Bergamasca Community Foundation: Italian courses for Ukrainian children (and lands in the metaverse)

‘DigEducati Ukraine’a project dedicated to cultural dissemination and integration activities for Ukrainian children, hosted in Bergamo, growing and reaching four cities in the province: Treviglio, Clusone, Serious And Zogno.

Born in the wake of the ‘DigEducati’ project of The Foundation of the Bergamasque Societyfunded by Cariplo Funds And Social business with children as part of the Fund for Combating Youth Education Poverty, which aims to reduce the digital divide between children aged 6-13 in fragile conditions in Bergamo Province – the ‘DigEducati Ukraine’ initiative has set itself the goal – in collaboration with theProvincial school office and Cooperative Ruah – to support the integration of Ukrainian children through literacy initiatives and cultural dissemination initiatives.

Started in Boccaleone Community Point – set up at the library in the Bergamo district -, the project extends to other municipalities involving the respective Community Points, to offer the small Ukrainians who host in these areas, the opportunity to access the project’s activities and enter into relationships with other children, facilitating integration with peers.

Literacy courses are underway

From their arrival in Italy until the end of the school year, the girls and boys received in the schools of our province were able to attend reading and writing courses in Italian. However, the end of the school year does not diminish the need to continue with the language learning activity, which is crucial to give children the opportunity to socialize and prepare for the resumption of the school year in September.

The Foundation for the Bergamasca Society addresses this need thanks to the “Aid for Ukraine” Foundation and by responding to the request of the schools in the Bergamo area (including the municipalities of Soisole And Torre Boldone) organized summer courses in literacy, which will be held in the city, but will be open to all girls and boys who are welcome in the provincial municipalities.

The courses, which will initially involve about 75 children between primary and secondary schools, are held in collaboration with Ruah Andelsforening by experienced teachers and cultural communicators. The courses include two appointments per week, at schools that are easily accessible even by public transport.

At the end of the summer, with the start of the new school year, the Italian courses are intensified to prepare the children for the start of school, and then continue throughout the year to follow the learning paths.

‘Digeducati’ lands in the metaverse

Digital education also goes through the experiment with an innovative virtual space, which ‘DigEducati’ has organized by creating a virtual community point on Robloxa digital platform that offers various video games, very popular with children and very young children.

Within the virtual environment, players move through avatars, that is, characters created by the players themselves in the game space of the platform. In a setting that has been developed down to the smallest detail, the player thus experiences different experiences and actions: games, adventures or everyday life, such as shopping, exchanging items, using tools, etc.

In this digital environment, in the new virtual Community Point on Roblox, young players will be able to meet DigEducati educators – also in the form of avatars – who will suggest activities and opportunities for relationships. This allows children to learn secure information and skills for proper use of the Internet.

The project thus takes up the challenge with the meta-verse – a dimension that unites real and virtual – and offers young people an extra training opportunity through the tools they use every day.

To build a useful and necessary relationship between virtual reality and real life, Community Point on Roblox will launch, from June 27, an educational prize game designed to encourage general participation in DigEducati activities: Winners will be invited to pick up their prize at. the nearest Community Point, where they will be able to meet the project operators and touch on the possible activities dedicated to them (to learn more about the ‘DigEducati’ project: www.fondazionebergamo.it/digeducati).

Two days training in Daste

To stay up to date on the latest news in the digital world, the Fondazione della Comunità Bergamasca organizes two days on Monday the 13th and Tuesday the 14th of June from 8.45 to 18, at the Centro Cultural Daste Bergamo (via Daste and Spalenga, 13) training for over 60 operators – educators, librarians, teachers – involved in the ‘DigEducati’ project.

The program includes an in-depth study on Monday morning, June 13, on “Virtual Community Point: Roblox and the metaverse” by the journalist and communicator expert on the subject Gianluigi Bonanomi (from 9 to 11) and on “The Digital Library: MLOL and Madeleines” by Veronica Novali by Bergamo Library Network (from 11 to 13).

In the afternoon, however, the attention is focused (from 14.00 to 18.00) on “Connecting onlife communities. Ideas and considerations that spring from the experience”, with Marco Rondonotti, Teresa Soldini And Gaia Del Negro of methods.

Tuesday the 14th of June opens the day with the meeting “Children and the media prairies. Orientation between consumption of digital content and new languages ​​”, edited by Roberta Franceschetti and Elisa Salamini di Mamamò (from 9 to 10), followed by “Information and Podcasting” by Odemà. THAT

The participants are then divided into groups and participate, the last part of the morning and in the afternoon, in some workshops: “Graphics Lab: take the first steps with graphic design using Canva”, by Alessandra Stevanin by Mamamò, “Video Lab: Taking the First Steps of Video Production Using Filmora”, by Christian Torelli by Mamamò, and a podcasting course by Odemà.

Fundraising for Ukraine continues

Meanwhile, the collection “Aid for Ukraine” continues. Numerous institutions, organizations, industry associations and private companies in the Bergamo area have joined the campaign. The figure reached to date is 1,318,132 euros,

DigEducati could not effectively intercept the new generations if it did not reach them where they are: minors now spend a lot of time online and use web platforms that for them are authentic spaces to meet their peers, and this is a phenomenon that we must take into account – he comments Osvaldo Ranica, President of the Bergamasca Community Foundation -. With the opening of our virtual Community Point, we have decided to take up the challenge, represented by what is now called the meta-verse, to also try to carry out our formative and educational task here, emphasizing the importance of a balance between real and virtual. On the Roblox platform, they will be able to find us, and thanks to this access point, get in touch with competent people who can help them use the technology correctly ”.

To do all this, training is first and foremost necessary: ​​”Because these are complex and constantly evolving issues – continues Ranica – hence the idea of ​​the two days in Daste for DigEducati operators. In the meantime, we keep the attention of Ukrainian children fleeing. from the war, high: The presence of cultural mediators also in the province’s Community Points makes the projects launched by the foundation more widespread and able to reach an increasing number of children.The activation of reading and writing courses also in “During the summer, the intention is to increasingly promote the integration of young refugees into our local communities. The need does not stop; the situation that will arise in September is not predictable at the moment and emphasis must be placed on raising funds.” Aid for Ukraine “: only the generosity of donors – he concludes – will enable us to respond effectively to the needs that arise. Themselves”.

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