Results of the Research Exploration of the Cultural Diversity and Intercultural Dialogue in Tarragona (Catalonia)
Reality is always more complex than it seems at first sight. As we experienced yesterday, if you want to know something more about migrants and local people living together in Tarragona you have two options: you can ask the local institutions or you can observe and talk directly to them in the streets. We chose both. But, eventually, the outcomes were totally different.
Asking the institutions happened to be more difficult than we expected. In fact, the public officer working at the Social Affairs department had no time for answering to our questions and we only got statistic: “The 18% of the total population comes from a foreign country, and the 40% out of it is from Morocco”. It is not necessary to go far, you just have to walk along the rambla or around the Central Market, to discover that culture diversity in Tarragona is everywhere.
Diop, a young man from Senegal, has been living and working here for seven years but his dream is still to come back to Africa. Rashid and Mohammed are two maroccain sellers that don’t feel accepted at all but they love to take part in the local Fiesta and drink alcohol. Iumpi Fu is a Chinese cooker who works in a Chinese restaurant, dresses Chinese clothes, goes out just with Chinese people and doesn’t speak Spanish very well while, by contrast, Maria Asunciao, an half Angolan and half Portuguese 60 years old woman, who escaped from the civil war, which cancelled all her family, now is a receptionist in a local catholic school. She is totally integrated, her life is here now and she is very happy. Coming here for work, escaping from conflicts, changing your life is a nowadays reality and we have to face it in the most serious and open minded way. This is not a joke, it is life.