Good practices

Sportello al servizio del cittadino straniero per informazioni relative alle problematiche dei migranti | Helpdesk at the service of foreign citizens for information relating to migrants' challenges

The project was structured in two main training courses which, due to the different types of contents, were able to cover different training needs:

1 the literacy course, aimed at responding to a first level request: learning the use of the most common computer systems and, at the same time, improving the knowledge and command of the Italian language.

2 the training course for cultural mediators aimed at foreigners present in Italy for some time, in possession of a medium-high qualification, with a good command of the Italian language, able to answer a second level question, or acquire a professional qualification in constant expansion in the various service sectors in which there is an immigrant user.

7 parameters were established as training objectives:

  • Socialization and dialogue with "other" cultures

  • Build/strengthen self-esteem and confidence in him/herself   
  • Commitment to the learning process of the project (400 hours total of  which 268 hours of  theory and practice and 132 hours of internship in the field)
  • Ability to work with others
  • Respect of assigned schedules and goals
  • Operational autonomy in work/tasks assigned
  • Understanding your function/s as integrated part of a teamwork

Year(s): 2003, 2004

Target group(s): Foreigners already living in Italy for some time, in possession of a medium-high qualification and with a good command of the Italian language

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The training course for cultural mediators required participants’ training commitment of 400 hours (268 hours of theory / field practice, 132 hours of internship)

The training covered the following areas:

1. Basic elements of cultural anthropology

2. Advanced elements of interpersonal communication

3. Basic elements on international, European and Italian legislation

4. Elements of the history of the migratory phenomenon

5. Knowledge of the socio-cultural area, or organization and discipline of the sector.

It was considered necessary to combine the theoretical activities with the training experience of the internship (internship carried out in private or public facilities, operating in the immigration sector or in related services).

The Lazio Region authorized the release of the professional qualification of "Cultural Mediator" (determination no. D2655 of July 9, 2004), after a final examination carried out at the cooperative's headquarters, on December 2004.

Type of product

Paper-based material Course / Training Professional qualification as Cultural Mediator recognized by the Lazio Region

Brief description of the outcomes

Products: Two training courses (literacy and cultural mediators) provided the theoretical basis, while the internship, in private or public facilities operating in the immigration sector or in related services, provided practical experience.

Outcome: A total of 11 Cultural Mediators were trained (9 women and 2 men) providing qualified human resources with a professional profile very much needed, because of the migration crisis affecting Italy and more broadly Europe.

Impact on target groups / Transferability potential

The cultural mediators are engaged in three different levels of mediation:

- linguistic / communicative (bilateral interpreting, prevention and management of relational gaps and blocks, prevention of prejudices, etc.)

- guidance / information (translation of information that is used to bring the immigrant closer to the public service, making it accessible and, at the same time, communicating to the operators the specificities and cultural differences of the user);

- psycho-social and socio-cultural (role of social change, stimulus for the organization of the service and for its enrichment).

The Cultural Mediator carries out the primary function of facilitating communication between subjects belonging to different anthropological cultures. Immigrant himself/herself and possessing a good command of the language of the host country, s/he works to improve understanding between the actors, translating the explicit and implicit aspects of the different modes of communication and preventing situations of potential conflict.

Promoter of the initiative: Handicap Educazione Lavoro Partecipazione, Cooperativa Sociale Srl, ONLUS

Country: Italy

Languages available: Italian

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