SPRAR

The Protection System for Asylum Seekers and Refugees created in 2001, allows municipalities which are alailable to welcome migrants on their territory, to take advantage of a fund to put into practice initiatives in favor of reception and integration. Today Caserta hosts the largest SPRAR in Campania with 151 male and 8 female beneficiaries. The Centro Sociale Ex Canapificio together with Casa Rut manages the project making use of the collaboration of an associative network that includes religious bodies, universities and volunteers. In this way, migrants are allowed to have decent housing and to be involved in social inclusion and professional training courses, with an employment rate equal to 13%, double that of Italy. The Sprar of Caserta is a virtuous example in Italy, the so-called Bilateral Inclusion is being tested here: refugees and asylum seekers are involved in projects together with the natives aimed at improving everyone's living conditions as well as improving the livability of the territory. Migrants, therefore, not only can study and are introduced into the world of work, they also participate in the activities of the several associations for the recovery of green spaces, the creation of a foot-bus for the accompaniment of children at school as well as music and art courses for children. The presence of migrants in the area is therefore not managed as a problem, but seen as a resource, a vision that was not shared by the first Conte government. In recent months the sprar beneficiaries have allowed me to photograph them to tell their story. It is the story of youngsters who put their lives at stake to cross the sea, who rolled up their sleeves to learn our language, our way of life,  to learn a job and who are appreciated from the locals to the point that they entrust them their children. In October 2018, the new security decree wanted by the former minister Salvini, greatly changed the reception rules in Italy. It is expected that 40% of the beneficiaries of the Caserta Sprar will lose the possibility of maintaining and / or obtaining a residence permit. The number of migrants who have been refused humanitarian protection has increased dramatically and this will imply that these people will end without legal status, easily becoming prey to criminal organizations and labor exploiters. The feeling is that not only the law has changed, but also the climate has changed in Italy, that is episodes of racism are now on the agenda. The impression is that a very specific part of the political representation is riding and fueling the fear of the  unknown expressed by an increasingly part of Italians. Today the unknown is the foreigner, poor, who comes from the sea.

I look into the eyes of these guys and today I see the fear of losing everything, not only the residence permit, but a life, a job, friends and hope.

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