Local associations and parishes in the Bocage region are regularly confronted with emergency situations involving serious material need and sometimes great emotional distress. We urgently need to find new solutions to help the homeless, some of whom are migrants.
Our key initiative is in finding 100 donors who agree to donate a minimum of five euros per month, allowing a homeless family or person to rent a decent home while on their path to becoming fully independent.
These people and families are invited to join the association:
- They are invited to volunteer as part of solidarity activities with member associations and partners.
- They make the same donation as other members, giving them a method that is within their means of supporting other migrants.
A local support group is in place to help those being housed:
- in terms of adapting (work, health, social rights, school, sponsorship, etc.);
- in connection with partner associations and organisations that are involved.
This might seem like a symbolic initiative, but it generates a large amount of awareness around the issue and encourages and alternative view of the issue of migrant integration.
Some paid employees, alongside several activists and citizens involved at the grassroots level.
This initiative is carried out by a collective of grassroots associations: GRANIT, Atelier Mauléonnais, CCFD-Terre solidaire, La citoyenne, Paroisse Saint-Jean Paul II in Bocage, Emmaus France, socio-cultural centres in Mauléon, Bressuire and Nueil-lesAubiers, Voir plus l’Ouin, CMR, ARDIBB, Secours Catholique (Caritas).
Ateliers du Bocage, an Emmaus member, actively supports the initiative.
Emmaus set up the Association for the Recognition of Immigrant rights in Bocage Bressuirais (ARDIBB) in conjunction with other local associations (Secours Catholique, CCFD Terre solidare, etc.) in an effort to raise awareness among locals on the topic of migrants.
On 11 May 2016, the Atelier Mauléonnais association organised a conference on migration, with the participation of a researcher from the University of Poitiers. Around 240 people attended. Following this, several associations and parishes have wanted to take concrete action.
Emmaus then suggested setting up the 100 for 1 project that had already been tried out in other areas.
We hope to continue getting those living in different areas involved, so that they can be aware of the concrete ways in which they can help those in difficulty (e.g. doing up accommodation before new residents arrive, finding everyday items, helping new arrivals to find their feed and establish themselves). We would like to assemble more energy and resources to continue providing a dignified welcome to those in need in our region.
This is a new initiative in the area (only a few months old), but we already support two families in Argentonnais and Bressuire with the support of around 100 donors. This local-citizen involvement allows us to deal with emergency situations.
We provide additional link between associations and parishes that bring together many locals. This allows people who are not necessarily long-standing activists to become involved, thereby broadening the range of people who are involved in the movement.
We have a serious need for publicity to spread news of our initiative and to increase the number of donors. We need to hand out flyers, create a website, find community managers to ensure we have a presence on social media, strengthen word-of-mouth publicity, etc.
We do not ask people to give a lot, rather lots of people to give a little.