Integrated community for refugees in heart of Paris

By Ana Ayesa

Paris, 7 Oct (efe-epa).- A community of refugees and French people of different ages, backgrounds and cultures will live together in the heart of Paris in a pioneering social housing initiative.

A group of 23 people will live for one year in the residence in the city’s central 1st arrondissement, which was inaugurated this week.

There are 12 refugees and 11 French citizens, each with their own studio flat with a private kitchen, bathroom and a desk for work or study.

The building also has three common rooms with sofas, space for communal cooking and tables for meetings.

There is a sewing machine, small library and a piano in spaces designed to promote coexistence, training and the creation of community.

Of the 23 new tenants, 14 are men and nine are women aged between 20 and 40, although mostly in the 25 to 29 bracket.

One resident Yara is a 27-year-old political refugee from Syria and a contemporary dance teacher who lived with a French family in Paris before coming to the residence.

“I have the feeling of being at home again, this security allows me to resume my projects, without this tranquility it is difficult to think and concentrate,” she tells Efe.

Clémence, a young French woman who lives in the adjacent apartment, studied architecture and is currently focused on design, mainly on creating spaces that encourage young people to socialize in person.

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