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Our Story

The Association

The Association was founded on 16 November 1990, thanks to the initiative of Father Benvenuto Mendeni SJ, a Jesuit missionary who arrived directly to Padua from Chad to cover the role of Director of the Antonianum Youth Center. The sensitivity of the people he met was the fertile ground the Association grew from and soon the founding nucleus received the first signals of migratory pressure in the city, above all from North African countries. With the support of a group of young people from the Student Missionary League, which in August that year had taken part in a work camp in Burkina Faso, the Association embarked on the adventure we are still part of today.

Valuing everyone’s contribution

From the simple desire to help migrants in difficulty, over time the Association has arrived at specifically receiving political refugees and international protection holders. Popoli Insieme subsequently became part of the territorial network of the Astalli Center in Rome (Jesuit Refugee Service), whose mission is valuing everyone’s contribution, advancing common projects, working together throughout the entire national territory on similar objectives and aspiring to the same values. By now, collaboration has been consolidated concerning cultural projects, in particular those involving students in schools and raising awareness in society on the topics of common interest. However, the network also allows experimenting new projects of first and second level welcoming, transferring the experience of those who have been involved in the service longer in different contexts.

Some milestones along our path over the years:

Registration in the Municipal Registry of Padua for free associations at No. 650 in the area “Peace, human rights and international cooperation”.

Registration in the Provincial Registry of Padua for free associations at No. 31/D in the category “Culture, Cultural Heritage, Education and Training”.

Registration in the Regional Registry of Volunteer Organizations at No. PD0741, therefore becoming a legal Non-Profit Organization according to statutory law.