Quibdó-Paris artistic and cultural-exchange
The children and young people at our project with Círculo de Estudios are going to Paris for an intercultural exchange
This October, 10 children and young people (aged 11-17) who attend our project with Círculo de Estudios in Quibdó will travel to Paris in an intercultural exchange programme. They are travelling there to do a joint-performance ‘El Bunde del Agua’ or ‘The Bunde of Water’, a work of art comprising of music, dance and theatre, showcasing their culture and talents. The idea of the trip is to break down barriers of prejudice, discrimination and racism, and to achieve respect for diversity. For this reason, Círculo de Estudios has been predominantly working in the Afro-Colombian region of Quibdó.
The performance, ‘El Bunde del Agua’, will aim to facilitate understanding, empathy and inter-cultural communication between the groups of adolescents from Quibdó and Nanterre (Paris). It will draw upon their common experience of having water characterise their everyday lives, as both Quibdó and Nanterre are situated by a river. The water will thus act as a symbol of their daily lives, their dreams, thoughts and emotions, as well as the joys and terrors of their environment. The adolescents, as the protagonists, will portray not victims, but human beings with talents and skills who are seeking alternative paths to violence, ones which promote healthy and peaceful co-existence.
The exchange will be a life-changing opportunity for these young Colombians, who are primarily from vulnerable and under-resourced communities. They will have undergone 4 years of psychosocial support, and dance, art and theatre workshops helping them to learn about their human rights, cultural heritage and how to protect their communities, so this trip will be the culmination and reward at the end of a long journey. This experience of meeting new people and cultures will hopefully serve to open their minds, increase empathy and acceptance of diversity. Similarly, reflecting upon and discussing both their socio-political similarities and differences will help them break down barriers of discrimination. All these skills learnt will contribute to the building of a more tolerant, inclusive and interconnected society.