About La Foresta – a short text orginially written for a book on Urban Commons edited by the Urban Commons Research Group at Sheffield University
La Foresta is a ‘community academy’ that is located in the train station of Rovereto in the valley of Vallagarina. The project was collectively founded in 2017, motivated by the desire to create a space where different cultures and the various civic actors in the area could come together to learn from each other both in theory and practice in order to explore emerging commons and community economies together. As such, the space and project provide an ‘infrastructure’ for emergent commoning practices on the one hand and an avenue to shape concrete demands and practices for the territory as a commons on the other.
The name ‘La Foresta’ means ‘forest’, a metaphor that hints at a complex ecosystem which recognises and values both the visible and invisible doings that comprise and sustain it. ‘La Foresta’ also means “the female one coming from outside” in local dialect, which symbolically helps the group to embrace newcomers and new ideas from different places and domains which, through their interaction, weaves an important basis for the actions that take place and, therefore, to center those who are most vulnerable in our society. La Foresta consists of a diverse mix of people coming from all sorts of fields and backgrounds, with a predominance of locals coming from all across Italy, but also Germany, Spain, and Brazil. You become part of La Foresta by simply coming along to their activities. When you want to join all the decision making processes you can participate in the weekly public assembly, where all issues of future development are discussed.