According to Agenda 21, it is important to “promote” the capacity for expression as an essential dimension of human dignity and social inclusion. Our fight against exclusion is thus a fight for our dignity.
Today in the many projects happening in the Youth sector in Europe, social workers use art as way to prioritize the social and professional integration of our young people. Culture is a tool which can bring about the transformation of an individual’s situation, working with identity, relationships with others, self-esteem and with his or her life projects.
Different professionals meet: important figures in cultural and training, social workers, artists … starting a dialogue, reflection, focusing actions toward evolution and the establishing of young people’s place in society.
How should they collaborate with these young people as they enter society? How are social and cultural components articulated in social actions? What is the potential for culture and for artistic practice in the implementation of these career path projects? What are the institutional and political frameworks for these actions?
With support from Erasmus +, Latitudes Contemporaines, in collaboration with Alefpa, the IRTS (Institut Régional du Travail Social) and its English partners (the Tyne and Wear Museum) and German partners (IMAL-International Munich Art Lab) co-constructed a cycle of reflection seminars throughout 2015: “Artistic Intervention – Research on sustainable concepts of social and professional integration of youth with fewer opportunities.”
The goal is two-fold: training professionals with European trans-sector problems (in both the social and cultural sectors) and developing a common methodology.
It is a way of comparing different points of view, as well as the tools and methods used in each country. In 2016 these actions will be realized through a capitalization phase and the validation of results, using a tri-lingual methodology book and a web platform which may be accessed via this page.
Any interested professional is welcome to use these tools and adapt them to his or her own field.
The project partners organised their research and initiatives around the form of international seminars. They provided working material in the form of example initiatives which they led in their respective cities, with their own partners (often foundations, local authorities and States). They invited professional speakers from institutions and associations to the seminars; a major portion of the seminars was focused on visits to establishments working in the sectors of art, cultural initiatives, inclusion, training youth workers and supporting young people They additionally invited young people themselves to provide testimonies as well as students to offer their perspectives and contribute towards the research. The period covered by these initiatives spanned from 2012 to 2016. The seminar period ran from November 2014 to April 2016.
Latitudes Contemporaines (France)
Latitudes Contemporaines is an association founded in 2003 and strategically focuses its work around productions which support emerging artists and its annual festival which relies heavily on culture and mediation as its driving policy.
Each year, the festival is a highlight of the mediation projects undertaken. Since 2010, Latitudes Contemporaines has developed, along with ALEFPA, a social inclusion and employability project for young people through culture by way of professional placements and artistic workshops held during the festival.
Moreover, the various activities undertaken by the association allow it to coordinate and lead initiatives all year round aimed at raising awareness and being involved in artistic practices, and for all public groups (social structures, high schools, schools, universities, prisons).
Finally, Latitudes Contemporaines is heavily committed at European level thanks to large-scale projects which it coordinates or in which it is involved. Since 2008, Latitudes Contemporaines has been leader of the “Open Latitudes” network which brings together nine European structures around a project which is intended to support creation via a European production fund, as well as the promotion of residencies and dissemination of audacious and innovative projects. Latitudes Contemporaines is also one of the key stakeholders in the European “Now” network through working and reflective workshops on new methods of supporting artistic projects at European level.
Research and initiatives: Its experience and expertise naturally place Latitudes Contemporaines as key partner for the “cultural” dimension for social inclusion projects.
ALEFPA stands for the Secular Association for Education, Training, Protection and Autonomy and is a national public interest association with its head office in Lille and welcomes over 8,000 people into its 118 establishments and services, throughout Mainland France and overseas. These people include children, teenagers and adults (young people between 12 and 21 years old) with disabilities, or major social problems, and in particular children and young people wo are looked after by Social Assistance for Children and Legal Protection. ALEFPA has around 2,000 employees.
In Lille, two establishments are organised in a network – a boarding school and an accommodation service. These establishments are open to young people with social, family and educational difficulties (from 16 to 21 years old), including refugees. This establishment will be particularly involved in the project, even if it is intended to be of use to all services.
Research and initiatives: Reference partner for supporting young people from various backgrounds
Institut Régional du Travail Social (IRTS) (Regional Social Worker Institute)
The IRTS is a professional regional higher education institute which has the dual purpose of promoting and supporting lifelong qualifications for social workers and medico-social workers.
Each year, the IRTS welcomes over 5,000 students across its five training sites. Each site is managed transversally. The IRTS has an Experience and Learning division, and a Research
Division. It adheres to the National Union of Training and Research Associations in Social Working (UNAFORIS) which aims at contributing towards French and European training and educational policies. It develops international placements and projects, undertakes research with trainees in culture and cultural rights, and implements active educational programmes involving young people and resources in the local area, as well as informing people about cultural rights and cultural offers. Finally, it participates in the organisation of a regional biennial conference on culture, as well as in local projects organised by networks involved in social work and culture.
Research and initiatives: Reference partner for research and methodology
International Munich Art Lab (Germany)
The International Munich Art Lab (IMAL) offers a vocational qualification and artistic productions in the visual arts and media sectors as well as performing arts. Since 1996, productions have been performed in close dialogue with artists. Consequently, the young people are actively involved at all stages of production. Classes and workshops take place in small groups and guarantee individual follow up. Company placements also foster practical experience and concrete work on artistic projects.
The young people involved are also led to participate in professional meetings, to develop various tools (for instance a CV). IMAL provides an approach which combines pedagogy and aesthetic methodology, to respond to the challenges observed in the educational background of underprivileged youngsters, in urban settings, and also refugees, who more often than not do not speak German. By combining social work with artistic production, IMAL opens up professional perspectives to young unemployed people. Receiving advice from artists and monitored by social workers, young people are helped in constructing a genuine professional pathway, as well as fostering their social inclusion. IMAL promotes cultural education and creativity as fundamental values of society and personal development.
Research and initiatives: Reference partner for the participation of young people and artistic processes
Tyne and Wear Museum (the UK)
Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums (TWAM) is a major regional museum, which combines a network of nine museums and art galleries as well as an Archive service, managed on behalf of five local authorities in the Tyne and Wear region and Newcastle University. The collections include works of major international importance related to art, science, technology, archaeology, natural sciences, military history, society and fashion. TWAM is funded by the Arts Council England.
TWAM is involved in a host of cultural projects intended for many different public groups, from young people to older members of the population, as well as people with disabilities and social problems. They have developed many pedagogical tools and a methodology based on participative projects. Their main aim is to assist individuals in determining their place in society, helping them to define their identity in respect to themselves and others. Cultural diversity lies at the core of self-development
and integration. The network plays host to 1.6 million visitors per year from a regional population of 1.1 million people!
Research and initiatives: Reference partner for methodologies and assessment
Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums
- European Symposium | November 17, 2016
- Methodological publication