The Terra Franca garden is given to HRYO from the Municipality of Palermo for a time share of 10 years to develop it and to give it back to the community. The garden is confiscated from the Mafia and it was abandoned more than 15 years ago and it is in very bad condition. It is located in the Cruillas district, at via Trabucco, close to the Cervello hospital. So, this is a long term project for our organization and hopefully we will be able to succeed in all our goals.
My name is Bojan Stojanovic and I am currently volunteering in HRYO. This will be a blog for the Terra Franca garden and I am going to keep you updated with our work every month. I am a part of a group of volunteers that are here for an EVS, almost 1 year long in which we decided to take part of this huge project from our organization. Cleaning and trying to make Terra Franca a functional garden with a goal of restoring the goods that can be useful afterwards for the community. We are 6 volunteers currently coming from Macedonia, Turkey, Norway and Belarus and we are working every Friday for 2 months so far, also, with our representatives from our organization Marco, Melania, Valeria and Senem. The presence of volunteers, their initiatives and activities, are going to play that fundamental role of animation of the place. The presence of foreign volunteers has a strong impact within the social context in which we will operate.
Currently we are still in a cleaning phase. Cutting all the unnecessary grass, plants and branches, but also removing all the garbage that we can find. We are also in a process of making a compost in which we use all the “organic” garbage. From cactuses to small cutted branches, we are trying to make useful everything we can find. The other garbage we find, plastic, metal, etc., we are selecting it and then we put them in bags that afterwards are going to recycle.
For only 2 months work we can see a huge difference from before. From total garden full of garbage and different types of plants, now we can say that we are on a very good way and with a couple months of work we can be in a position where we can start to plant and start the second phase of our long term goal and that is cultivation.
With our actions at Terra Franca, except from cleaning and cultivating the garden, more importantly we are creating an educational and social path and a new way of fighting against the mafia phenomenon. Giving an ex-mafia property in useful condition to the people of Palermo is a huge win for us, and a huge loss for them.
With all the work we have put in the garden, there is still a lot to do. So any help will be enormously welcomed. With your help here you are doing two very big things for the people of Palermo: cleaning a garden that tommorrow can be used, but more importantly FIGHTING AGAINST MAFIA!
Follow us on our social media platforms for more interesting content for the work we do at this garden, I will keep you updated.