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Version française / Versione italiana, a site dedicated to the welcome of psychic fragility and urban loneliness in Genena (Switzerland)

The project

Galiffe is an island in the city of Geneva, an improbable green spot on the edge of the railway line; the Galiffe workshop is an unconditional welcome place « for any marginalized person who wishes to spend time with other people ».

This site is the result of a long lasting project (2018-2026) aimed at three objectives: preserving the memory of the place, celebrating both a remarkable professional practice and an institutional option, as well as highlighting some ignored by the social chronicle pecular personalities.

This site is going to evolve according to the publication of new video clips. Comments and suggestions are welcome on the dedicated FaceBook page.


In Geneva (Switzerland), a workshop-garden is nestled at the bottom of a small square along the railway line. Three professional social workers every week day unconditionally welcome a mixed population of urban dwellers suffering from mental difficulties or a feeling of loneliness or “non-compliance”.

Personalities of all ages and origins meet at the Atelier Galiffe, where they find a place to be despite and with their differences.

They are offered manual activities or gardening, or participating in the preparation of a meal or just a warm place to stay without doing anything and still feel part of a caring human group, free from any file or therapeutic contract or obligation whatsoever. The professionals keep the frame, support conversation and social link and listen. The participants look after themselves.

Façade Atelier Galiffe

Protagonists: Galiffe people, ordinary heroes

At the Atelier Galiffe, you can meet a composite audience of marginalized people. They come freewillingly, without obligation whatsoever to register or to open a file. Most of them have an address and are generally known by the social services. Everyone goes about whatever activities they want, or does nothing, depending on the mood of the day. The personalities are original and often endearing. The Atelier provides a containing framework to face their sometimes seriously incapacitating intimate turbulences.

Three professional animators welcome people as they are, every weekday afternoon. They ensure a safe and benevolent environment without writing files or setting therapeutic goals, but with the desire to support self-esteem and consolidation of social link. Two or three volunteers regularly offer some specific activities or walks in town. A professional plastic artist provides painting workshops twice a week.