise in rental prices and the lack of life perspectives affect thousands of families. “It’s alarming,” explains Elena Sala, head of the Comunitat Activa programme, “we see how life prices and labor precariousness increase, while resources to give attention to people are lacking”. Work has traditionally been the main route of access to economic resources and, as a result, to most of fundamental rights, but it is not the only one. This is confirmed by Sala: “It is also not having finished compulsory education, not having enough knowledge of new technologies or language, or not having any kind of family network and relational support.”
ABD has been working for years in l’Hospitalet and now also in the Sants district of Barcelona to train and empower people in situations of unemployment or precariousness from the community itself. “It’s about what to build, how to gain confidence and tools to move forward but also connect with their neighbors and return in some way what they receive in the community,” she explains. In fact, people who get a job through community participation programmes are the vast majority: “the average insertion of the program is 42%; if they do complementary activities and training is 45%; if they also receive social support, the average is 58% and if they also make community participation, it is 66% “stresses the person in charge of Comunitat Activa, which also adds that “the role of companies is fundamental: training opportunities and job reintegration are key to the recovery of people’s trust “.
Participation in “Comunitat Activa” is materialised in a space where the person can maintain, retrieve or acquire competencies for the labor market. In addition, it improves the self-esteem, the disposition and the positioning of the participants and appeals the feeling of belonging to the neighborhood. “It is the responsibility of all of us who manage to live in a fair society and in equal opportunities, the strength of the community is crucial to achieve this” concludes Sala.