#FromTheField: Dario, Gianluca e Viola – from classmates to co-founders of their own young association, Status Equo
Dario, Gianluca e Viola met during Master PMC – Project Management for International Cooperation and started working together as fellows, for a project work assigned to them during the Master. This trio is an example of proactivity and exceptional team working, and for this reason we want to share with you their Story from the Field, that takes shape in the organization they have founded, Status Equo.
“All associations are born from people.
When we started our Master PMC at Social Change School, the last thing we were expecting was to one day create our own organization. And yet, after meeting each other and (casually?) being grouped together for the project work, after laughing (a lot!) and working hard, we asked ourselves: “and now?”. First and foremost, the Master gave us the chance to meet each other (and this is already a great merit!) and then it helped us understand how well we work together. In addition to this, particularly thanks to lecturers like Andrea Stroppiana and Alessio Di Carlo, it gave us important theoretical and practical bases on how to write and manage projects in difficult contexts, which is what we intend on doing with Status Equo. At the end of the Master, we didn’t want our experience together to end, we wanted to keep working well together, following the ideas and values we understood we were sharing from the very beginning, each with their method and experience behind them, to share something of our own making, something we could create and model based on our own minds. And this is how Status Equo was born.
It wasn’t easy, as this sector has many complexities and, mostly, many interpretations: we decided to constitute an Association in the middle of the Third Sector’s reform – which is still missing many decrees to implement it, in a transitional period from the old legislation to the new one. Related to this particular moment, we have encountered some difficulties understanding the best associational form for us. After asking for legal advice to a Centre of Voluntary Services of Milan, we were able to give life to our very own Associazione di Promozione Sociale. When writing the Certificate of Incorporation and the Articles, we also received the help of the Direction of the Third Sector of the Region Emilia Romagna, considering that both documents needed to follow both the current and new regulations.
Status Equo’s vision is that of contributing to the realization of a world that will recognize value in all diversities, that will be the foundation of the unity, solidarity and harmony of all peoples. To do this, we are setting some more specific objectives: contributing to the human, social, cultural, technical and economic development of the most disadvantaged people, following the principles of co-responsibility, interdependence and non-violence, trying to remove the economic, political and social obstacles that constrain individuals all over the world and promoting, both locally and internationally, a type of equitable and sustainable development, compatible with the environmental resources and limits of the planet.
Once the Association was born, we immediately started working, because words are beautiful, but facts are even better. Each of us started looking around, starting from their own acquaintances, and we found out there was a guy from Ghana, Erik, staying in a Local Shelter in Bitonto while waiting for international protection, who, in spite of being a great tailor, couldn’t afford to buy the instruments he needed to make what so far had only been a great passion become his actual job. For this reason, we wrote a small crowdfunding project, “Il Filo di Erik”, which has a very simple goal: helping Erik buy a professional sewing machine and a serger to increase and improve his products. The right way to start is to have the humility to begin with something small, being ready to make adjustments if things are not working and being patient, because results will slowly come (to learn more about the project and to order one of the beautiful shirts made by Erik, visit IlFilodiErik). We know we need to optimize our time and carefully evaluate pros and cons of each initiative of the Association before carrying it out.
In the meantime, we have also learnt the importance of collaborating with other associations and creating a network of contacts that will allow us to make the name of Status Equo more known. This is the reason why we decided to participate, ending up being the actual organizers and promoters, in the event “Discrimination, identity and citizenship” which took place in Castel Maggiore (Bologna, Italy) the 13th of January of this year, together with the associations Sonrisas Andinas, Next Generation Italy, #ItalianiSenzaCittadinanza and with the patronage of the Municipality of Castel Maggiore. A very successful event, with a participated debate and an excellent Italian-Peruvian dinner, that allowed us to raise funds for another project we will realize soon and for which we are looking for more fundings: the creation of a video against discriminations in Italy.
That’s who we are, and this is Status Equo. We still have a long road before us, but we are really looking forward to it”.
Dario, Gianluca and Viola