Associazione Malik

In Sant’Andrea Frius, the European youth exchange “TIME – Time to stay, time to learn” took place.

Young people from rural areas of Europe discussed the issue of school dropout

From May 31 to June 7, 2024, in the municipality of Sant’Andrea Frius, 30 young people from Sardinia and Europe (coming from Greece, Portugal, Spain, and Slovakia) participated in the youth exchange “TIME – Time to stay, time to learn”. This project was organized by the association Malik E.T.S., funded by the European Erasmus Plus program and the Autonomous Region of Sardinia’s Department of Education, Cultural Heritage, Information, Entertainment, and Sports, and co-funded by the Municipality of Sant’Andrea Frius.

The specific goal of the project was to raise awareness among young people, youth workers, teachers, and families from the participating countries about the importance and benefits of learning, education, cooperation between youth organizations and schools, and the use of non-formal methodologies. The overall objective was to mitigate the issue of school dropout, which is particularly significant in Mediterranean countries.

There were numerous meetings: at the lower secondary school in Sant’Andrea Frius, the Erasmus youth and the school’s students addressed the issue of school dropout and collectively prepared a panel, which was donated to the school. Starting from the slogan of our awareness campaign “Should I stay or should I go?” each participant wrote a message of encouragement in Italian or English for their peers who are considering leaving school.

Our participants also conceived and created a video, a dance performance, a collage, a landing page, and a podcast as part of the awareness campaign against school dropout. These were presented to the community during the project’s final event.

The group’s knowledge of the territory and the host community was furthered through participation in the “ecological walk” organized by the Pro Loco “FRIAS.” This allowed participants to interact with local citizens, who acted as ambassadors for their municipality by showcasing the natural beauties of the area.

The group was also hosted by a local business that embodies the spirit of our project: we met Maria Atzeni, the founder of the agricultural company Pab’è is tèllasa, who shared her story with us. She recounted her journey from dropping out of school to deciding to resume her studies at the age of 50, successfully obtaining her diploma.

The issue of school dropout was also addressed from an emotional and psychological perspective, thanks to psychologist Francesca Murgia, who conducted a workshop focused on social skills and emotional abilities. Additionally, the topic was explored from a graphic and statistical standpoint through the analysis of responses to questionnaires administered to young people in their respective countries before the start of the project, and the creation of explanatory infographics.

The project also provided an opportunity for young foreigners to discover some of Sardinia’s most significant archaeological and natural sites, such as the Pranu Mutteddu archaeological area in Goni, the holly-well temple of Funtana Coberta in Ballao, and the DOSA center (Documentation and Studies on the Waters of Flumendosa).

All activities were carried out following the principles and methodologies of non-formal education.

There was also in-depth exploration of European programs dedicated to young people and their participation methods, as well as the creation of awareness initiatives to encourage youth participation in European elections and to emphasize how every citizen can make a difference with their vote.

The enjoyment was not lacking thanks to multicultural evenings featuring music, dances, and typical dishes from the involved nations.

At the conclusion of the project, all participants received a Youthpass certificate, which verifies and describes the skills acquired during the exchange.

The successful implementation of the project was made possible by those who contributed to organizing local activities (such as the Municipality of Sant’Andrea Frius, the Lower Secondary School of Sant’Andrea Frius, Pro Loco “Frias”, Centro Dosa Ballao, Pranu Mutteddu Archaeological Area in Goni, and Pab’è is tèllasa agricultural company) as well as our foreign partners (EUphoria – Greece, Novo Mundo – Portugal, Adel – Slovakia, Illipula Youth Association – Spain).

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