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Social integration (Part 2)

The importance of social integration for unaccompanied and separated children on the move (Part 2)
[VOICES IN THE BACKGROUND] [NOISE OF DISHES] This is a project that has integration as a goal. We founded Moltivolti in Palermo, around five years ago as a group of young people - even though I’m not so young anymore - with a group of young people coming from six, seven different countries Senegal, Morocco, Afghanistan Italy, Zambia… At the heart of our project was the idea of putting together different resources, and people coming from different countries. Our goal was to create symmetrical and meaningful relationships between people and groups in the community that are not usually in contact. As you can see where are in the middle of two areas.
The restaurant is behind me, the co-working space is on my right hand side, which is dedicated exclusively to NGOs and associations. To make the co-working space economically sustainable, we decided to open a restaurant. We paired up a non-profit activity, the co-working space, with a profit making activity, which is the restaurant. The restaurant gives us the economic resources that supports the co-working space.
What I can say is that U Report is a recent project. We started around one year and a half, two years ago. I’d say that we started it. We were the very first ambassadors of U-Report. What is it? Why is it useful for young people? It is useful because it involves young migrants living in Italy and abroad. We’re going to talk about what we do in Italy. - In 2017, the child protection office, in collaboration with Team One UNICEF created the U-Report platform. On this platform, young migrants who live alone, can meet and discuss. We also have a Messenger platform where we can share thoughts about our lives, and about our problems. We don’t just focus on problems.
We also talk about positive things, like school, our documents, what we can expect here in Italy. What happens when someone arrived as a child turns 18, what our rights and obligations are going to be. One thing we are really proud of is that we started a conversation about going to school here in Palermo. We succeeded. Since then, all the high schools of Palermo have given migrants the chance to keep studying.
We think that migrants are a resource for society. At present, more than 15 young asylum seekers work at our restaurant. They share their experiences, their traditions. And they contribute to the development of our business model. Moreover, migrants consider MoltiVolti as a space where they can meet and talk about their projects. Inside the co-working space, we have several associations founded by migrants. Not for migrants, but by migrants working for integration. This is a social laboratory. It’s the powerhouse of a new emerging society. This is MoltiVolti. A place where relationships can forge a new society.

In this video you will hear Giovanni Zinna, one of the founders of a social integration project called Moltivolti in the city of Palermo on the Italian island of Sicily.

Moltivolti was opened in 2014 by a group of friends from different cultural, professional, and social experiences from Senegal, Zambia, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, France, Spain, Gambia, and Italy. The space has been developed with the aim of promoting dignity, citizenship, and value from diversity. Translated into English, Moltivolti means ‘many faces’. One of the mottos used by members is ‘Because at Moltivolti, my land is where I lay my feet’ and in the film you will see a map that has been created to represent this.

The space has been specifically designed to offer co-working rooms that can be shared by different NGOs, individual professionals, volunteers, and informal groups who want to develop social, cultural, artistic, or entrepreneurial projects together. Giovanni explains how the restaurant is not only another space where people from different cultures and backgrounds can meet and socially interact, but is also a profit making business that helps subsidise the co-working space and other activities.

As an illustration of groups that can utilise space at Moltivolti, we hear from Bassirou and Ibrahim. They are members of a UNICEF supported project called U-Report. In the video they explain how U-Report is a platform designed for young migrants living in Italy through which they can share information such as how to access services, understand legal processes, and participate in social activities. They also use the platform to exchange ideas and advocate for change.

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Caring for Children Moving Alone: Protecting Unaccompanied and Separated Children

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