The project was conceived from Ile Osha Oni Shango Obba Bi Loyu in 2009 with investigative actions towards Cuban religions of African origin, for the self-interest of its members, who were initiates or believers from different Temple Houses of Matanzas and Cárdenas.
Its name: AfroAtenAs comes from: the word Afro, for being Matanzas considered as “the Ilé-Ifé, the lucumí Rome of Cuba”, an area where, according to the great Cuban ethnologist Lydia Cabrera, the oldest and most important santeros continue to conserve these ancestral religious traditions as “the purest legacy of Africa” and Athens, for this project being inserted in the city of Matanzas, the Athens of Cuba, thus proclaimed on February 17, 1860 due to the great splendor reached in this century the which could be compared to that of the Greek city.
AfroAtenAs is DEFINED today as a project of CULTURAL INTERVENTION for DEVELOPMENT, DYNAMIZER of the COMMUNITY, in which anthropological perspectives and fields are integrated, action participation research, group work, mainstreaming and gender focus, systematic work of diagnosis, evaluation and action towards the gradual elimination of social gaps and inequities, NON-VIOLENCE, NON-DISCRIMATION, among other elements that are part of the applied methodological conception that makes the existence of said project feasible according to other references such as cultural policy of the MINCULT or the Strategic Plan of the CNCC 2016 – 2024.
Contribute through community work in its participatory approach to the cultural, social and economic development of the Pueblo Nuevo neighborhood with the strengthening of the identity values of the city of Matanzas, integrating voices and actions in social activism for diversity and happiness. through dialogue, intervention and urban sociocultural transformation with a perspective of gender equality, which would favor reaching levels of progress in: revitalization of the Popular Council, traditional popular culture, endogenous development, the environment and new economic and productive forms, rights and democracy, sources of employment, heritage – art and identity, NO gender violence and NO discrimination, human empowerment and capacity building, strengthening of LGTBIQ + groups, media – promotion, audiovisuals and ICT.
- Transformative actions in communities that respond to demands and gaps of local equity from culture as a process of social transformation.
- Training and education of active citizenship in vulnerable groups.
- Attention to violence, training of actors and citizens for a culture of peace, DISCRIMINATION AND ZERO VIOLENCE.
- Generation of opportunities and capacities for the care of people with Intellectual Disabilities.
- Identify new local actors, participatory spaces and community initiatives for sustainable local development and the economic and social empowerment of the inhabitants in vulnerable areas from the Environment, Heritage and Local Popular and Traditional Culture.
- Social activism in LGBTIQ + citizenship in favor of claiming all rights for all people in a more just and equitable society.
- Methodological support to Municipal Governments, projects and institutions on issues of equity and participation.
Yoelkis Torres Tápanes. General Coordinator of the AfroAtenAs Sociocultural Integration, Intervention and Transformation Project. Degree in Economics from the University of Matanzas Camilo Cienfuegos. Anthropology and Heritage Specialist from the Catholic University of San Antonio de Murcia. Master in Historical and Anthropological Studies from the University of Cienfuegos Carlos Rafael Rodríguez. Trained as a Project Manager at CIERIC. Director of the Center for Cultural Management for Development Villanueva. Professor of the Department of Sociocultural Studies of the University of Matanzas Camilo Cienfuegos. CCRD-C Project Advisor. Provincial Coordinator of the MSM Network – PPST Matanzas. Provincial Coordinator of the Community Network Humanity x Diversity of Cenesex
Magela Quintero Pérez. Manager. Graduated from Elementary Level of Basic Piano. Middle Technician in Economics. 1st Level Figurative Dancer and Reggissel of 3rd Level Musical Shows
Yarima Tejera. Manager. Theater Art Instructor. Graduated in Psychology from the University of Matanzas Camilo Cienfuegos. Self-employed woman
Jenniffer Dueñas. Manager and Voluntary Social Activist of the TransCUBA Network
Luis Bran Acevedo. General Coordinator of the Audiovisual Community Experience: The Warehouse. Music Teacher, Study National School of Art in Havana and University of Calgary Alberta Canada and main accompanist of the dance faculty of this university. Omo aña (godfather Esteban Vega Bacallao –Chacha). Computer science and art production student in San Francisco California where for 8 years he was an assistant producer and technician for Theater on the Square, post Streer Theater marines Memorial Theater. Musician, designer and Foley artist for movies with Skywalker Sound in Marin County California. Member of the registry of the Audiovisual and Cinematographic Creator of the MINCULT / ICAIC. Member of IATSE – International Alliance of Theater Employees, film technicians, artists and related trades in the United States, its territories and Canada.
