We are Carimar and Maxime, the founders of co-creando. But the project is growing and more and more volunteers are joining – so co-creando is much more than just the two of us!
How it all started …
With Maxime coming from France and Carimar from Venezuela, in 2019 we decided to settle in Mérida, Venezuela with the idea of doing a social project. For many, the idea of coming to live in a country submerged in such a severe crisis is crazy. The most common comment we hear: You will not make it for long.
But despite the economic and environmental instability we want to identify the roads that already exist in Venezuela and support them – to create alternatives to the current lifestyle in which we live.
We want to get rid of the idea of everyone for themselves and welcome the idea of fighting together as a group for sustainable change
For us it is important to put an end to individualistic competitiveness and fight against the feeling of resignation. The feeling that there isn’t much that you can do facing the situation Venezuela or even the environmental situation of the whole planet.
co-creando, as in co-creating because we truly believe that the only way to make meaningful changes and find solutions to social problems is to work together with others, without waiting for a leader to come and save us.
Transitions towards Buen Vivir, because inspired by the international transition movement, we seek the transition to more resilient, healthier communities full of strong local and sustainable livelihoods. Looking at the same time that this transition has as its horizon the ancestral values of the paradigm of “Buen Vivir”, taking care of the balance and harmony of life.
We want to show you that there are ways to make a difference, that there is a path – which can also be a fight path.
It’s sad to see how many people have run away from the country. The situation is so hard and crazy to believe (specially having grown up in a different Venezuela) that I can not imagine just leaving the country without doing anything.
I didn’t study the right thing (ironically I studied Petroleum engineering) but soon after graduating as an engineer I knew that wasn’t my path and and started volunteering a lot (working as an online Spanish teacher in the meantime). Volunteering taught me a lot about the social and sustainable crisis we face in the world. I had the opportunity to live in another country but I returned to my own country – people with the willingness to change things is what Venezuela needs right now.
I hope gardens, compost zones, seed banks and other sustainable projects will multiply so Mérida becomes a more resilient and sustainable city.
My idea is to change the world, starting with local actions. We can cultivate a better life caring for the planet and if I think about the situation in Venezuela for me it is very logical to fight for this way.
Originally I am from France and I moved to Venezula, wanting to share my knowledge about compost and gardens. We’re cultivating not just vegetables but other ways of life. For me this is actually the most important: That not every one only cultivates alone in their corner but that we also build a community.
My longterm vision for Mérida is to change all abandoned land to productive community gardens or green space with fruit trees, communal compost and so on. I hope for a city without cars in downtown, or, at least, a lot less cars! And a compost in every building and where we develop a plan to recuperate water from the roof …