The principle objective of Project Elea is the development of a resilient and inclusive community. The guiding philosophy that underpins our work is that through creative engagement and empowerment we can enable the residents to a build a community in which they can feel safe, secure and dignified. We therefore seek active feedback from residents on our service provision and encourage their active participation in, and leadership of, the activities on offer. In the long term, the goal is for the community to become as self-sustainable and autonomous as possible.
Our team of volunteers responds to the basic needs of the residents, for example through food and clothes distribution, and provides the spaces and activities necessary for creative engagement and development. We offer an eight hour schedule of activities each day, with regular sessions including story-telling and educational games, football, volleyball and basketball training, , yoga, aerobics, sewing, knitting, henna painting, arts and crafts, dance, gardening, carpentry, and skills-sharing workshops. Each week we have the hugely popular Elea Cup, a football tournament for children, and every few weeks we have a talent show where the residents share their cultures through dance, music and performance.
The schedule draws on the creative skills of the volunteers and has been sensitively designed in collaboration with the residents to respond to their specific needs and interests. By encouraging residents to take responsibility for running activities themselves we are increasingly meeting the project’s objective of empowering the community.