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AROUND NAPOLI
Charitable Events in the Villa Comunale
by Jeff Matthews
A number of charitable organizations and local sponsors joined forces beginning the week of April 24 to bring to the grounds of the Villa Comunale two significant exhibitions (1) to raise funds for children in developing countries, and (2) to raise public awareness of what it means to be old and alone.

The Villa Comunale is the long seaside park in the Chiaia section of Naples; it stretches from the Mergellina section of Naples in the west to the tunnel at the east end of the park that joins Chiaia with Naples proper and the main port. First, a local cultural association, "Napoli nostra" in collaboration with the VIS (Italian acronym for International Volunteer Organisation for Development) invited local artists simply to show up and paint--whatever they want--on a series (more than 100) of very large canvases set up near the Anton Dohrn aquarium, the large building that dominates the center of the park. By early Monday morning, a number of artists were already at work. After the art work has been on open-air display for a while, the paintings will be taken down and auctioned off on the premises of the Gran Caff Gambrinus, the historic caf across piazza Plebiscito from the Royal Palace. The proceeds will go to the VIS and be channelled to services that provide for needy children in various parts of the world.

Second, the Community of Sant'Egidio is sponsoring a large and impressive photographic exhibition from April 22 to May 6 at the Casina Pompeiana, a small building on the north side of the Villa Comunale across from the large Dohrn aquarium. The exhibit is entitled "Gli anziani senza amore muoiono" (The Elderly Die Without Love). The "Community of Sant'Egidio" is a charitable organization begun in Rome in 1968, in the period following the Second Vatican Council. It is a "Church public lay association" with more than 50,000 members in more than 70 countries throughout the world. It stresses caring for the poor and elderly.
27/4/2006