One of the most active groups of "La Casona", a care center in the southern part of Buenos Aires, is the “Centro de Producción Audiovisual”, which is formed by eight young people of ages 16-22 who found in the cinema and audiovisual production a tool to express their feelings about the challenging reality around them. Last August, they received a visit by a group led by Frederique Seidel, World Council of Churches (WCC) special adviser on Child Rights.
The Centro de Producción Audiovisual, currently formed by six boys and two girls, already released some professional productions and is engaged in teaching the art of cinema to the younger ones around them.
They are adolescents and young adults who since childhood found in La Casona a big family in their search to adapt and integrate themselves in a reality marked by poverty and lack of opportunities for the less fortunate ones.
"The inspiration for our short films comes mostly from what is happening to each of us, or what happens to the kids outside and the social problems we see in our neighborhood", said Sebastian Cardozo, one of the members of the group.
“Many arrive here with problems, but here they are given the love and attention they need. This is a place and an opportunity to experience the different processes phases of our growth (childhood, teenager, youth) in a constructive way”, added Gabriel Ocampo, who is also part of the group.
La Casona is an initiative of the Evangelical Church of the River Plate (IERP), a WCC member church, which for more than 30 years has been working in Villa Vatteone, one of the poorest neighborhoods in the southern part of the Argentinean capital, providing care and support to some 120 children and adolescents, many of them from social spaces with problems of violence, drugs and high unemployment.
In addition to care and conviviality, La Casona also offers free of charge workshops on carpentry, hairdressing, bakery, music, theater, recycling, and many other options.
The support of this work is carried out with the help of the IERP itself, as well as contributions from institutions such as Bread for the World and some help from the Argentine state.