“Gomdalrae Kkummaeul Alley” is an alley of low-rise residential areas in Sinwol-dong where residents who greet each other, eat together, and ponder about community issues together live.
Residents do diverse activities in “Gomdalrae Kkummaeul Alley”. Residents eat together and make and share side dishes every Thursday night. In Yangcheon-gu, there are many double income couples and single households. Residents in the alley started the activities of eating and cooking together to help these people eat dinner and take a rest in a comfortable environment even one day. Many people gather together and share each other’s news while eating together.
Residents also began to ponder about their own community while having face-to-face conversation every week. At that time, some people said that they wanted to clean up the trash in every corner of the community. 40 people discussed how to clean up the trash and put flower pots on the areas where the trash had been piled up. Thanks to these efforts, the trash which used to be under utility poles and walls started to be collected in one area and the alley transformed into the one with flowers. Also, there was mention about an alley festival. Residents plan the festival by themselves and hold it every year by doing performances together with some academic institutes, churches, and volunteer groups, and selling foods. Furthermore, cultural activities such as art therapy for the elderly and practices for kids’ orchestra are done based on residents’ opinions.
What is the “Project to Build a Happy Alley in Our Community”, the umbrella project for Gomdalrae Kkummaeul Alley Project?
This project is to organize a meeting of residents living closely to each other and resolve diverse issues related to people’s living such as cultural, safety, and environmental ones. It is significant that the area where projects are done has been narrowed down from dong to a zone of life, closer to our lives, and project activities have expanded from activities centered on community revitalization to change of landscape. Alley where happiness is carried Gomdalrae Kkummaeul Alley
“Space Together Love” is a community space in Umyeon-dong, Seocho-gu where people take care of children together and share love with neighbors through communication and interaction. Do you remember the low wooden bench where adults in your community gather together and laugh together? “Space Together Love” is such a place. Any residents living in Umyeon-dong can have a friendly conversation and take a rest in a comfortable environment. Above all, children can read books and play together safely.
In this space, people will naturally understand how much co-child care with other parents makes kids happy and healthy. Busy mothers due to not only house chores but also other affairs and busy fathers due to work gather together, continuously think hard about child care, and spare no efforts to make their own children and other children grow well together and be happy. Finally, we could see hope that we can do together, spending the first year 2013 when the space started to be known among other residents through nature exploration, education through playing together with parents, cooking seasonal foods, screening, volunteer activities, etc. and people started to open their hearts towards us, and meeting many parents.
In “Space Together Love”, “Dad, Where Are We Going?”, a tour group consisting of fathers and their children, “Sharala Ukulele”, a music group, “Healthy Dining Table”, and meetings about health, sowing, going out, recycling, and playing are held. Here, children and adults joyfully create a learning space for the community together.
What is the Project to Provide Community Spaces Conducted by＜Space Together Love＞?
The project is to rent idle or proper spaces in the community, build multi-purpose community spaces such as community meeting space, art space, practice room, community cafe, and shelter, and support their operation. It is a growing community project and community hubs where are always open so any residents can visit easily are operated under this project. Each autonomous district assists the hubs’ operation and Seoul Community Support Center investigates spaces, provides training and consulting services, supports networks, etc.
The School of Architecture in Soongsil University has participated in the “Project to Connect between Colleges and Communities” since 2015. They have designed houses considering requirements of residents who have lived in the community for a long period of time, sought solutions for connecting with educational facilities in Dongjak-gu, establishing ties with Seoul Dongjak Gwanak District Office of Education, and had practical training of school designing with students of Jangseung Middle School and creating stairs by collecting students’ opinions. In 2017, university students ran the class to design community spaces for revitalizing the commercial district in front of Soongsil University and opened assignments to residents. As such, the activities to revitalize communities based on citizens’ participation through connection between colleges and communities have been consistently carried out. Accordingly, students who had participated in the activities started to be interested in communities and schools and grew to have ethical responsibility of community by experiencing community more closely.
What is the Project to Connect between Colleges and Communities Conducted by the School of Architecture in Soongsil University?
This project is for colleges to experience cooperation with communities. The classes are conducted in a way for students who don’t have enough experience of communities due to education and social systems which are focused on entering universities to resolve issues through cooperation. This is to create opportunities for college students to have a deep understanding of communities. Also, this becomes the chance for colleges to contribute to revitalization of communities. To this end, we support classes which deal with how to connect with communities and promotes diverse activities for participating students to build a network in a local community
“Snail Community School” is a school which pursues a community centered on a sound education. Students who are community members and main players participate in school operation and residents dream of children’s return to community through learning from other children who are older than them. Since 2015, the school has held a festival led by the youth in a playground where the youth and kids can build a healthy relationship. This has become an opportunity for the youth to join the activities to make playgrounds, public spaces in communities, be significant. In addition, students of Song-gok Girls’ High School are developing new community educational curriculum by sharing their talents with students of nearby elementary schools through the program for learning from each other with values of community. They also organize a career experience program which connects between communities and social economy. “Snail Community School” is doing its activities to build a community where adults and children recover their relationship, gain respect through mutual learning, and interact with each other while growing.
What is the Project to Co-existence of Communities and Schools Carried out by ＜Snail Community School＞?
This is the activity to establish an educational ecology based on cooperation among residents, teachers, students, and parents. The project started in 2015 and covers “residents’ meeting” to prepare for connection between communities and schools and “the support for co-existence of communities and schools” which connects between the two bodies. Hopefully, people can build up their strength to live their daily lives through networks created in communities, their space of life.
In community, there are diverse jobs. Jobs in community may look like other general jobs but they are different since jobs in community are led by oneself within a community network. The Project of Youth Activist for Local Innovation for Seoul-Type New Deal Job is to discover jobs in communities, match young people to jobs, and support them so that they can experience, want to do, and can do community activities. Young people living in communities can start community jobs (activities) only when certain time goes by and they built relationships with other residents. Therefore, we help young people experience community activities, and make time and establish relationship for them to try to do under the project. Two youth activists for local innovation were dispatched to Jungnang Community Support Center. We spare no support for young people so that they can have affection towards their communities despite insufficient financial resources. Dispatched young people also do their best to assist residents, do activities, and promote community projects depending on their tasks for revitalizing the community. Additionally, they built Jungnang Youth Network to conduct diverse activities for connecting among local young people. How fast young people in communities settle down and how good their quality of living in communities depend on how the local communities recognize and support their living in communities. We cheer for Jungnang Community Support Team which aids the youth to be recognized as workers doing their duties with satisfaction depending on their desires and values within communities(relationship), not just the ones who offer labor, and to become main players of community activities as community members.
What is “the Project to Develop Youth Community Activists” to Enable＜The Project of Youth Activist for Local Innovation for Seoul Type New Deal Job＞?
Under the project, we support diverse experiments and attempts to promote activities for the youth to understand communities(local areas), space of life, and participate in the process of recovering relationship of living in communities as members of the communities. Young people’s ideas to provide jobs in communities and boost community activists are backed and also educational projects for young people to discover their colleagues, connect with them, and establish a network for voluntary emotional support for local changes are being carried out.