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Nautical sports centre and skate park hold spotlight as youth gather for plenary assembly

foto 2018 consell joventut 4The Formentera Council's Sala de Plens played host today to the plenary assembly of the local youth participatory council (Consell de Participació de la Infànicia i la Joventut). CiF chairman Jaume Ferrer welcomed the pupils of three public schools who make up the council, and introduced them to members of the administration also in attendance.

Immediately afterwards, participants saw a UNICEF video of highlights from the sixth edition of the Balearic Islands Parlament Infantil programme and containing an overview of the environmental proposals that, in 2017, responded to the question: “What kind of world do we want to live in? Looking ahead to the Agenda 2030”. Children also saw a snippet of video showing Formentera's representatives at this year's session as they shared ideas about eradicating violence. After the video, members of the Formentera's representatives at Parlament gave their comrades a report of their experiences.

Next on the agenda was an evaluation by children in the youth council of the senior CiF secretaries' handling of the issues raised at past plenary assemblies—both improvements already executed or those awaiting completion.

To that extent, infrastructure and mobility secretary Rafa González gave a presentation about the current outlook for a project to build a skate park.

González gave a detailed picture, images included, of assorted nooks in the planned park, like distinct areas for skateboarders and rollerbladers and a special exercise equipment space especially for senior citizens. He spoke about the permit process anticipating actual the actual build and responded to clarifying questions from the assembly. He also teased a tentative start date for the four-month works project: after summer.

Next up, sports secretary Jordi Vidal gave updates on the currently under-construction Nautical Sports Centre and shared images of the range of spaces the Centre comprises. Vidal, for his part, alluded to the possibility the facility would be open as early as the start of 2019. Assembly members put questions to Vidal once his presentation was through.

Then came a turn for general questions, which were fielded alternately by senior CiF secretaries and chairman Ferrer.

At that point, youngsters posed pointed questions about the eco punt recycling bins, including a reflection on whether or not it was necessary to reward recycling with points.

The second biannual assembly of Formentera's Consell de Participació de la Infànicia i la Joventut also featured questions about the timeline for completion of the new Sant Ferran school, animal cruelty (abandoned dogs), capping the number of incoming vehicles on the island, concerns about the large number of watercraft which moor on Formentera's coast and the importance of keeping beaches clean.

Formentera pupils join seventh 'children's' parliament'

foto parlament infantil 2The youth office of the Formentera Council reports three local pupils took part this Monday in the seventh session of the Balearic Islands' Parlament Infantil, or Parliament for Kids.

Kiara Berazategui (Mestre Lluís Andreu), Mario Romero (El Pilar de la Mola) and Adora Tur (Sant Ferran) from Formentera's own youth participatory council travelled to Mallorca, not only to talk about the proposals they brought on behalf of their peers back home, but to work with other young people from the region to prepare a document called a “peace vaccine”.

“Vacuna de pau i bon tracte”

The document, whose full title is “Peace vaccine and pledge of good deeds against violence of all kinds”, includes a dozen suggestions about how to combat the virus of violence—everything from ending wars and regulating the sale and manufacture of weapons to introducing peace education and conflict resolution in school and the importance of levelling societal differences by eliminating hierarchy.

Parlament Infantil takes place once a year in observance of Universal Children's Day and is organised by the Balearic Parlament, the Office of the Defence of the Rights of Minors (ODDM) and the UNICEF committee for the Balearics.

Parlament reaffirms its commitment to supporting organisations and actions which promote awareness about the problems facing children around the world. In so doing, the legislative body seeks to enliven the ongoing debate and create a space where the issues that affect children can be addressed, and this in such a way as to foster aptitudes and attitudes essential to citizen participation and help children interiorise messages of sustainability, ecology and appreciation for their surroundings.

