Associazione Cultirale Pitagora (ACP) is an organization composed of High Schools teacher employed in the secondary education school “Scuola Paritaria Pitagora” in Sassari.
The organization works in the field of educational support and mentoring of young adults with educational difficulties aged 18+. The young Adults the organization’s staff work with are often characterized by disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds (NEETs, youngsters from poor urban suburbs and deprived rural areas in North Sardinia) as well as suffer from educational difficulties (poor record of educational attainment). These young Adults are no longer involved in the formal circuit of education (school leavers) and are supported by the organization by means of educational assistance and mentoring with a view to facilitating their reintegration in the school system.
The specific organizational gap identified by the applicant is contextual to the unsatisfactory turnout in terms of educational involvement and retention of its audience of targets, emerging in the phase of evaluation of the results achieved in the applicant’s activities. The main reason underneath the identified uderperformance was the limited ability to establish an educational connection with the targets overcoming their peculiar educational constraints as well as of keeping them involved in a long-term perspective through the use of participatory educational approaches.
ACP has initiated a process of regular participation in the opportunities of mobility and non formal learning guaranteed by the Erasmus Plus programme with a view to expanding its backpack of methodologies in the field of education through the acquisition of new methodologies grounded on the principles and approaches of Non Formal Education (NFE) as methods to maximize the involvement of its audience as well as the educational output of its activities by means of enacting a mutually reinforcing synergy between the formal and non formal educational approaches.
The priority of ACP in this context pertains to both acquiring an enhanced understanding of NFE methods and developing a set of connections with established European organizations in possession of specific expertise in the field of innovative instruments of non formal learning, with a threefold objective:
- Fostering the development of the capacities and operational variety of its staff of experienced educators, with a focus on Non Formal Education.
- Establishing regular, long-term partnerships for the exchange ofknowledge and good practices aswell as the presentation of joint initiatives, thus extending the scope and outreach of ACP’s initiatives. 3. Acquisition of competences of project design and management in the field of specific interest of the organization within the Erasmus Plus programme, related to the educational support to the educational integration and, thereby to the social inclusion and employability of young Adults suffering from educational difficulties.
Through the present project, ACP aims at delivering on the recalled priorities through developing the competences of its experienced staff in the use of NFE methodologies as instruments of inclusive educational support, as well as in the employment of the innovative method of Storytelling as a tool of enhancing reflection and ownership of the learning process by learners. Storytelling (whose scope includes also Digital Storytelling, that is, the application of Storytelling to digital and media instruments) is an ever increasingly employed unconventional methodology of support to the learning process using the immediateness of narratives as an instrument for facilitating the transmission of even complex sets of knowledge and competences to learners, at the same time favouring reflection, critical thinking and communication of knowledge through the use of the causeeffect structure characterizing narratives.
The specific steps whereby the project envisages to deliver on the development needs of the organization are the following:
1- Mobility of 5 trainers from ACP to Bulgaria, in the premises of the organization Champions Factory, for attending a Training Course on the use of Non Formal Education as a tool for fostering the acquisition of soft skills and transversal skills by disadvantaged young Adults.
2- Mobility of 5 Trainers from ACP to Germany, in the premises of the organization Comparative Research Network to attend a Training Course on the use of Storytelling as an instrument of support to learning, reflection and communication of knowledge.
3- Job Shadowing involving 2 members of ACP staff in the premises of the German partner CRN, focused on ecxhanging knowledge and good practices