Project “YOUth Ambassadors of Non-Formal Learning”
Associazione TDM 2000
Interviewer: Alberto Cossu
Interviewee: Giacomo Carta (Youth National Coordinator of ACLI and Delegate of the National Youth Council).
Date and location:
04.06.2020 Cagliari, Italy.
Duration: 40 minutes
List of questions for the Interview:
- What is non-formal education to you? Do you know if in our country/region there are laws, strategies, action plans that define and deal with it?
Formal, informal and non-formal education. Three distinct strategies that coexist and unite to create the perfect mix of knowledge and competence. With non-formal education it is possible to fill certain gaps not addressed through curricular learning and, therefore, to obtain certain transversal competences in a solid and rapid way useful for the completion of one’s social/critical/professional profile. In Italy there is no real legislation, but there are recommendations, defined on the basis of European guidelines provided to the nation. Starting from this, we are fighting for a real legislation that, besides defining non-formal education, also defines and recognizes the potential of transversal competences and the figure of the Youth Worker (currently not recognized).
- What can it give to those who approach the world of work or want to become entrepreneurs? What is your personal experience (from youth in action projects to becoming an entrepreneur).
For several years I have participated in various international mobility projects, developing a real passion, feeling more and more the need to provide my contribution and express my active citizenship. After these experiences of growth, having carried out the National Civil Service, I took the path of the volunteer, feeling more and more part of a European growth system, until I reached more and more positions within the association “Acli” at first regional, then national level. Undoubtedly my socio-professional profile has been positively influenced by my participation and involvement in volunteering and mobility activities, through which I was able to develop and perfect the notorious soft skills that we hear so much about. Therefore, I think it is preferable and optimal to follow a path of growth in which formal, non-formal and informal education intertwine.
- Do you think that young people recognize the value of non-formal education?
Not fully. The message and the goal are often misunderstood and belittled. These opportunities are not always recognized and appreciated for their real value and usefulness, which is why obtaining and self-recognizing transversal competences is not immediate. On the other hand, those who understand and make use of the real potential offered by international mobility, in most cases, achieve exceptional personal results.
- Do you think that government and institutions should be more concerned with the validation and recognition of competences learned through non-formal education?
Yes, I do. On the national level we are working on this. More awareness raising to get recognition and validation of non-formal education, soft skills and the Youth Worker figure. In the last months we are preparing a legislative proposal to fill this legislative gap. The signs are positive, the interest from the institutions is alive. If they are recognized, it will surely be easier and possible to get much higher numbers and results.
- Are you working on promoting non-formal education?
Since I started my volunteer career I have always tried to promote learning through non-formal education, having understood its importance almost immediately. Now, with the association “Acli” we actively promote at regional, national and international level non-formal education, international mobility and the value of being active European citizens.