Subject: Information about the TUg social center, permaculture garden, events, activities and campaign
Description:Introduction: The ‘Tug’ is a building on the Tugelaweg in the Transvaalbuurt of Amsterdam, and a large group of housing activists, info and media-activists, artists, architects, environmentalists, gardeners, ‘master cooks’, dreamers and enthusiasts. It began with a struggle to legalize the old ‘Joes Garage’, a squatted social center and political info café on Pretoriousstraat 28 and the Steve Bikoplein squat some three years ago. The process since its inception has generated many interesting and exciting social initiatives and alternatives. Such as the housing union SoWeTo, a new sustainable business model for collective housing, plans for a new social center with cinema, peoples kitchen, podium and info cafe, a renovation scheme for Urban sustainability and hopes and schemes for an Urban permaculture food garden and education center. Since the criminalization of squatting in the Netherlands on the 1st of October 2010, many social centers, community initiatives, info cafés, spontaneous, non commercial and non- subsidized cultural initiatives, transition towns initiatives, groups living together under fairer economic solidarity models, alternative lifestyles, political views, and communities are under threat. Appearing also to be criminalized and persecuted under this extreme and unjust law. That in shocking neo-liberal fashion attempts to knock back nearly fifty years of housing and civil rights struggle in the Netherlands that had found its home in self run, free places generated by the ability to, and the social agreement to, make use of what wasn’t in use. The ‘Tug’ is part of the movement to prevent the destruction of these community initiatives from happening by facilitating and providing a small part of the much needed non-commercial space. Alongside this the Tug wants to provide a new model economically, ecologically, socially and culturally for Urban sustainability, urban food production and collective housing, while proudly launching the first project of housing union SoWeTo. Forging in this way a future of hope and demonstrating and educating about viable alternatives to the current unsustainable urban reality. However, unfortunately, the struggle, for the Tug is not yet won. The building on the Tugelaweg was promised to SoWeTo by the city council but the deal is not yet sealed. We need to apply political pressure and show our collective will. But most importantly we need you and your friends to be involved, to bring your ideas and initiatives, to find a place of refuge for your dreams in the Tug project.