"A HEART IN THE STATION": PROJECT STARTED BY ENEL CUORE ONLUS AND FERROVIE DELLO STATO TO ASSIST THE HOMELESS

Published on Monday, 5 January 2009

  • Enel Cuore Onlus and Ferrovie dello Stato combine efforts to promote a large solidarity project aimed at assisting marginalized people — mainly the homeless — by providing them shelter and giving them the opportunity to reunite with their families and reintegrate into the community.
  • Over the next three years, the project will focus on expanding and building reception centers in the vicinity of 18 train stations across Italy. The first stations in 2009 will be: Roma Termini, Napoli Centrale, Pescara, Genoa and Catania


Rome, 5 January, 2009 – Enel Cuore Onlus and Ferrovie dello Stato (the Italian railways company) have signed a framework agreement to start a project called "Un Cuore in Stazione" (A Heart in the Station), with the objective of bringing relief to homeless and marginalized people who live in areas surrounding train stations.

The aim of “Un Cuore in Stazione” is to enlarge and open reception and help centers near train stations to welcome those living in difficult situations and accompany them through a process of redirection and reintegration into the fabric of the society. Over a three-year period, the project will be implemented in 15 cities and 18 train stations in Italy.

Ferrovie dello Stato will allow the use of its buildings located near train stations, while Enel Cuore Onlus will finance the renovation of facilities as well as purchasing equipment and materials needed for the project. Enel Cuore has earmarked approximately 3 million euros for the project.

The welcoming centers will be run by local associations that, in addition to offering preliminary reception services, will orient guests on how to gain access to services and social and healthcare structures and help them get their papers and find a job.

The first train stations where “Un Cuore in Stazione” will be implemented are Roma Termini, Napoli Centrale, Genoa, Pescara and Catania. Plans include: the expansion and restructuring of the Day Center at Roma Termini; the opening of a new Help Center at the Pescara station; the purchase of a new mobile office and camper for the prevention of drug addiction in Naples; the enlargement of an Help Center in Genoa; the renovation of facilities and the purchase of a transportation vehicle in Catania. During the 2009-2010 period, the project will target stations in Milan, Messina, Florence, Grosseto, Chivasso, Venice, Napoli Campi Flegrei, Roma Tiburtina, Salerno, Turin, Bologna, Foggia and Roma Ostiense.


"Now more than ever, social marginalization has become an emergency that requires targeted interventions to alleviate distress, with reception centers and services. ‘Un Cuore in Stazione’ originated with this objective from the commitment of Enel Cuore towards solidarity for marginalized people and the community through concrete, tangible initiatives," said Fulvio Conti, President of Enel Cuore Onlus.

“Addressing situations of poverty is a social responsibility shared by all large corporations, including Ferrovie dello Stato," stressed Managing Director Mauro Moretti. With ‘Un Cuore in Stazione’, the Ferrovie dello Stato Group reaffirms its commitment to the social responsibility of corporations and focuses on the situation of poverty commonly found around train stations. Driven by the goal of combining security and social solidarity, this commitment led to the construction in 2002 of initial-reception and orientation centers (help centers) in Italy's main train stations."

Social marginalization is a large-scale problem that affects the entire country, especially train stations, which have long been a safe haven for homeless people with various problems (alcoholism, drug addiction, mental illness, etc.). The problem has worsened dramatically in recent years due to the strong flow of immigrants previously unseen in Italy. It must be addressed by implementing measures aimed at both security and solidarity.

In pursuing its social commitment to the community and those living in disadvantaged situations, Enel Cuore Onlus joined with Ferrovie dello Stato to organize the "Un Cuore in Stazione" project, with the objective of providing relief to homeless people and accompanying them through a process of reintegration into the community in order to improve the livability of Italy's train stations and the quality of their product.

Enel Cuore, Enel's ONLUS (Italian non-profit social organization), was established four years ago with the objective of planning social solidarity initiatives in Italy and internationally. The initiatives promoted by the association in partnership with other associations, NGOs, institutions and volunteers are tangible, concrete, measurable and address specific areas, such as: social and healthcare assistance and reception centers for disadvantaged people, especially children, the elderly and sick and disabled persons. Since 2003, Enel Cuore has invested 20 million euros and carried out 150 projects.

Generale | January, 05 2009

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