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31/3/2014 - Italy - The Oratory as a school for life

(ANS – Rome)– Thursday till Sunday, 13-16 March 2014, the network of Don Bosco Youth-Net gathered in Rome for a seminar on “the Oratory as school for life”.  Twenty-four young people gathered in the “Istituto Salesiano Sacro Cuore” to share experiences and learn about the educational style of Don Bosco in the Oratory and link this with Europe’s 2020 strategy for inclusive growth.

The main aim of the seminar was to identify ways in which non-formal youth work can contribute in reducing the number of young people at risk dropping out of school, or facilitating them to re-enter. Participants from twelve countries took part. The first day started in the evening with an introduction of the programme. On Friday 14 March, the participants got to know the Europe 2020 goals, focussing especially on ‘inclusive growth through education’. They explored the use of the Oratory model as a non-formal model for participation and social inclusion. In the afternoon the participants of the seminar went on a study visit to Borgo Ragazzi, an oratory catering for young people at risk: school dropouts, drug abuse, immigrants, Roma, special youth care, homeless young people, young people in foster care. ...

The next day, 15 March 2014, the participants started examining the needs. They analysed the differences between the good-practices in the Oratory’s all over the EU and looked at needs in the respective countries. First two guest speakers of PGS-I and GEX joined the group. Georg Leibold from PGS-I explained how he uses sports as a tool for inclusion and education. Angel Gudiña told us more about GEX and brought in a critical view on the good practices presented: GEX is the global network of young past-pupils of Don Bosco schools.

In the afternoon the participants gathered to work on future projects in the exchange market. The goal of this session was to set up future partnerships. The participants came together for Holy Mass, and then there was the intercultural evening, where participants got to make a new culture and present their own countries. On the 16th of May before noon, the participants worked on evaluation of the seminar and how to spread its message.

During the seminar, there was also the meeting of DBYN’s General Executive Body (G.E.B.), who elected the new president, Francesco Bagiolini for a term from 2014 –2017.

During the exchange market, members of the G.E.B. and participants from the seminar worked together. After the exchange market, some Salesian provincials came to visit the participants of the seminar and the members of the G.E.B. They were introduced to the new president, brought up-to-speed about the new Erasmus+ programme, got a look back at the development of the network between 2008 and 2013 and made links between the Salesian provinces and the member organisations of DBYN.

This seminar was organised by DBYN ivzw, hosted by Federazione SCS/CNOS and funded by the EU’s Youth in Action programme.

Published 31/03/2014

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