La Campana Altamira is a very diverse community, because of its diverse conditions in the same territory. Some parts of the community are very well connected to the city, but others are isolated from the rest of the city because of the topography and public transportation access. I had the opportunity to work with a couple of communities there, where the first steps of Hyperlocal started. We made a fablab with activities with kids of the community for a year and we built a small public space there, too. With this project we met two key persons. One is Victor, an architect with a lot of passion and commitment to work with participatory projects and Rene who was an unknown self educated gardener, but now he is involved in most of the projects of his community. 

Through both of them we reached the community of the first formal Hyperlocal project. The approach to understand it has to start from the bottom of the hill where it is located, because there if you drive with your own car a 5 min ride through a steep hill or you can take a beetle as public transport. Up there we met 8 families very excited to work on this project. From day one they were all there interested to hear what it was all about and how to be part of it, because they understood the necessity to have alternative activities for the children during the pandemic where they could all participate as a familie and as a community.

My role there was to engage with the community and one of the contact persons to transmit and clear technical doubts about the activities. So going there several times during the pandemic gave me the opportunity to share moments with them and see the development of the project from very close first hand, because I could engage specifically with the families recognizing their potentials and opportunity areas. Now the project is finished, but I hope we can keep doing projects there in the future because we found a unique community with a lot of work to be know and a lot of potential, where the main resource is their own people and their will to improve their community through education and projects that benefit themselves.

Rafael Machado G.

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