La Bodeguita Restaurant    



Left Patricia

Right Cynthia

Every single South American person comes to Elephant and Castle when they first arrive in London. People speak Spanish here, and it’s easy to find contacts: for jobs, for advice, for socialising. I came here three days after I arrived in England from Ecuador. A friend of mine in Camden told me about it.

I live in North London, but I work near to Elephant and Castle and I come here a lot. I am the Chairwoman of the Ecuadorian Community Association. We have around 150 members. We organise open days for different things. We work with lawyers; we run courses for people who want to open a business; we help people access English courses. We are just basically helping people. There are a lot of people who don’t know about their rights, they don’t know how to find a house and a job. It’s just nice to know we can help people.
We’re trying to bring the attention of our young people as well. We want to bring them along, to find out more about Ecuador. There are many teenagers who’ve been born in this country, and they forget.

I feel at home in Elephant and Castle. I can speak Spanish. I can buy any kind of food from home. I think there is lots of life in here.
People are worried about the changes that are happening. They don’t know what to expect, particularly those in the shops by the new tower. There’s a question mark over it. They don’t know if they will be allowed to have a part in it. Where will they go? Everything is around here.
I am actually happy the area is changing. The community has grown a lot. There are lots of kids now. It’s good to see them with a better quality of place and shops. I think it’s important, though, that we have the opportunity to be part of the new Elephant and Castle. People will need help to grow their businesses. I think it could be very good for our community. As long as we aren’t pushed out, as long as we are helped to grow.