Monday, February 18, 2019
INCLUSIVE YOUTH

Kuie. On January 17th, I met with an intercultural facilitator at the Rochebelle de Ste-Foy School. This young dynamic woman was assisted by a mathematics teacher called Esther. There was nothing out of the ordinary until we met the group they were facilitating. Approximately twenty teenagers, aged 13 to 17, had accepted the invitation to come and meet us (Isabelle Forest and Noémie from Espace Art Nature). Most of those youth were from families of political refugees and all of them were from war-torn regions. Eleven of them were from Syria and others from Africa, Tunisia, Mexico and Moldova.

Since we did not have a specific project, they had to come up with one. The youth were ready to commit themselves to life because they know how precious it is. Two projects were born out of the meeting. The first is a newspaper reporting beautiful and good news, sent out to the largest possible network, and an awareness-raising day at the Rive-Sud (South shore) and Wendake schools. The objective is to create intercultural connections by presenting publicly the different cultures represented within the group and at their transition school.

To build on both ideas, our small team was invited to visit them during Francization Week. The initiative could be scaled up. The youth were so enthusiastic they wanted to keep working on those projects even during the holidays, even the adults. Their last idea was to tap into the talents of anyone who would want to set up a play that would also contribute to bringing about open mindedness. This is only a first step.

Marie Émilie Lacroix Quebec City