Yadiel Cepero Madruga: Engineer in Computer Sciences, from the University of Computer Sciences (UCI). Trained as a promoter of sexual health and rights (2012) in the Youth Network for Sexual Health and Rights, which is accompanied by the National Center for Sexual Education (Cenesex). Founder at the University of Computer Sciences of the sociocultural project “Love at second sight” (2012), being its coordinator until January 2015. Participant in national workshops of the Youth Network for Sexual Health and Rights (2013, 2014 and 2015). Speaker at Scientific Workshop: Young people can change the world (2013), developed at the Union of Jurists of Cuba. Delegate for the Youth Network for Sexual Health and Rights, at the 6th Regional Conference of the International Association of Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Trans and Intersex for Latin America and the Caribbean (ILGALAC), Cuba (2014). Panelist in the Panel “The Cuban LGBTI movement: a view from its protagonists”, organized by the Diversity Section of the Cuban Multidisciplinary Society for the Study of Sexuality (SOCUMES), at the Casa del ALBA Cultural (2014). Participant in InCUBAr II Workshop. Second Basic Workshop on Social Networks (2014). Member of the MALATESTA Cultural Project (2014-2017). Scriptwriter and announcer for the radio magazine Muévete, in charge of the section Let’s talk about sexuality, University of Computer Sciences ( 2015-2016). Gold Prize and Bronze Prize in visual arts, National Festival of Amateur Artists of the FEU (2016), for works with social themes. Founder of the Youth Articulation of the Oscar Arnulfo Romero Center (2016). Participant in colloquium “You are more than obey”, convened by the Oscar Arnulfo Romero Center and the Cuban Multidisciplinary Society for the Study of Sexuality (2016). Participant in Panel “Current challenges in the fight against Violence against Women and Girls ”(2017). Rapporteur of the National Meeting of Researchers “Promote Gender Equality by eliminating Violence against Women and Girls” (2017). Founder and administrator of the Facebook group Building an agenda for sexual diversity in Cuba (from 2017 to date). Member of the Management Group of the AfroAtenAs Sociocultural Integration, Intervention and Transformation Project (from 2019 to date).
Adiel González Maimó: Graduate in English and German Language, from the University of Matanzas Camilo Cienfuegos. Theology student at the Evangelical Theology Seminary. Trained as an LGBT activist in the basic course of the Humanity for Diversity Network (HxD) in Matanzas. Founder of the Church We are Church of the Metropolitan Community in Cuba (ICM).
José Manuel Piqué Zamora (also known as Sara de Cuba or Salomé Montiel): Pioneer of transformism in Matanzas. Activist of the Trans Cuba Matanzas Network. His artistic career includes presentations from the age of 16 in private parties and recreational centers, including: the Casa de las Tías (Old Havana), Casa de Rogelio Conde (Vedado, Havana), Autumn Winter Festival (Párraga, Havana), El Periquitón (Old Havana), Casona La Yagruma (Güira de Melena, Mayabeque), VityGay (Matanzas), Festival of Beauty (Cine Atenas, Matanzas) and Las Ruinas (Matanzas). Special guest at the Gala against Homophobia and Transphobia (Matanzas).