Cultural Clubs can be attended by all age groups, that is, by the community at large. They exhibit the different art works made in our workshops throughout a month. This is a space for intergenerational exchange where all families socialize. Besides, it is a space to exchange with groups and persons from other places in Cuba and the world, who are always willing to participate in our general club held every first Sunday monthly at 9:00 am across the headquarter of our institution.
• These activities will be held in several venues of Centro Habana municipality and, occasionally in other municipalities. The dynamics will be determined by the managing group in keeping with the needs. People interested in attending these activities please confirm the date at the Project headquarters located in Maloja # 22 entre Águila y Ángeles, from 9 am to 12 pm.
• A very dynamic program has been established for training processes upon request by institutions or specific age groups (on issues such as gender, transgender, skin color, domestic violence, bullying, work with LGBT-HI, and interfaith dialogue, among others). Please contact the Project headquarters located in Maloja # 22 entre Águila y Ángeles, from 9 am to 12 pm.
The Quisicuaba Town Hall religious and cultural Association inaugurates the “Love Seasons” photograph exhibit.
Source: CubaMInrex. http://www.cubaminrex.cu/es/asociacion-religiosa-y-cultural-cabildo-quisicuaba-inaugura-exposicion-fotografica-estaciones-de
Cuba, February 14, 2014. The “Quisicuaba Town Hall” Asociación Espiritista Kardeciana Cruzada in coordination with the National Center for STI-HIV/AIDS Prevention inaugurated the “Love Seasons” photograph exhibit at the Centro Habana House of Artists and Creators.
This cultural activity was attended by representatives from the PCC (Communist Party of Cuba), the municipal government of that locality, the national press, and members of the Association. Specialist Carmen Maury Toledo, representing the UNESCO Cuban National Commission was also present.
The welcoming speeches were delivered by Dr. Rosaida Ochoa, Director of the National Center for STI-HIV/AIDS Prevention and Dr. Enrique Alemán, President of the Quisicuaba Town Hall Association, who was also the curator of the exhibit.
As pointed out by the speakers, this initiative is in line with a thematic line in which both institutions are working together, namely, health prevention, especially the incidence of STI-HIV/AIDS in the Centro Habana Municipality. (For more information please visit:
A Town Hall in Los Sitios
By: Eileen Sosin
Source: La Jiribilla. http://www.lajiribilla.cu/articulo/7245/un-cabildo-en-los-sitios
A passer-by asked for something to eat. “Wait a minute; they will bring you breakfast right away”. It was just after dawn. The house usually provides lunch but, this time, there was an exception: next time you should bring a bowl and your identification card. Many persons –sick, elderly, social cases- come at noon to taste Isabel´s seasoning. Yet, soul´s nourishment is the “main course” served by the Quisicuaba Town Hall (Cabildo Quisicuaba).
“Inside the house, we are a religious association, outside the house we are community workers”, explained the President of this social and cultural initiative, Enrique Alemán, known to everybody as the “Doctor”, not only because he is a doctor by profession, but also as a token of respect.
“To what extent does the religious aspect have a bearing on your social work? On the promulgation of human values, for it is the expression of the generosity and altruism of the religious Cubans of today; but the paths of faith are others. Otherwise, our project would have been an excluding project”.
The house, located in Maloja No. 22, in Los Sitios neighborhood, welcomes children and grandparents, men and women, people of all skin colors. Exhibitions, workshops and dance, literature, theater, music and plastic arts clubs become a “pretext” to have a bearing on the life projects of both individuals and families. Their influence is mainly exerted there, where it really hurts, where it is badly needed: to contribute to the reinsertion of former prisoners, to modify delinquency-prone attitudes, to counsel alcoholics, HIV patients, and single mothers.
Such a civic-minded endeavor must avoid paternalism, compassion and messianic intentions. “The project is made up by the people, the human being to be transformed must be the transformer of his/her own work. We do not provide solutions. We get involved in the problems we face in order, first of all, to study them and, then, to trigger tangible actions”.
In accordance with the texts on which the Town Hall is grounded, the goal is to create a space for socialization and to spur collective creativity and intelligence, always bearing in mind the specificities of the territory. Its objectives intend to promote values and spirituality, health and self-responsibility.
Therefore, participation becomes a premise and finality at the same time. “I am a neighbor, we are the community. Thus, this is not an intervention project. No one has come to instill in us the idea of a working plan. The community, committed with its environment and its historical moment, gathered and realized that a change was needed”.
If we talk about empowerment, traditions, history and local culture, popular education is the tool par excellence, since it “provides us with a premise and a methodological resource for a prompt action.” The gender perspective, in turn, permeates most of the work, particularly in the intra-generational and domestic fields. Here we include actions to prevent and reduce family violence and “transactional sex”, as well as conflict mediation with LGTB groups.
Its motto is respect for cultural diversity, broadly understood as “skin color, oral expressions, the way we act, the food we eat, the way we dance, walk and behave, …” Each first Sunday of the month, our streets boom with such heterogeneous expressions, as part of the activities we regularly hold, in a great gathering, where songs and dances are always present.
All this is accompanied by academic and research actions at the Andrea B. Zabala Seminary (Dr. Aleman’s grandmother and founder of the religious institution in 1939), where courses, seminars, diploma papers and lectures are held.
Strategic alliances with numerous institutions like the “Fernando Ortiz” Foundation, the Psychological and Sociological Research Center (CIPS its acronym in Spanish), the House of Africa, the Juan Marinello Institute, the Havana University, and he Cuban Institute of Anthropology, among others, come into play. The President of Quisicuaba confirms that a cross-cutting and interdisciplinary approach is also an important goal.
Likewise, links with the Culinary Association and the Association of Cuban Artists and Artisans (ACAA its acronym in Spanish) has created job opportunities for several participants in the project, providing them also with training and upgrading.
Working together with municipal authorities has also redounded in resurfacing of streets, renovation of facades, and educational murals. “We try to teach decision-makers what we have learnt so that they can replicate it, while learning also from them.”
Among the 70-member managing group, there is a sociologist whose task “may seem obvious, but is not”. Andres Hernández says that sometimes the programs are not properly focused, thus “the most important role of the sociologist is to guide and design community diagnostics and device a plan of action accordingly.”
Then, an analysis of the impact on the different populations throughout its implementation must follow. Attention must be paid to how the practice evolves; there must be a follow-up. “One faces a new challenge everyday!”
During the 16th century, the kissis Negroes settled down in what today is known as the Centro Habana Municipality. They lived in hamlets called cuabales. The combination of both words produced the name Quisicuaba, which is the name given to this area located in the outskirts of the city.
A whole string of decorations (2011 Living Memory Award, 2012 National Neighborhood, 2014 Honoring Honors Acknowledgement…) endorse the experience of the Town Hall, not without some very tough aspects. “Most certainly, you are affected physically and psychologically, it wears you out, but it is a lofty endeavor”, says Dr. Aleman.
Social and cultural project Quisicuaba resides in Maloja # 26 e/ Ángeles y Águila, Comunidad Los Sitios, Centro Habana, La Habana, Cuba
Phone number: (+53)7863 0683
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org