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Family hosting migrants wins Eu prize

Family hosting migrants wins Eu prize
By Giorgia Orlandi
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Antonio Calò and his wife Nicoletta opened the doors of their home in Veneto to host six migrants of African origins. Their model has been so successful that it was awarded the European Citizen's prize 2018


We travelled to Camalò, a small Italian town of about 2.000 nearTreviso. Here Antonio and his wife Nicoletta three years ago decided to host 6 migrants of African origins. They are all in their twenties - about the same age as their four sons who live with them. An experience turned into a workshop ad a hosting model that this year was awarded the European Citizen’s prize.

A hosting model that has been dubbed 6 + 6 x 6 which stands for 6 migrants for 5.000 residents and so on. Times 6 because the group of professionals who has been hired to follow the group from the doctor to the psychologist are able to serve a total of six groups (six groups of 6 migrants each). At a time when the migration policies are dividing Eu countries the idea has been praised for its capacity to strengthen the dialogue between the people.

The migrants are particularly proud of the prize, one of them Siaka - tell us why : "I could not think that I could live with an italian family. We won the prize because everyone thought it was going to be impossible - us instead we showed that it was going to be possible".

Today Mr and Mrs Calò both teachers live in a house that is part of the San Michele Arcangelo church in Treviso. In the first months - their project was financed through both Eu and national funds that have been managed by a local Ngo.

Nicoletta Ferrara, Calò’s wife: "our first dinners were full of emotions the boys were so happy to be welcomed by a family - by a mother and a father. They immediately started to call us this way".

Calò's model has been challenged not only by the critics coming from the local community – but also by those of the people who think differently especially from within the anti-immigration League party. It’s the first party here according to the latest general elections’ results. Recently Treviso elected a League party mayor.

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