A few days ago, the members of the community organization Place of the Sun, from Berazategui, were reunited at their headquarters after months without being there together due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Among the preparations for the place to have the elegance that the event deserved, there was a very particular one: cutting the hair of the mural of Diego Armando Maradona that adorns one of the walls of the headquarters, in memory of an event that had Diez and the Foundation as protagonists.
The hair is a green ivy that simulates the curlers of a young Pelusa and that turns the portrait into a unique mural that requires constant maintenance.
Lugar del Sol was founded by two teachers from Berazategui, Claudia Bernazza and Quique Spinetta. In October 2020, As a gift for 60 years, they decided to pay tribute to Diego, who had visited the foundation a long time ago, at the beginning of the 90s. They say, Maradona came to see the finished mural through images that friends sent him in common.
Diego and Claudia’s visit to the foundation in 1991, when the story began.
“When he was a year old in the middle of the pandemic, we wanted to remember his time at our house with a mural on one of the walls of the court,” says Quique. That step occurred during the summer of 1991. Maradona – suspended from football for a case of doping in the Italian tournament after the 1990 World Cup – visited the place with his then-wife, Claudia Villafañe.
The way Diego arrived at the Lugar del Sol headquarters was also quite curious. It all started that same 1991, shortly before the visit, during a recital of White rat organized by the Municipality of Berazategui. “We went to see it with the adolescents and young people from our homes, since many of them listened to them because they sang to them from their reality and in their own language. Then we greet them and invite them to visit our home and the Casa del Niño Rucalhué (at 369B and 315, in the La Colina neighborhood of Ranelagh “, recalls Spinetta.
“After that visit,” he continues, “they met Diego Maradona in a program of Marcelo tinelli and they invited him to come to see the place. Diego accepted immediately. “
“Hairdressing” for Diego. Maintenance is weekly.
The visit was Diego style. “He challenged us to play a snack on the soccer field of the Casa del Niño. Of course, his arrival revolutionized the neighborhood, and thousands of people came to greet him. Diego came with Claudia, Dalma and Giannina, They were little, they were the age of many of the boys in the boy’s house. He played for a while, it was a lot of fun. He also brought us kitchen utensils and soccer balls. And after a few weeks he gave us some bows and nets. His visit was unforgettable, not only for the boys and girls of our house, but for the entire neighborhood. Many adults still remember their time in the neighborhood today, ”says Quique.
The mural was painted by José Pérez, one of the educators of the child’s house, with the help of Spinetta and the youth of the institution. And they took advantage of a tree to make Diego’s characteristic mane.
“It is a common ivy”, they explain in the foundation. It requires weekly maintenance. “He has his hairdressers. We tell them ‘the hairdressers of D10S’“They joke. In the same way, the mural is cared for by Peréz, who supervises that the air and climate do not wear down the paint that is usually reinforced whenever it is needed.
The mural was painted in October 2020, for the 60 years of the Ten.
“Today, this mural is a must for everyone who visits the house. Everyone wants to take a picture there, especially since Diego passed into eternity. With this, we wanted to express that he is here among us because the boys and the girls of the neighborhoods of Greater Buenos Aires have dreams as beautiful as he had, and the adults must be there, accompanying them ”, affirms Quique, who sees the soccer player as an angel or an “inspiration” for the Chicos del Pueblo organization, which is throughout the country and in each neighborhood trying to build happy lives within the fields, classrooms, and squares.
It was that organization that created Lugar del Sol, with the aim of helping “the most humble children in the Argentine Republic.” The House of the Child Rucalhué is in the district of Berazategui since 1988.
Diego in 1991 at the Foundation. He was a Napoli player and was suspended.
“It is a day center that provides food and community life service in the school shift. Attend more than 300 boys between 2 and 14 years old. During the pandemic, the children and their families were assisted with the preparation and delivery of food, ”explains Quique, adding that throughout the year 500 food items were prepared and delivered daily.
“We would tell Diego that childhood is urgent. Together with him we are working day by day men and women who carry out a silent task in each neighborhood. That in his name, we are next to the boys and girls who need him the most. The children’s houses, the neighborhood clubs, the youth centers and the public programs that accompany these proposals are the best tribute we can do to them. Our houses and fields are the best guarantee so that kids can live a happy childhood every day ”, he concludes.
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