An encounter with Refugees

Marichia

went to meet the refugees who met daily at Rome’s Termini Station with the hope of giving them a little dignity and getting them out of their isolation. Thanks to her determination and her humanity, she convinced a dozen refugees to embark on the collection and processing of plastic and paper waste in Rome.

 

In August 2011, a “migrant art” was born through Refugee Scart, a non-profit humanitarian organisation, entirely run by refugees with the support of Spiral Foundation. Refugee Scart has received patronage from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. About twenty refugees work today in this structure.

 

 

Marichias’ goals:

  • To allow isolated, uprooted refugees far from their loved ones to regain a sense of community and self-esteem that will enable them to begin an integration process and start a new life. Behind every refugee there is a touching human story.
  • Contribute to reduce plastic and paper waste in Rome and recycle it into original creations. Refugee Scart has recycled 15 tons of plastic (250 kg / month) since its creation. It thus makes a significant contribution to the preservation of the environment of the Historic Center of Rome. One way for refugees to contribute to the Italian society that welcomed them.
  • Allow refugees to support themselves (housing, food …). Refugee Scart sales are fully redistributed among refugees, providing them with an income ranging from 600 to 1000 euros / month. On their own initiative, refugees contribute to a solidarity fund to help other refugees in dire need.

 

The transformation of waste into bags:

It is in their workshop provided by AMA Roma Spa, the waste collection agency, that the refugee artists unfold their creativity. The plastic bags are collected daily by the refugees in the bins of Rome and from companies, shops, …

Marichia has implemented a unique process: the bags are cut into thin strips and deposited on a layer of plastic. The passage of the iron allows to adhere the strips on the plastic. A pressing roll, given by a hotel, then consolidates everything to obtain a raw material from which are manufactured handbags, shopping bags, placemats, pencil pots, pouches, kits, street lamps …

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