When you wake up in the morning and the first thing you see is a beautiful view of the garden at Can Masdeu, you can be sure that it is going to be a good day. For us it was also full of new experiences.
Yesterday we discussed the problems in our countries in the context of the right to housing and food. Today all the groups were exchanging their knowledge and opinions, it occurred that some countries have solutions for the problems of others. All the groups agreed that lack of knowledge of the issue is a very common problem but also difficult access to the law to fight violation, dependency on mortgage and high rent were amongst the most common struggles in many countries. As for the food, wasting society, lack of education on food severeignty and small access to healthy food, were categorised as the most important issues.
If we want to make a change and start our own actions, we need to know how other activists try to help people in need. That is why we had a meeting with Irene from Observatori DESC. It is a Human Rights organization that mixes the NGO approach and the social movements approach. Among many other activities, Observatori DESC works on advocacy, they also monitor social rights violations, participate in social movement and campaigns, conduct trainings on Human Rights, try to change the law and support social movements.
In the afternoon we wanted to focus on the right to food. At Can Masdeu, the community takes care of the garden that provides vegetables and fruit to the house. Arnau, as a member of this community and also an experienced activist, told us about food sovereignty and explained how important it is to shorten the food production chain and to raise awareness about that issue. New knowledge was also an inspiration for some of the participants, Yana Nyzhegorodova: “I started to think about new project related to recycling in Ukraine. I think that situation there is much worse than in the other countries. Now I know where I can find support. ”
Sometimes physical work can be the best way to relax and also to contribute. At the end of the day we were helping with the garden – after that activity many of us began to think about having our own garden.
“Learning about the housing problems in Barcelona from the actual ‘actors’ and trying to come up with solutions to problems that, more or less, all of our countries are dealing with was challenging but satisfying. Walking around the facilities in Can Masdeu and helping with the ecological techniques of cultivating fruit and vegetables was also unforgettable!” Elpida Karmali