Resiliency and creativity. These traits, that often serve as the catalyst for change, are apparent within the halls of the community workshop space, La Goyco. Located in Santurce, Puerto Rico and named after the doctor, journalist, and abolitionist, Pedro G. Goyco. This previously abandoned school was revived by the unwavering support from its neighbors. Now a vibrant cultural center, La Goyco is dedicated to empowering the community through educational programs, cultural workshops, and health initiatives. These initiatives include film viewings, music workshops, dance classes, health screenings, free WiFi, studio spaces, and local events. La Goyco also has a library and bookstore and is home to La Casa de La Plena.
Spearheading the charge for the growth of the space, is Hector “Tito” Matos and his wife, Mariana Reyes. As a musician, Tito Matos has engulfed himself in the history of Puerto Rican music in order to thoughtfully create and honor traditional works of art. This appreciation for historical knowledge and community values is not only evident in the Bomba and Plena music that he performs, it is also visible in his approach with working on La Goyco. Mariana, with her extensive production background and discernment for design, has been instrumental in channeling a warm and welcoming energy into the space. Tito Matos, Mariana Reyes, and many other community leaders, have all collaborated to serve their neighborhood by ensuring that La Goyco remains a cultural hub that aims to support the people of Puerto Rico. Never allowing the logistical hurdles to cloud their vision, the leaders at La Goyco are dedicated to fostering growth and creating educational opportunities for the public.
Written by: Sammy Cuevas
Photography by: Sammy Cuevas