Alex Carrascosa (EDE): “The ability to build trust is the great strength of the ‘opengelas’”.

Alex Carrascosa is a consultant for EDE Fundazioa, one of the entities that participates as a partner in the BIRTUOSS project, through which the Opengela programme is being developed. Through listening, EDE Fundazioa collects testimonies from all the people involved in this European urban regeneration project: their concerns, their complaints, their assessments, their proposals for improvement, among others.

In this interview, he explains the role of the foundation in the project, and provides details of the study they carried out at the end of 2023 on the assessment of the service of the neighbourhood offices (‘opengelas’) by the different people involved in the pilot experiences in the neighbourhoods of Txonta and Otxarkoaga: the process of elaboration, the weaknesses and strengths detected in the service, the lessons learned, the most mentioned proposals for improvement and the conclusions they drew from the study.

Which is the role of EDE Fundazioa in the Opengela project?

Throughout the process of urban regeneration, and in particular the rehabilitation of buildings, we take care of the social and human side of the work for the people involved. Not only for the people who will experience or live the effects of the refurbishment, but also for all those involved in the works.

EDE Fundazioa listens to the beneficiaries first and foremost because they are in vulnerable situations. After all, these urban regeneration processes are carried out in old housing estates, many of which are social housing estates. These are buildings with very simple dwellings that do not meet energy efficiency requirements, have accessibility problems or are affected by multiple problems. In addition, their neighbourhoods are generally elderly and all these habitats need to be adapted to their needs. This is why these urban regeneration processes are carried out wherever there is a population, an urban centre or a group of people with needs that require economic, training and communication support to carry out works of this magnitude, as well as institutional support and assistance. What we are doing is listening to the reality of these people.

You recently presented the conclusions of a study to Opengela’s partners. Tell us more in detail about it.

The study basically consisted of identifying all the professional sectors involved in urban regeneration interventions and the beneficiaries, in other words, all the people involved. We wanted to identify the real people involved in the process of building rehabilitation or urban regeneration as a whole. We are talking about three main groups. The first would be the beneficiaries or owners of the dwellings in the buildings to be refurbished; the second would be the staff of the ‘opengela’ itself, and the third would be the professional entities that have been involved in the building rehabilitation and urban regeneration works. The idea was to locate the reference people in these groups, interview them and gather as much sensitive information as possible from these three groups. And here I would like to clarify something to avoid confusion: what we are assessing in the report is not so much the degree of satisfaction with regard to building renovation or urban regeneration works, but with regard to the Opengela service. Therefore, the contents and results of the report revolve around the service from the perspective of its protagonists: the professionals who offer the service, the beneficiaries who experience it and the professionals who rely on it.

How was the process of carrying out the study?

First, we identified the stakeholders. Once identified, we proceeded to look for the reference people for each group. The study was carried out for two neighbourhoods, Otxarkoaga in Bilbao and Txonta in Eibar. Therefore, we interviewed the Municipal Housing Agency of Bilbao in the case of Otxarkoaga and the Local Development Agency Degebesa in the case of Txonta and, from there, we located the teams or people who are providing the service in the offices in order to interview them. Once the office teams had been interviewed, they helped us to contact the neighbours who wanted to give an interview or fill a survey about the service. In the survey we asked questions about the accessibility of the office or the information provided by the ‘opengela’ to the neighbourhoods; about counselling and accompaniment; about funding mechanisms, if any; and about the post-rehabilitation experience. On this last point, it was not possible to speak in absolute terms in either of the two places because there were works still to be completed or started.

In addition, through the ‘opengelas’ we also located professionals who had been involved in the works, which are the architectural firms, the construction companies and other people and entities involved such as the property administrators. They were invited to two face-to-face meetings. The interviews were very valuable as they brought us very interesting recommendations.

Going into the study in more detail, what were the main strengths of the Opengela service that you identified?

The great strength identified is the unanimity of the positive judgement of the service. All three groups consulted gave it a very positive assessment.  In the case of the neighbours, it is even more positive because the Opengela service is a technical ally with authority in different areas and helps them as an intermediary. The fact of having an entity next to them that is perfectly familiar with the technical and legal context favours mediation between the needs of the users and the product offered by the professional entities. This relationship, which is usually very vertical and unequal, is balanced and horizontalised thanks to the ‘opengela’.

At the same time, however, the service also has a very positive effect on the professional entities, as it acts as an intermediary that lightens their workload and also acts as a kind of filter. The works bring with them problems of all kinds that affect personal and everyday aspects of people’s daily lives. The neigbourhood office also helped them to ‘humanise’ the service, as it made them aware of how they often operate more from the interest of the company than from the interest of the client.

