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A look at the third Rendezvous of the VINCI Foundations

October 2017

The third Rendezvous of the VINCI Foundations took place at Hasard Ludique - a day full of enthusiastic exchanges between public and private players on citizen initiatives in low-income priority neighbourhoods.

Monday, 9 October 2017, 9 am. The guests arrive at Hasard Ludique, a cultural venue tucked away in the former St-Ouen station, rehabilitated in April 2017. Wooden furniture, cork panels, pastel colours and tropical plants decorate the premises, developed by the Fondation VINCI pour la Cité. The station's old passenger concourse, now a modular space used as a concert hall, restaurant area or conference venue, is starting to fill up.

The morning's work is organised around a round-table discussion bringing together four people, men and women, active in the priority neighbourhoods. They discuss the consequences of the city's urban policy, which vary widely depending on the area in question Anthony DAGUET, firs deputy to the Mayor of Aubervilliers, summarises the situation: "85% of the area is classified as a priority neighbourhood in the city. Last year, the percentage was only 78%. The city's urban policy has been in existence for 40 years. It has produced some great things, but it hasn't allowed us to avoid a certain pauperisation."

Despite their different perspectives, they tend to share a similar vision. They are convinced of the citizen and collaborative potential of the men and women living in these neighbourhoods. And they agree on the crucial importance of listening closely to residents in order to foster citizen initiatives. "If we were to put as much energy into showcasing positive initiatives as we do in publicising the most serious problems, we would make a great leap forward. Why give a platform and a hearing to people who have no legitimacy in the public space without focusing more on those who are working tirelessly for the good of all?," says Karim MAHMOUD-VINTAM, general delegate for Cités d’Or, whose plea earns a wave of applause from the audience.

The morning continues with a presentation of the Cité Solidaire programme organised in France and in Germany by the Fondation VINCI pour la Cité and VINCI Stiftung. This programme aims to support the non-profit network in cities where VINCI Group companies are present. It takes the form of a call for local projects and each campaign supports around 12 non-profit organisations.

Organisations supported by the Fondation VINCI pour la Cité were able to present their actions during the day and inspire participants. They included ICI!, KYGEL Théâtre, and Ville Simplement.

Some 50 people stay on for the afternoon to work in groups on how digital technology can support citizen initiatives in the priority neighbourhoods.

A publication describing the discussions of this day devoted to the VINCI Foundations Rendezvous will be released before the end of the year.