Cooperation and Proximity

During these four weeks, in Ziguinchor I had the opportunity to know a new context of intervention, activities, dynamics and methodologies used to share knowledge with different elements of the Team.

The organisation Futur Au Present has developed in the last years a fundamental work of high quality, with many different young people they involved.

This intervention has allowed them to access a support that will certainly help them to build a better future. While ensuring the most basic living conditions, young people have access to school and support in different subjects, integrated by other activities and a psychosocial intervention by the Team.

During this experience I participated in some visits to the families of the young people supported, both at the Centre and at the Maison de l’Education, where the proximity, the collaboration and the support established with the families was visible and made all the difference.

The approach used went always through awareness and negotiation.
Sometimes it is not necessary to help them to see changes in another way, to give them other perspectives that they often cannot have, using coercive methodologies or imposition, but always adopting, on the contrary, the logic of understanding and empowerment.

When I talked to some of these families and asked them what was different, or what changes occurred to their children, they all answered clearly that since they have been supported by the Institution, their children have improved their school grades, their attitude, and in particular, the interest in the subjects or just the motivation to go to school.

The follow-up achieved from the Educators side helps them to get a better support and to understand the subjects. All families spoke out of their economic difficulties, housing, in having a job or in “bringing food on the table”, but they all stressed the importance of their children’s learning and training to let them have a different future.

When we look into these people’s eyes and see their suffering, we understand their difficulties, but at the same time their ability to keep their children in the educational system and the implications that this decision has on their lives.

This work of monitoring and signaling families goes in cooperation with the closest interlocutors in the neighborhood and community who are aware of the situation and who work with the technicians in order to diagnose and accompany the people and their needs.

In this way, the Futur Au Present has promoted and cooperated in maintaining many young people in the educational system in order to let them having better living conditions in the future.