Another of the great strengths of ‘opengela’ is the fact of having a team that combines different profiles. This multidisciplinary nature has been covered in Otxarkoaga due to the role played in large part by Bilbao Municipal Housing, but in Txonta it was not possible due to various circumstances; in fact, there was only one person working in the office. For this reason, it is necessary for the new offices to have four clearly identified profiles: technical, legal, administrative and social.

What about weaknesses?

I wanted to emphasise this last profile (the social one) through the need to have social workers, who are figures that all inclusion systems have and who are fundamental to work as neural connectors between the demands of rehabilitation and the realities of the people affected. In fact, it could be said that social workers are the ones who activate and develop the most human sensitivity of the rest of the necessary profiles.

In the end, we are talking about a sum of owners and tenants and, even if all possible mechanisms are put in place, there will always be at least one cohabitation unit in a dwelling with a problem that makes it difficult or impossible for it to fit into this complex chain. As soon as one link fails, the chain is completely damaged. This is why the figure of the social worker is essential, as he or she not only accompanies and detects what is there, but is also particularly sensitive to those episodes that can break the chain.

There is also another aspect related to this, and that is that exclusion involves many aspects of personal life, and just as a situation of personal disadvantage can become chronic or complex, in some populations it can even become ‘zoned’. It is therefore necessary to understand what happens in these places, because it is not a question of providing solutions to the physical conditions of some dwellings, but of contributing to the solution of the reality of people in very critical situations.

What do you think have been the main lessons you have learned during these months of work?

All the groups and people interviewed agreed on the need for the Opengela service to cover the different technical, social, legal and administrative areas, but also to address relational skills. This has been extremely important, the fact of ‘personalisation’, since in the end, at the end of each intervention, there is a group of people who are going to receive that impact, whether good or bad.

Another issue that was also addressed was that of financial aid. Two problems arose with regard to financial aid. On the one hand, the concurrence of different lines of funding and their lack of coordination in terms of both timing and management, which continues to be a challenge for the service. On the other hand, from the point of view of the owners, the time of payment of the subsidies does not coincide with the deadline for payment of the works, which requires the payment of large sums of money in advance. This adds to the challenge of providing financing mechanisms to communities and, above all, to the most vulnerable people.

Which proposals for improvement were most frequently mentioned?

There is one issue that should not be forgotten, which is the maintenance of the staff (or subrogation) of the ‘opengela’, at least for the duration of the rehabilitation works, including post-rehabilitation. The idea that we must keep in mind is that the neighbours, during the sensitive period of the works, should have the same reference people in the office, given that the greatest difficulty, as in any human process, is the generation of trust, which all the agents point out as the ‘key’ of the service. Once this trust has been created, it would be senseless to interrupt continuity and even change the people in charge of the office for a purely administrative requirement, as this would distort the service and cause enormous unease among users. In short, it is a question of adjusting all deadlines or administrative mechanisms to respect and care for this trust, which, I insist, is the most precious value of the ‘opengela’.

EDE Fundazioa, as a social partner of Opengela, what conclusions have you drawn from this study?

Opengela, whether public or public-private, is still a service. As such, it is established in the face of citizens and, therefore, its fundamental value is the generation of trust. In fact, although it is conceived as a ‘one-stop shop’, it is rather an open room – as we have witnessed – where the neighbourhood can express itself and be assisted. This model of attention differs from the classic counter where we are often dismissed as if we were a problem. Opengela operates the other way around: understanding people as part of the solution. Another associated characteristic is that it acts as a small office, more than ‘of inclusion’, but at least ‘of attention’, since it is a space that is aware of the different levels and impacts that affect the realities of building rehabilitation and urban regeneration and addresses these levels consequently through a multi-profile service.


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Co-funded by the European Union. The views and opinions expressed are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the EU or CINEA. Neither the European Union nor the funding authority can be held responsible for them.

Alex Carrascosa (EDE): “Konfiantza sortzeko gaitasuna da ‘opengelen’ indar handia”

Alex Carrascosa EDE Fundazioko aholkularia da, Opengela programa garatzen ari den BIRTUOSS proiektuko bazkide gisa parte hartzen duen erakundeetako bat. Entzuteko lan baten bidez, hirien berroneratzea zabaltzea ardatz duen programa europar honetan parte hartzen duten pertsona guztien testigantzak jasotzen ditu: haien kezkak, kexak, balorazioak, hobetzeko proposamenak, etab.

