June 29, 2022

About ten specimens were planted today in the area located in front of the Pasaje Río Mataquito. The place was an abandoned space and with the help of the community it wants to be transformed into a sports center. Today they received the first donation of Quillay and Pimientos, by CMPC, and soon the planting of the rest of the species will continue.

“I have been living here for 21 years and this used to be a dump, people used it that way. When we arrived, everything was closed because they were going to build houses that in the end they didn’t. They began to steal the lock that was there, which was made of wood, and we were exposed. That’s where garbage began to be thrown away,” explains Marcela Barahona, president of the “Ubuntu” Park Advancement Committee, a space in the Bajos Mena sector, in the Puente Alto district.

Fearing that the space would be taken over by other people and used for drug trading and parties, the neighbors organized themselves in shifts and defended the place in order to transform it into a sports center. In addition, they collected funds to be able to buy a perimeter fence and some implements were obtained to create games and a soccer field.

Franco Lara, president of the Licanthropus Basketball Sports Club and a resident of Bajos Mena, says that “this was pure garbage, on maps of Santiago this came out as ‘Dump of Bajos Mena’ and with the neighbors we wanted to change that. Therefore we clean in full sunshine, dug, zipped up, pooled resources on hot dogs sales, and held various events, all to get it back. I hope that this will be very valuable, especially for the little ones, and that future generations will enjoy it”.

With the intention of helping this community and improving this community sector, Melyna Montes, a social communicator and activist from Atenas de Mena, contacted CMPC to request a donation of trees for the sector, which today together with neighbors were planted in World Tree Day framework. “I feel very proud of all this that has been put together. The young people will no longer be in full sun, the neighbors will have a recreation place where they can play sports and they will no longer be locked up in their houses. We needed it a lot, it only remains to thank you for putting yourself in our shoes, for knowing the territory, for taking the time to get to know us and for this tremendous gift that is oxygen, it is nature and it is life”.

From CMPC, Pía Fernández, Head of Liaison for the Metropolitan Region, explained that “we believe that we have to develop the territory together with the community and this type of initiative, where we are invited to participate and be part of this space, leaves us very proud”.

Francisco García, a resident of the sector who participated in the plantation, hopes that this park “will be a sports center where people can practice sports: soccer, basketball, skating. Here in Bajos Mena everything is remote, you have to make time and it’s complicated. Here we can make a contour so that people do sports, run, ride a bicycle, so that they do not have to go out to the road and risk delinquency.