How to be part of Palermo

From the noisy fresh-fruits and vegetable markets of Ballarò, the journey started from a training for the job-shadowing program. I was very much excited and eager to participate and screen the education process in Palermo and I could not wait any longer.

We spent the first week visiting the organizations working with education promotion against early school leaving. The association linked to Santa Chiara Church in Palermo has school children for the day-time care doing their homework assisted by local volunteers; another place was an education center called REACT in a sidelined part of the city, where they try to help drop out teenagers join the school. I could observe that the teenagers in REACT center were more mature despite their young age, a sign of their hard life.

The second and the third weeks I did some cultural exchange activity with the children in Santa Chiara, that helped me understand their process of education. The children were eager to know about my country and my language and despite the language barriers, we organized some interesting activities together. With the teenagers in REACT center, we organized the English learning classes at Per Esempio association headquarter. The teenagers were hard to bond with and their interest was well earned as they became more eager to learn and speak English.

I could learn a lot about patience, expectations and the virtual-real situations we create in our mind during this experience. When one asked Come stai? (How are you?) and I replied Good Morning on a clear sunny afternoon, I could feel myself enthusiastic to adjust to the life and with the people I worked with. I also worked with the mothers attending Laboratorio Zen Insieme, where I could see a lot of problems of schooling in Palermo. I could see that the parents not engage themselves in the Parents meeting conducted by the schools and I could hear they care less about their children. It was disappointed watching the parents’ lack of motivation in caring about their children. With the mothers, I was able to organize a Nepali-cooking class where I cooked Mo:Mo. Their participation in the event was very satisfying to me as I could feel much more trust and friendly environment despite the language barriers.

I was also able “to be part of Palermo” for other than education issues, as I volunteered during 3 days for Ballarò Buskers festival, presented my country’s culture and traditions in the Arte Migrante event and participated in an open Tango class with my friends. My thanks and lots of love to everybody who assisted me to achieve a remarkable journey full of surprises, motivations and lot of productivity.

 

Abinash, Nepal

Job shadowing in Italy