Elkarrizketa honetan, fundazioak proiektuan izan duen zeregina azaldu du, eta Txonta eta Otxarkoaga auzoetako esperientzia pilotuetan parte hartu duten pertsonek hurbiltasun-bulegoen (‘opengelen’) zerbitzuari buruz 2023. urtearen amaieran egin zuten azterketaren xehetasunak eman ditu: elaborazio-prozesua, zerbitzuan hautemandako ahuleziak eta indarguneak, ikasitako lezioak, hobekuntza-proposamen aipatuenak eta azterlanetik atera zituzten ondorioak.

Zein da EDE Fundazioaren zeregina Opengela proiektuan?

Hiri-berroneratze prozesu osoan, zehazki eraikinak birgaitzeko obretan, gu alderdi sozialaz arduratzen gara, eta bertan esku hartzen duten pertsonen lanik gizatiarrenaren aldea jorratzeaz. Ez bakarrik errehabilitazioaren ondorioak esperimentatu edo biziko dituzten pertsonena, baita obra horretan parte hartzen duten eragile guztiena ere.

EDE Fundazioak entzuteko lana egiten du, lehenik eta behin onuradunen artean, egoera zaurgarrian baitaude. Izan ere, azkenean, hiri-berroneratze prozesu horiek etxebizitza-parke zaharretan egiten ari dira, horietako asko erregimen sozialean. Etxebizitza oso sinpleak dituzten eraikinak dira, energia-eraginkortasuneko baldintzei erantzuten ez dietenak, irisgarritasun-zailtasunak dituztenak edo askotariko arazoak dituztenak. Eta, gainera, herritarrak, oro har, adinekoak dira, eta habitat horiek guztiak beren beharretara egokitu behar dira. Beraz, hiri-berroneratze-prozesu horiek populazio bat, biztanle-gune bat edo premia ekonomiko, formatibo eta komunikazionalak dituzten pertsonen multzo bat dagoen edo identifikatuta dagoen lekuetan egiten dira, eta euskarria eta laguntza instituzionala behar dute. Pertsona horien errealitatea entzuten dugu.

Duela gutxi, azterlan baten ondorioak aurkeztu zenizkieten Opengelako bazkideei. Kontaiguzu xehetasun gehiago zeri buruz ari den.

Azterlana, funtsean, hiri-berroneratzeko esku-hartzeetan parte hartzen duten sektore profesional guztiak eta onuradunak identifikatzean zetzan, hau da, inplikatutako pertsona guztiak identifikatzean. Eraikinak birgaitzeko edo hiria osotasunean berroneratzeko prozesuan zerikusia duten hezur-haragizko pertsonak identifikatzea. Hiru talde handi ditugu. Lehenengoa, birgaituko diren eraikinetan dauden etxebizitzen onuradunak edo jabeak izango lirateke; bigarrena, opengeletako langileak; eta hirugarrena, eraikinak birgaitzeko eta hiria berroneratzeko lanetan parte hartu duten erakunde profesionalak. Helburua zen talde horietako erreferentziazko pertsonak aurkitzea, elkarrizketatzea eta hiru talde horiei buruzko informazio posible eta sentikor guztia biltzea. Eta hemen bai, ñabardura bat egin nahi dut nahasteak saihesteko: txostenean baloratzen duguna ez da eraikinak birgaitzeko edo hiria berroneratzeko obrei buruz dagoen gogobetetze-maila, Opengela zerbitzuari buruzkoa baizik. Beraz, txostenaren edukiak eta emaitzak zerbitzuaren ingurukoak dira: zerbitzuaren protagonistak, zerbitzua eskaintzen duten langileak, zerbitzua eskaintzen duten onuradunak eta horretan laguntzen duten profesionalak.

Nolakoa izan zen azterlana egiteko prozesua?

