FIT – fascinating ict tools for people with disabilities – project mobility to Foligno, Italy, 25th-29th of March

In the beginning of April the partner organization from Italy “Viaindustriae” organized the 4th mobility in terms of the FIT project. The mobility took place in Foligno, Italy, at the “center of the world”. According to the ancient tradition, Foligno was the center of Italian peninsula and in turn the heart of Europe and Mediterranean area which historically was considered the center of the world. In the past decades this “lu centru de lu munu” (“the center of the world” in fulginate)  was identified with a red pin on the central pool table at the historical “Caffè Sassovivo”. This cafe is no longer there, but with municipalities resolution as of 29th of May 2008 the “Center of the World” is the “trivium” at the intersection of Corso Cavour and Via Mazzini, which is the most central point of historic center.

Foligno is not overcrowded by tourists, so manages to keep real, authentic feeling of Italy. This is also a perfect place for the ones who do not want to compromise the peace of mind to overcrowded and chaotic Rome, but at the same time not to be too far away from the capital full of cultural and artistic activities. Foligno is only two hours driving away from Rome. In Foligno there are more than hundred church buildings, of course not all of them are still in use for religious ceremonies and are in fact empty giving a chance for young and experimental artists to take over those places for different events and performances.

The mobility programme was intense, full of interesting visits, excursions, cultural activities and exchanges.

Day I: Welcoming, informative visits, work on the project activities and “recording the reality”
First day started with a visit to the school “Istituto Technico Commerciale di Stato – Feliciano Scarpellin” using integrated method, presentation about the school was given by both students and teachers. After presentation we had also a possibility to visit also the actual classes and discuss with the teachers how the issue is tackled in the project partners countries. The day continued with a welcome from the Foligno municipality representative at the municipality building. Building itself looked almost like a museum – the main halls were covered with sealing and wall paintings. Each of the partners received generous welcome souvenirs – a copy of the first page of Dante’s “Divine Comedy” and the coat of arms of Foligno.

For the second half of the day the whole mobility group divided into two parts where one became part of the “Diversamente Facile” magazine’s editorial staff and explored the town of Foligno “recording the reality”. Different methods were used to record the reality – taking pictures, making videos, writing notes or any other medium to document the visit. The second group had a presentation given by Anka introducing different methods on how to create Digital Interactive Films as method of therapy and education of persons with intellectual disability [Download PDF presentation – Digital Interactive Films]. Then a presentation on the most recent changes in the project portal disfit.eu and the integrated point-and-click method tool for videos were given.

After the dinner we attended a contemporary public and collective performance “Dalla materia oscura” (“From Dark Matter”) of artist Myriam Laplante. This performance was part of the performing arts festival in the ex-church Santa Caterina. During this performance the artist conceived a specific fascinating light room (taking inspiration from the FIT project activities and topics – the artist also participated in the mobility visit to Ruse Bulgaria) and in which the audience would enter and see/feel lights, sounds and words creating a world to collectively experience.

Day II: Visit to social co-op Ellelle, Viaindustriae office, work on the project activities

The next day started with a visit to a social cooperative “Ellelle” founded in 1992 by parents of children with disabilities and young professionals driven to provide to their children and relatives in similar situation services beyond the ones provided by public bodies. The center started its activities in 1996 for spending afternoon leisure time for people with mental and physical disabilities. The center continuously works on different projects to improve and extend their services. The magazine “Diversamente Facile” is an initiative of one of the parents from this cooperative – Silvia Giuli – her son Lorenzo Cascelli is part of the editorial staff. The magazine is a collaborative project with “Viaindustriae“. Silvia and Lorenzo are also active participants of FIT project. “Ellelle” organized a very warm welcome with different collaborative activities, short excursion around the center facilities, little crafted souvenirs and also very tasty self-cooked snacks for tea and coffee. For the lunch we were invited to the self-service restaurant where works Lorenzo.

The second part of the day started with a visit to “Viaindustriae” office. Emanuele, Alice and Simonetta introduced different projects they were working on related to public spaces, social architecture, and “recording the reality” such as “Ragnatele 9 – Umbria Underground” – a public illumination magazine -, and “Public computing” – an offline manual on art domain. We also got a sneak peek at the lab/showcase/workshop living space of Viaindustriae that was created in collaboration with the French social architect who is also living there.

The work continued again as during previous day – one part of the group proceeded with the “recording the reality” activities that involved also visit to the exhibition “Calamita Cosmica” by Gino de Dominicis at CIAC – a gigantic 28 m long and 8 tons heavy skeleton with a pointy nose and a ‘golden’ pencil on his finger top.

Second part of the group had a discussion about the scenarios for the sexual education flash online games. But unfortunately we were not able to reach a definite, common approach due to several reasons. Firstly, there are age differences of our “students” (from primary school to adult age) – what is good enough for adults might not be acceptable for children. We also identified different approaches and perceptions on sexual behaving – the project partners are from very different and diverse environments and it is complicated to find a common approach that would fit all. We do not think though that this time was wasted – there was a chance to discuss this topic with the students and also to see that the problem exists, furthermore it is worth to develop and lead a separate project just on this topic – sexual education for people with disabilities.

After long discussions and “recording the reality” activities we re-united all again for the dinner at the restaurant that was established in the ex-cinema building which was convenient place since part of the dinner was also presentation on educational movies prepared by all of the partner organizations on different topics.

Day III: Trip to Assisi

Last day of the mobility was a trip to Assisi including visit to the Basilica St Francis of Assisi with Giotto’s frescoes “Life of Saint Francis” even though this is still hotly disputed in the art history because any relevant documentation of that period that could prove or disprove this was destroyed by the Napoleon’s troops who stabled their horses in the  Upper Church of the Basilica. We also visited other notable landmarks of Assisi such as Temple of Minerva, main square of the city, Rocca and had a nice walk through the town’s narrow streets.

About the project “Fascinating ICT Tools for People with Disabilities” (FIT):

The goal of the project is to develop and deliver ICT tool consisting of different modules as: educational tasks and tutorials, interactive digital films, registered workshops on Art Therapy and Recording Reality – creating internet magazine, all based on a simple communication, in easy to read text.

Project partner organizations:

  • Polskie Stowarzyszenie na Rzecz Osób z Upośledzeniem Umysłowym, Poland (NGO, Website)
  • Social Innovation Centre, Latvia (NGO, Website)
  • Zespół Szkół nr 6 w Rybniku, Poland (School, Website)
  • Initiatives for Civil Society, Bulgaria (NGO)
  • Associazione VIAINDUSTRIAE, Italy (NGO, Website)
  • Instituto Politecnico de Santarem, Portugal (University, Website)

Read more about the project here.

SIC also received the certificate of attendance:

FIT Foligno mobility Certificate

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