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48,810 Still Can’t get Home in L’Aquila: an Outsider’s Perspective

L'Aquila Remembered by Denysé Bridger

This week the Italian government published ‘official’ statistics on the number of people still unable to move back home and living in some form of temporary accommodation. The figures are hotly debated in Abruzzo, many holding that they are considerably lower than the true number of people seeking a way to return to their former lives before the earthquake struck. What all these people require is a timeline as to when their house will be repaired or viable housing set up, beyond the collection of ice-cream coloured pre-fab bungalows put up in the middle of… nowhere.

The story of L’Aquila should be kept in the news and pressure applied onto both local Abruzzo and Italy’s national governing bodies for restoring or offering serious, viable alternatives in housing for the people whose homes have been completely lost. Drifting & corruption issues haven’t got 48,810 people who were assisted away from their L’Aquila homes still very far in the past year apart from the erection of wall-to-wall scaffolding, whilst 16,641 have been re-housed at this time in temporary accommodation.

You don’t need to be a descendant or have even visited L’Aquila or one of the local villages to support the rebuild; yes it is in a developed country within Europe, but in the same way that we support NGOs rebuilding developing nations the same support & pressure on the Italian government to keep their promise should be applied to L’Aquila.

Denysé BridgerRecently one of Life in Abruzzo’s Canadian readers, the poet & Romantic Fantasy author Denysé Bridger, a self-confessed “happy Italophile bedazzled by its magic, beauty, and culture”, wrote to us asking what she could do to help one year on; she hadn’t been to L’Aquila but she did care about its people. In a world burdened by economic downturn one great thing that can be utilised is trading on one’s own skills, in Denysé’s case her writing and fan base. We asked her to write & research L’Aquila from an outsider’s perspective, and help remind those who have possibly lost touch with this Italian city’s & region’s plight what happened subsequent to the 2009 earthquake, and how they can help in persuading the Italian government to deliver real homes in a timely, organised and legal fashion.

Read all about what Denysé, with the help of her friend & former L’Aquila resident Riccardo Foresi, found out…

For more information about the author please visit her website

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4 Discussions on
“48,810 Still Can’t get Home in L’Aquila: an Outsider’s Perspective”
  • Thank you so much for writing this – it is really a beautiful and inspiring article. I very much appreciated the portion about visiting the region as tourists, both to see and enjoy a wonderful culture in a beautiful part of the world, and to keep the tourism trade going, to help the economy and provide funds to help the whole region. Being an animal lover, I was pleased to see an animal care and rescue group listed as one of the organizations people can send donations to.

    It was also inspiring to read about how some of the people have begun to rebuild using their own strength and their own ideas. Of course, this also shows how much more they will accomplish with more outside help – they obviously have the determination, pride, and courage to carry on, despite such incredible tragedy and destruction.

    I applaud the attempts you and Riccardo are making to keep the needs of this region in the news, and in people's minds, not simply fading into the background. This article provides a powerful statement, and I truly hope it attracts the kind of attention it should.

    R L Stuemke

  • I am sickened by the media's handling of tragedies such as these. It is a hot tickent news item, until the next tragedy comes along, then poof, you never hear another thing. This story needs to be told over and over until these people have at the very least proper shelters to live in, and at best, to completely rebuild and restore that which nature didn't manage to destroy completely. I cannot fathom how the world can continue to turn a blind eye to tragedies such as these. The story touches your heart, the pictures will tear at it. Very well done! Denyse, I am proud to call you my friend. You really outdid yourself in the writing of this.

  • Reading this, the very first thing I feel is a deep sadness for the people and the loss of thier homes and loved ones! The second is the pride I feel at seeing my friend doing something about it and having pride in a place she's never been, then recognized and spoken of in an Italian magazine article!! I think the photos are eye catching and will trigger the reader to have a deeper interest and read the article. At least that's the way it worked for me.

    I honestly, truly hope that it catches people's attention and gets some help for the residents there!

    Colleen Love

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