Lehenik, interes-taldeak identifikatu genituen. Identifikatu ondoren, talde bakoitzeko erreferentziazko pertsonak bilatu genituen. Azterlana bi auzori buruz egin zen: Otxarkoagari buruz (Bilbo) eta Txontari buruz (Eibar). Beraz, Otxarkoagaren kasuan Bilboko Udal Etxebizitzak erakundearekin eta Txontaren kasuan Degebesa Tokiko Garapen Agentziarekin elkarrizketatu ginen, eta, hortik aurrera, bulegoetan zerbitzua ematen ari diren talde edo pertsonak aurkitu genituen, haiekin elkarrizketatzeko. Bulegoetako taldeak elkarrizketatu ondoren, elkarrizketa bat egin nahi zuten edo zerbitzuari buruzko galdetegi bati erantzun nahi zioten bizilagunekin harremanetan jartzen lagundu ziguten. Galdera-sortan galdera hauek egiten genituen: bulegorako irisgarritasunari buruz edo ‘opengelatik’ bizilagunei emandako informazioari buruz; aholkularitzari eta laguntzari buruz; finantzaketa-mekanismoei buruz, halakorik izan bazen; eta berroneratzearen ondoko esperientziari buruz. Azken puntu horretan ezin izan zen termino absolututan hitz egin bi lekuetako batean ere, oraindik amaitu gabeko edo hasteke zeuden obrak zeudelako.

Gainera, ‘opengelen’ bidez, obretan esku hartu zuten profesionalak ere aurkitu genituen: arkitektura-estudioak, eraikuntza-enpresak eta tartean zeuden beste pertsona eta erakunde batzuk, hala nola finken administratzaileak. Idatzi eta bi bilera presentzialetara gonbidatu genituen. Elkarrizketek balio handia izan zuten, oso gomendio interesgarriak ekarri baitzizkiguten.

Azterlanean xehetasun handiagoz sartzearren: zeintzuk izan ziren Opengela zerbitzuaren indargune nagusiak?

Identifikatutako indar handiena zerbitzuaren iritzi positiboaren inguruko adostasuna da. Kontsultatutako hiru taldeek oso modu positiboan baloratu zuten. Auzotarren kasuan positiboagoa da, Opengela zerbitzua aliatu teknikoa delako, hainbat esparrutan autoritatea duena eta solaskide gisa laguntzen diena. Testuinguru tekniko eta juridikoa ondo ezagutzen duen erakunde bat ondoan izateak erabiltzaileen premien eta erakunde profesionalek eskaintzen duten produktuaren arteko bitartekaritza ahalbidetzen du. Harreman hori, normalean, oso bertikala eta desorekatua izaten da; ‘opengelari’ esker, orekatu eta horizontalizatu egiten da.

Baina, aldi berean, erakunde profesionalentzat ere oso eragin positiboa du zerbitzuak, lana arintzen dien bitartekotza-lana egiten baitu, eta, gainera, iragazki moduko bat da. Lanek era guztietako problematikak dakartzate berekin, pertsonen egunerokotasunaren alderdi pertsonaletan eta egunerokoetan eragiten dutenak. Opengelak «telefono gorri» horretatik askatzen ditu. Era berean, bulegoak zerbitzua «gizatiartzen» laguntzen zien; izan ere, askotan enpresaren interesetik gehiago jarduten da bezeroaren interesetik baino.

Opengelaren beste indargune handi bat profil desberdinak konbinatzen dituen talde bat izatea da. Otxarkoagan, neurri handi batean Udal Etxebizitzek izan duten rolak bete du diziplinartekotasun hori, baina Txontan ezinezkoa izan zen, hainbat arrazoirengatik; izan ere, pertsona bakarra zegoen bulegoan. Horregatik, beharrezkoa da eratzen diren bulego berrietan edo dagoeneko irekita daudenetan argi identifikatutako lau profil egotea: teknikoa, legala, administratiboa eta soziala.

Eta ahuleziak?

Azken profil hori (soziala) nabarmendu nahi nuen, gizarte-langileak izateko premiaren bidez. Izan ere, figura horiek inklusio-sistema guztiek dituzte, eta funtsezkoak dira errehabilitazioaren eskakizunen eta kaltetutako pertsonen errealitateen arteko lotura neuronal gisa lan egiteko. Izan ere, esan liteke gizarte-langileek aktibatzen eta garatzen dutela beharrezko gainerako profilen sentsibilitaterik gizatiarrena.

Azkenean, jabe eta maizter multzo bati buruz ari gara, eta, mekanismo posible guztiak bultzatzen badira ere, beti egongo da gutxienez bizikidetza-unitate bat etxebizitza batean kate konplexu horretan engranatzea zailduko edo eragotziko dion arazo batekin. Katebegi batek huts egiten duen ezeri ez baitzaio katea erabat kaltetzen. Hori dela eta, gizarte-langilearen figura ezinbesteko bihurtzen da; izan ere, dagoena laguntzeaz eta detektatzeaz gain, bereziki sentibera da engranajea hautsi dezaketen gertakari horiekiko.

