Production of banners for an event about antiracism
We have taken up the request to work with young people by listening to their suggestions. This 3 activity arises from this. Making a banner with tempera paints for the demonstration called by the Nigerian community after the murder of a trader of African descent by a white man in the Marche area. The youth spoke about the incident and asked that the next activity be used to meet and create the banner. There was an initial moment of confrontation and discussion about the choice of phrase and design they wanted to make, and then there was the moment of execution. The target group involved in the project consists of vulnerable young people from different backgrounds, mainly from Africa. It was beautiful and emotional to experience the first moment of exchange where they told each other about racist incidents that are both known in history and happened to them.
It is important to organise moments of confrontation. Organising writing or art workshops where participants work together with the help of volunteers and facilitators helps the group to get to know each other, respect each other’s ideas, feel less alone and prevent anger or pain from staying within them and leading to negative attitudes. Creating a safe space where they can express themselves and grow together, using different tools such as group workshops or sports under the guidance of an experienced and trusted person, is what children who often live on the streets and are bored need to be at their best.
SPORTS: BASKETBALL AND SOCCER FOR SOCIAL INCLUSION, ANGER MANAGEMENT AND PROMOTION OF RULES
Sporting activities were used as the main tool to promote social inclusion, anger management, respect for diversity (special focus on gender and cultural diversity) and respect for rules.
The sports activities were aimed at the target group of young people, but also at other groups such as women, refugees and children. Specific sessions were developed to promote inclusion through sport, because it is not enough to give a ball (in this case basketball or football) for things to work well.
The sports sessions included rules chosen by the participants themselves. Here are some examples of rules that were used to make sports activities inclusive:
-3 Passes are compulsory so that more people can play;
-Reduction of contrasts (when playing with children);
-For mixed teams, one pass is compulsory for a female athlete, for mixed age teams it is the same,
-Select your team players based on who answers intercultural questions first (Who is the captain of the Italian women’s national team? A football player of Nigerian descent? Who won the 2022 African Cup of Nations?…);
-Commitment of the team to rejoice together when a point is scored;
-Awarding points at the end of the activity for fair play;
-Promoting pep talks among the athletes;
-Stop play when conflict arises and arrange a time for discussion;
-Change the rules if they are not working, if you see bored and unhappy athletes, without being afraid to stop the game and ask, “Is everything okay?”
Introducing new rules, monitoring sessions and sporting activities allows for real integration and creates positive moments. The volunteer part is very important to lead the activities, encouraging the active participation and engagement of the children.