France - An educational matter: "My son does not want to leave the neighborhood"

11 January 2018

(ANS - Nice) - The difficulty of some young people leaving their neighborhood is a real obstacle to their social and professional integration. It has an impact on their ability to take part in local appointments and their opening up to the world of relationships.

by Fr Emmanuel Besnard, SDB

There is a link between the capacity to move about in space and the capacity to move about inside one's own head. The more a young man or woman is able to start, live and experience moving about, geographical mobility, the more they are able to learn and go through life's changes and insecurities. Geographical mobility and internal mobility go hand in hand.

At the Valdocco Center in Nice, educators organize cycling activities by which young people are given material to reflect on their mobility. The metaphor of orientation in a natural space allows children to think about what favors and supports their own orientation in life. Three elements are, thus, elaborated with the young participants: managing the unknown, identifying points of support, constructing meanings.

The trips or outings are organized in places that young people do not know. As Eric Le Breton points out, the incapacity to represent to onself the space towards which one is to go, estimate the time of travel, causes a form of insecurity in young people. "During the Mountain Bike Orientation activities, we try to create a constructive experience in the management of these parameters of space and time. Using a map, a phone number, or by downloading a transport app ... These small tools promote the projection and representations of the young person's future mobility."

The aim is to develop the children's curiosity and their observation of tools: flashlights in the woods, maps, timetables in the city. The educators hold regular stops and stages to take stock of the situation and students must identify the routes taken and the one to take to reach the goal.

Source: Don Bosco Aujourd’hui


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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