11 Little Things We Learned

Tandem Europe participants Sara Filippelli and Bistra Ivanova wrote a list, completely using "the honesty from the stomach" as they describe it themselves. We love this very personal perspective on their Tandem journey, full of beautiful emotions.

1. CasciNet and Multi Kulti Collective fell in love at first sight during the Partners Forum in Sofia because they both share the values of co-creation, participation, sustainability, and are passionate about the use of culture and food as tools for social cohesion.

2. We understood that, looking at our skills, we really wanted to create a new model, a cross-sector movement, that uses collaboration and innovation between different sectors to bring a culture of mutual understanding and respect. And we found it beautiful.

3. We quickly realized that the aim of our project was to create a multi-cultural garden where all the diversity can coexist in a place of participation: culture was used to activate a socio-cultural transformation and a participatory process, empowering migrant communities as co-creators of a sustainable social innovation movement.

4. Definitely, Bistra fell in love with Italy, and Sara with Bulgaria.

5. As an Italian stereotype, Sara remembered again how enriching it is to sit down around a table and share stories from different countries, especially if you do it with an association who works with food and migrants.

6. Looking at the pictures of our whole year together we said: WOW, did we really do this? We built a festival on new roots? Made so many trips? Explored different countries? Danced inside and outside our bodies, but always inside our souls? Hiked the Bulgarian mountains, just to see the falling stars? Ate plenty of ice cream? Laughed up to cry? Met and hug so many, beautiful people?

7. That’s why building a project, a story, is impossible without the others: a single point of view becomes a monologue, but the collection of choral voices becomes a wonderful dialogue.

8. And also, creating a “sight-specific” art project together – a habitat which uses natural and local elements in order to build a concept of global multiculturalism – is like cultivating a utopian thought that explores the impossible but reveals the possible: the meeting of diversity.

9. Community, arts, education, public space, performance, art, music, migration, rural development, social cohesion, are all hashtags of our future.

10. We really want to say “Thank you, Tandem Europe” because our amazing Tandem was so important in the deep understanding that having no borders, in Europe, makes us really privileged for the great opportunity to listen and to share.

11. Last but not least, at the end of the journey we felt like a big family: the more we were together, the more we were learning!