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About us

What is the Borro Neighbourhood Ecumenical Work?

The Borro Neighbourhood Ecumenical Work (“Oebb” for its acronym in Spanish) is a non-profit, social and cultural association, managed by the Pablo de Tarso Foundation, which has been working since 11 July 1978, which is managed by a Board of Directors that is formed with representatives of four Protestant churches: the Evangelical Waldensian Church of the Río de la Plata, the Methodist Church of Uruguay, the United Lutheran Church and the German Evangelical Congregation of Montevideo through the Evangelical Church of the River de la Plata (IERP), which belong to the Federation of Evangelical Churches of Uruguay Since its inception, the Oebb has sought to develop educational, recreational, training and food services, especially aimed at children, adolescents and women who live in the Borro neighbourhood, Casavalle basin, which is one of the most socially, culturally and economically vulnerable areas of Montevideo.

The Oebb is recognized in the neighbourhood, becoming a reference for the nearby community. It has stood out for providing training on different topics that facilitate and promote social inclusion, encouraging support for visiting families. It has focused on strengthening the community organization through actions that tend to expand networking, generating inclusive spaces for social circulation. It has also tried to involve close churches and Christian groups and motivate them for a committed participation in local development.


Our Mission is to guarantee the exercise of the rights of our community, in such a way that it contributes to the construction of full citizenship, in pursuit of social justice.


We start from recognizing the existence of a dehumanizing political and economic system, which produces social and environmental inequality. We are committed to developing educational and political spaces, where people recognize themselves as critical individuals, active players in search for alternatives, promoting autonomy, cooperation, diversity and freedom as principles that guide our practices.

Our location

The Borro Neighbourhood Ecumenical Work is located in the Borro neighbourhood, in the Casavalle basin, in the north of Montevideo. It is one of the areas with the highest levels of poverty in the department, where half of the households have one or more unsatisfied basic needs (according to the National Statistics Institute, 2011). The most significant shortcomings have to do with housing conditions and overcrowding of homes.


The level of education of the population of Casavalle is generally low. Most people have primary education as the highest level achieved. At least one member of the households between the ages of 4 and 17 does not attend a formal educational centre and has not completed secondary education.

The low educational level affects the relationship with the labour market as the less qualified population (due to the logic of the current labour market) is generally the one affected by precariousness, informality and job instability, therefore accessing to low-wage jobs or being directly excluded from the labour market. The fact of living in a poor neighbourhood with a bad "reputation" for having high levels of crime, theft and drug trafficking, becomes a barrier and a depreciating factor for access.


Taking this into account, the neighbourhood where people live acquires relevance as it is the space where primary sociability takes place. In this context, people living in the poorest neighbourhoods are the most affected ones, especially young people, as daily interactions are reduced to people who are part of the same socio-cultural environment. This impoverishes their sociability and becomes a powerful engine for the increase of inequality and for deepening poverty and exclusion.


In 1978, following an evangelical missionary work that started in the late 1950s, the Borro Neighbourhood Ecumenical Work was created. These 43 years working with children, adolescents and the community make the Oebb a place of reference.


If you are interested in our history, you can read more and learn about the process and the transformations that the Oebb has undergone since its inception.

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