Session video:  https://youtu.be/XmxMSGupTlo

More than 400 turn out for Formentera's summer offer of sports camps and day programmes

foto escola estiu 2018 4The Formentera Council's youth services department announces the start of the island's 2018 summer school today, a programme scheduled to continue through the month of August at three local schools—Mestre Lluís Andreu, and in Sant Ferran and la Mola. One hundred forty children are signed up to take part in this year's programme, which is overseen by a 21-member team of professional youth workers and a programme director.

Activities are geared towards children aged three to twelve born between 2006 and 2014, and run weekdays from 9.00am to 2.00pm (8.00am early start is available). Kids can choose from a range of activities during the two-month programme, including arts and crafts, fitness, games, music, dance, theatre and cooking. Outings to the beach are also organised, as well as an additional swimming unit.

In the words of social welfare chief Vanessa Parellada, the programme is about “offering a fun, educational space for young children in summer where they can learn to use their free time wisely and engage in 'smart play'”. She said the schools were conceived as a leg-up for islanders juggling both work and a family, and daycare needs as one factor of the island's high rate of employment.

Sports camps
The Council's sports office has taken the lead in coordinating two sports camps as well, part of a bid to offer families a diverse array of summertime options. The synchronised swimming camp is aimed at children aged five to fifteen. This year 87 local kids have signed up to join in an assortment of activities ranging from acrosport and motor skills-boosting play to dance, theatre and swimming (both traditional and synchronised). The programme, which ends just before the normal academic year starts, is staffed by eight youth workers and a volunteer aide.

The Council also organises an athletics camp, and fifty children between the ages of three and six are set to get in on the fun. They will take part in a multitude of activities, including arts and crafts, recreational swim, healthy lifestyles, plastic arts and play that is specially-tuned to foment motor skills. Winding down in late August, the programme is managed by four youth workers and one lifeguard.

A number of the island's sports clubs will put on summer programmes, too, with additional support provided by the Council. The team at this summer's basketball camp propose activities to 54 kids aged four to twelve, and tennis and padel camps (with enrolment at 35 and 12, respectively) exist for kids from five to 16.

New this year is a football camp, in which forty youngsters (ages six to 16) have signed up to take part.

Formentera's youth council

foto consell-infanciaThis week members of the island's youth participatory council, the Consell de Participació de la Infància i la Joventut, congregated for the group's second plenary session of the 2017-2018 school year. Social welfare secretary Vanessa Parellada was there to welcome attendees, who represented primary and secondary schools of the island, and give a sneak peek at the proposals, still in the draft phase, that arose from the participation-driven process of Formentera's strategy on young people, and which will face scrutiny by the island's coalition of community leaders, the Consell d'Entitats.

From tackling wasteful water use and advocating renewable energies, through safeguarding posidonia meadows and preserving s'Estany des Peix, to regulating boats that anchor on the local seaboard and promoting recycling, measures tabled by the youngsters had one thing in common: the environment.

Saluting the youngsters on the measures they had floated, the secretary affirmed they slotted neatly in the Council's own sustainability model, calling it “a shame some of these didn't make it on the agenda at the recent “state of Formentera” debates.

Evening of rap and traditional song at Casal de Joves

Foto cartel tarda rap glosadorsThis Friday, one of Formentera's most entrenched musical traditions will go toe to toe with hip-hop at the inaugural edition of an evening that pairing local glosadors with rappers.

Put together between the Marià Villangómez library, the Casal de Joves and the Formentera chapter of Obra Cultural Balear, the event was concocted as a way to bridge generational divides by using the power of the word. Though outwardly dissimilar, the two forms of art have a great deal in common.

Organisers say they hope the intergenerational event highlights possible parallels between rap, a staple of younger generations, and a form known as glosa, which has been passed down and kept alive over the aeons.

Scheduled to take part are glosadors Pep of ca n'Andreu, Vicent Jeroni, Francisca Torres of can Pep Simon and rappers Kelevra, El Puerta, Elian C. and, on guitar, Mus.

The event will take place Friday, March 23 at 6.30pm in the Casal de Joves.

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