Two apartments renovated to establish new pathways for youth autonomy in the North of Catania.


The Project

We find ourselves in one of the most historic locations in Sicily, in the city of Catania, specifically in the Barriera district. It is from here that Barrio21 comes to life, derived from the Spanish "Barrio" (neighbourhood) and "21," representing the age at which young adults – both Italian and foreign – are expected to transition out of temporary accommodation systems and start walking on their own, often without the necessary tools. Barrio21 is a building that provides two apartments where young men and women who have recently come of age, hailing from vulnerable situations, are welcomed and supported by a team from Consorzio Il Nodo in pursuing their growth and autonomy. Specifically, they are assisted in paths towards higher education, university, vocational training, and guided through their initial work experiences, helping them find occupations that align with their educational and life goals. This journey is encapsulated within the framework of co-housing, allowing these young individuals to share every small achievement in pleasant company.

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The identity

The identity conceived for Barrio21 aims to embrace the concept of a neighbourhood, inviting to a fresh start, almost like a modern-day fairy tale. The name originates from the Spanish word “Barrio”, which means neighbourhood, and “21”, signifying the age at which young people typically complete temporary assistance programs and require support to achieve their independence.

A project that provides the tools to guide young men and women who have recently reached adulthood, coming from vulnerable situations, towards independence.

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The Partner

Consorzio Il Nodo was founded in 2000 with the aim of strengthening and making more concrete the relationship among multiple social cooperatives that had been active for years in Catania and Acireale, providing services to individuals and facilitating the employment of vulnerable and disadvantaged individuals. The goal was to establish itself as a system capable of bringing out a real change in the community, with a focus on supporting young people and those facing difficulties, through hospitality and integration. Social enterprise was chosen as the means to turn dreams and projects into reality.

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