Horrekin lotutako beste alderdi bat ere badago: bazterketak bizitza pertsonalaren alderdi asko hartzen ditu bere baitan, eta desabantaila pertsonaleko egoera kroniko bihurtu edo konplexuago bihurtu daitekeen bezala, populazio batzuetan «zonifikatu» ere egin daiteke. Beraz, beharrezkoa da ulertzea zer gertatzen den leku horietan, kontua ez baita etxebizitzen baldintza fisikoei irtenbideak ematea, bizkar gainean motxila astunak dituzten pertsonen errealitatea konpontzen laguntzea baizik.

Zure ustez, zeintzuk izan dira hilabete hauetan ikasi dituzuen ikasgai nagusiak?

Elkarrizketatutako kolektibo eta pertsona guztiak bat zetozen Opengela zerbitzuak arlo tekniko, sozial, legal eta administratibo guztiak barne hartzeko premian, baina harreman-eskumenei ere erantzun behar zien. Hori oso garrantzitsua izan da, «pertsonalizatzea»; izan ere, azkenean, esku-hartze bakoitzaren muturrean, eragin hori jasoko duen pertsona-multzo bat dago, ona edo txarra izan.

Beste gai bat ere jorratu zen: laguntza ekonomikoak. Bi arazo izan ziren horien inguruan. Alde batetik, finantzaketa-ildo desberdinak egotea eta denboran nahiz kudeaketan koordinaziorik ez izatea, eta hori oraindik ere erronka bat da zerbitzuarentzat. Bestalde, jabeen tokitik, dirulaguntzak ordaintzeko unea ez dator bat obrak ordaintzeko epearekin, eta horrek aldez aurretik diru-kopuru garestiak ordaintzea eskatzen du. Beraz, erkidegoei eta, batez ere, pertsona ahulenei finantzaketa-mekanismoak emateko erronka gehitu da.

Zer hobekuntza-proposamen aipatu dira gehien?

Bada alde batera utzi ezin dugun kontu bat: Opengela zerbitzuko langileak (edo subrogazioa) mantentzea, gutxienez birgaitze-obrek irauten duten denboran, errehabilitazioaren ostekoa barne. Obrak egiten ari diren bitartean, bizilagunek bulegoan erreferentziazko pertsona berberak izan beharko lituzketela pentsatu behar dugu; izan ere, zailtasunik handiena, edozein giza prozesutan bezala, eragile guztiek zerbitzuaren «gakotzat» jotzen duten konfiantza sortzea da. Behin konfiantza hori sortuta, zentzugabea litzateke, baldintza administratibo hutsagatik, jarraitutasuna etetea eta bulegoko karguari buruzko erreferentziak aldatzea, zerbitzua desitxuratuko litzatekeelako eta erabiltzaileengan ezinegon handia eragingo lukeelako. Azken batean, administrazio-epe edo -mekanismo guztiak konfiantza hori errespetatzera eta zaintzera egokitzea da kontua, eta hori da, berriz diot, ‘opengelaren’ baliorik preziatuena.

EDE Fundazioak, Opengelako bazkide soziala den aldetik, zer ondorio atera ditu azterlan hau egin zuenetik?

Opengela, publikoa edo publiko-pribatua izan, zerbitzu bat da. Beraz, herritarrei begira ezartzen da, eta, beraz, konfiantza sortzea da haren funtsezko balioa. Izan ere, «leihatila bakartzat» hartzen den arren, areto irekia da –eta hala egiaztatu dugu–, non auzotasuna adieraz daitekeen eta arreta jaso. Arreta-eredu hori ez dator bat erakusmahai klasikoarekin, askotan despatxatu egiten baikaituzte, arazo bat bagina bezala. Opengelak alderantziz jokatzen du: pertsonak konponbidearen ‘arte eta parte’ gisa ulertuz. Horri lotutako beste ezaugarri bat da mahai txiki gisa jokatzen duela, «inklusiokoa» baino gehiago, bai behintzat «arretakoa»; izan ere, eraikinen birgaitzearen eta hiri-berroneratzearen errealitateetan eragiten duten plano eta inpaktu desberdinen jakitun den espazioa da, eta, ondorioz, profil anitzeko zerbitzu baten bidez heltzen die plano horiei.


Europar Batasunak kofinantzatua. Adierazitako ikuspuntuak eta iritziak egileenak baino ez dira, eta ez dituzte nahitaez EBrenak edo CINEArenak islatzen. Europar Batasuna eta finantzaketa-agintaritza ezin dira horien erantzuletzat jo.


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