About 120 people came to visit the final conference of the PAC project on active citizenship for prisoners. The meeting was at the Parliament of Brussels, a beautiful building in the center of the town. We were looking back on a very nice and successful project with some nice and inspiring results.
Another European project: SIMPLE had the kick off meeting in Malmö, Sweden.
SIMPLE stands for Social Integration of Migrants and activation of Paths for Learning and Employability.
Simple is a internationals project funded by Erasmus+, aiming at people that are victims of human trafficking. The project is focusing on migrant women. The ambition is to explore, adapt and approach a method developed in Italy to work on the trauma these woman have developed. We all work with storytelling and visual narrative.
At De Nieuwe Kans Rotterdam we have been testing our virtual realty game Talk2Me.
Another pilot for the PAC project is almost finished. This time in the prison of Krimpen aan den IJssel, near Rotterdam. At a special section of the prison called “de Compagnie” we worked together with some inmates on creating a magazine. “De Compagnie” is a section of the prison, where the inmates are actively involved in working on their return to society. The central theme of the PAC project was Active Citizenship, the magazine we made introduces and inspires future inmates to the possibilities they have to work on their future in prison.
The first months of 2019 we will be working on the pilots of the PAC (Prisoners Active Citizenship) project, In the Juvenile prison of Lelystad we have linked a group of young inmates to a group of retired people. An exciting combination that is working out very well.
The seniors and the youngsters share their interest and their knowledge. They are currently cooking, painting and making chess pieces together.
The Brixton prison, an old Victorian prison was the décor of 2nd the meeting of the PAC project partners in London. Our hosts took us on a tour to see the prison restaurant, the bakery and their radio project in the prison. Nice and inspiring projects, all of them.
The PAC project is developing really smooth. Everybody is reliable and we are following the original timeline of the project, so far no stress and realistic goals and ambitions in this project.
The second Citizens Lab meeting this year was in Toulouse. It was linked to a meeting of European cultural metropoles. A big spectacle “the Guardian of the temple” was taking place in Toulouse as part of the events. Suddenly we all were VIP’s we were invited to see the spectacle from the best places with the mayor, representatives of the French Government and other VIP’s, all of us as special guests of the city of Toulouse.
We were selected to be present at the kick -off meeting of the Civil Society Cluster of the Bosch Foundation in Berlin. The Bosch Foundation is one of the funders of projects we have been involved in in the past such as the Tandem project.
A small project in Brestovo, Bulgaria. We were invited by our Citizenlab partner Pavlina to participate in a small project “Stepping out of the box”.
In the communist era about 3000 people used to live in the village of Brestovo. After 1990 all young people went to the city. Now only about 90 elder people, most of them woman live in Brestovo. During three days two totally different worlds met, artists mostly from Western Europe and the local citizens. Together we cooked, danced and told each other stories.
In EYE film museum in Amsterdam on June 22 we had the final conference of the Real Life project. About 100 people from different countries were present. Among them people of the top of the Dutch Ministry of Justice and representatives of the Dutch Erasmus+ Agency who funded the project One of the participants called the event “the best conference that I ever visited”.
Later in June we were told that the Real Life project would be presented as a best practice at the Council of Europe.