Author Archives: Maria Calabrese

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No first day of school for Roma children

Early this morning 25 school buses showed up in the Roma villages of Rome to carry children to school. But no one, of the estimated 2.200 children enrolled in schools, could take the bus headed to their desk: there were not mediators and social workers, therefore drivers could not drive them primo giorno scuola romschool.

“It is a paradoxical situation – an Arci Solidarietà mediator says – the Municipality has sent buses, it has even spent money, although children could not use them. We came across surprised drivers, completely unaware about the situation: they thought to work with social workers of schooling projects as every year. Whereas everything is at a stand: we cannot do our job and children are left out.”

After 20 years, the schooling project with Roma people – which manages to support children from Roma communities to schools and in their educational path through compulsory education – has not started.

The schooling project with roma children has been included in a 250 million euro global service tender which involves the maintenance of school buildings and greenery, canteen service and “extraordinary transport” (like the one from roma villages to schools). This tender has been stopped by an appeal of TAR (Lazio Administrative Court) and, while the municipality waived it for essential services to face the upcoming academic year, it had not the same approach with the schooling for Roma children.

As a consequence of “Mafia Capitale” inquiry, services connected to Roma villages are now defined as “attenzionato”(with a special alert), even if no-one of the organizations involved in the schooling of Roma children has been nearly touched by investigations.

There will be a meeting this afternoon between associations and the city councillor for School Marco Rossi Doria who, in a post on Facebook, guaranteed the willing of the Municipality to find a solid solution for the service.

Regional councillor Marta Bonafoni said: “It is hard to think that every service but the one which guarantees the right to education of Roma children started. It is considered a key point by the European Union and the National Inclusion Strategy.

VET4ROMA 30 mediators attended the training

In the first weeks of July, in Rome, it held the first part of the training of the European project VET4ROMA. 30 mediators who work with Roma communities in the city of Rome, particpated to the training oIMG-20150610-WA0002rganized by Arci Solidarietà.

The training topics are the active listen and good communication, the intercultural mediation and the mediation with the Roma communities.

In particular, Italy focuses the training on the current situation about Roma camps and above all on the Schooling Project for Roma children and adolescents, in which the organization has been working for 20 years and in which project work the mayority of social workers trained.