Name: Deco

  • Date of Birth: 11 February 2022
  • Place of Birth: Dolphins Barn, Dublin 8.
  • Makers: Boys Club  – Rialto Youth Project
  • Credit: Deco was born from a programme led by Rialto Youth Project youth workers Dannielle McKenna and Karen Cronin, alongside Artist and Filmmaker David McGovern and Artist Aaron Sunderland Carey.

the Pamphlet here!

Drawings by Aaron Sunderland Carey.

There’s Deco, 12 years old black curly hair and brown skin. Welcome to life next to Tesco. We are here to show you around, show you the places to hang out, where to get your food and everything that has been blocked up and locked up in the last few years.

It’s boring here now with nowhere to play. What’s it like where you are from? Your Mam is Irish and your Dad is from Africa, with family all over the world, even from Germany! Have they any connection to World War 2 and do they know of Hitler and everything that happened him. He was treated badly growing up, we wonder if he was treated better would things have turned out differently.

But Deco you’re here now in Dolphin House – you, your Mam and your sister. Your Dad went to get the milk and never came back and now you only talk to him on the phone, but your Mam isn’t happy about that and you try and ask her, ‘Why do you not like me Da? ‘Why won’t you talk about it?’ I hope your Nanny is ok, your Dad over looking after her. At least now they can’t do the devils tango and make a baby. Then there’s your younger sister Zion, she has had a lot going on and has been sick and finds it hard to concentrate. Maybe she has ADHD but you always play Mario Kart with her when she’s sick and get yourselves Lucozade, Squishes, Doritos and Hash Browns. All from a fiver from your Ma.

I like your clothes – Nike tech fleece, a Canada Goose body warmer and those Nike runners! Nice. Where did you get them? Your uncle, is he a dealer? He gave you that envelope full of cash for your birthday and said it was from tax back, but he’s not even working. I’d say he lives in Ballyer, or could be Finglas or Fatima. All you can smell is weed. No-one in posh areas sell drugs. We are used to the smell of weed in the barn.

Sometimes it’s hard here, not always safe in the community and you see things. We’ve seen things, like people selling drugs outside the Maxol and people being chased who owe money, and screaming matches. We always watch people drug deal, cause if they don’t have enough money there is a scrap. I’ve even seen syringes in the sand pitch.

We have also seen things online, violent videos and porn. I heard about you getting added to the group chat and someone you didn’t know sending that video. It makes you feel sick, you can’t eat your dinner and feel like vomiting. That’s why you need us – friends and someone to comfort you, good friends. We will be here to tell you it’s ok. You need to stop, block and tell.

We understand that it might not be easy for you here to grow up and that 100% you will grow up with racism. I once gave someone a dig over saying the N word.

I heard you have your first bird Deco and your first meet. But don’t worry we know it’s a lot of pressure especially if you’re not sure if you like boys or girls. We don’t think that guy you might like is homophobic.

I know it’s been hard to talk about things, and hear you have been vaping and hiding it in your room. We will help you through that and show you the best places to go. We need to get you a bike, to go to Sundrive for some football.

Drawings by Aaron Sunderland Carey.

Photos of the process by the project team.