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Formentera gives new students leg up with language support

Presentacio del projecte dacolliment linguisticDetails were released this morning about a “language assistance project” to ease new students' transition into a new linguistic environment. The presentation was led by social welfare secretary Vanessa Parellada and Maria Isabel Jiménez, a teacher.

Faced with comparatively poorer grades and higher rates of school failure among immigrant youth, a factor which poses an obstacle to the students' normal development in professional and social contexts, the administration's immigration offices hatched a plan. It included a “language assistance” workshop tuned to serving the needs specifically felt by such newcomers.

The interest in assistance
Unlike in years past, this year's programme, which begins February 5 and concludes when students break for summer, won't be aimed at specific year levels. Rather, it will be available to each and every recently-arrived pupil enrolled in primary and secondary education.

Programme coordinator Maria Isabel Jiménez called it “a resource to help pupils improve their reading, writing and oral comprehension of Catalan” while framing the goal as “to give newcomers the tools to do what's being asked of them in their classes”.

The challenge of the initiative will be to boost not only academic performance, but also social integration. According to Councillor Parellada, “better integration at the school level means improved integration overall for students' families”.

Classes will be tuned to meet the educational abilities of each pupil, and instructors will additionally focus on promoting work in groups, levelling the playing field for participating students and fomenting a positive reception of Catalan, the so-called “vehicular language” of schools in the Balearics.

Starting this Thursday, January 25, signups will be held Monday to Friday from 9.00am to 2.00pm at the head offices of Formentera social services: Vénda des Brolls, 53. Enrolment closes Thursday, February 1.

For more information, telephone 971 32 12 71 or contact rescolar@conselldeformentera.cat. The location of classes will be decided based on the number and needs of pupils who register.

Seventeen local students pursue studies in geriatric care

Foto taller ocupacional geriatriaThe Formentera Council's Office of Social Welfare reports that the Formentera Day Centre will host Tramuntana VI, a course on care for dependent individuals in social institutions. Chosen by eight students, explained department head Vanessa Parellada, this course of study can ultimately lead to accreditation to enable its holder to work in the island's future residence”.

Students on this path learn how to care for dependent people within the institutions where they are employed, applying strategies to maintain and enhance personal autonomy and care-recipients' ability to relate to their surroundings.

The course ran from March and December. It will finish tomorrow. The training programme consisted of 370 hours of in-class learning and 1,422 hours of paid work practice, for which the students received a monthly stipend of roughly €1,000. Participants also paid into social security during training.

The project, valued at €134,295, was paid for with €128,580 and €11,120 in funding from the job service of the Balearic Islands (SOIB) and the Formentera Council. The interns were asked to work in the Day Centre and the island's home assistance initiative and received guidance from an individual who filled a joint charge as docent and course director.

Additional training
More instruction for carers of dependent individuals within social institutions is included in SOIB's programme for the unemployed. Nine islanders are taking part in the intensive course, which entails 370 hours of in-class learning and 80 hours of work practice and concludes in February or March. That SOIB-funded initiative is valued at €24,600. Students who successfully complete the programme will be accredited to provide care in the social sector. The only difference between the two courses is their length: one runs three months and the other, ten. Plus, students of the second course perform only the required hours of work practice, hence, there is no compensation.

All those interested in receiving training as a caregiver in the social sector should visit the Office of Social Welfare for details on future training programmes. In fact another course —Tramuntana VII— is already in the works and on track for a February or March start. Besides an age restriction —participation will be limited to students over 30— the characteristics of the course are the same. Ten paid spots will be offered. That programme's price tag is €120,510, paid for by SOIB (€115,319) and the Council (€5,191.20).

Formentera salutes its volunteers

foto dia voluntariThe Formentera Council's Office of Social Welfare held its observance of International Volunteer Day today, December 5, with a special show of appreciation for volunteers on the island.

In the morning from 11.00am to 1.00pm and again in the evening from 5.00pm to 7.00pm, visitors to Sant Francesc's plaça de la Constitució found a booth stocked with information and signup forms for potential volunteers.

At 7.00pm, Formentera Council president Jaume Ferrer offered local volunteers thanks and saluted them with a toast. 

Formentera observes International Day of People with Disabilities

Foto presentacio cartell discapacitatDetails of the plan to observe International Day of People with Disabilities this Sunday, December 3, were unveiled today. Vanessa Parellada, the island's social welfare secretary; Marta Uriarte, the director of the Formentera Day Centre; Camila Tessio, a psychologist at APNEEF, a special needs group for residents of Eivissa and Formentera; and Núria Alandes, head of a group called APMIPTEA that promotes the inclusion of people living with Autism spectrum disorders, seized on a crafts display as the perfect opportunity to present the poster for International Day of People with Disabilities.

From 11.00am to 1.00pm today in Sant Francesc's plaça de la Constitució, a group of adults enrolled at Formentera's day centre for persons with disabilities and the elderly will exhibit ashtrays made of repurposed bottles, aromatic soaps, sponges and massage oils with rosemary, all fruits of workshops held at the centre.

Charity walk
Tomorrow, December 2, the island will host the first-ever Caminada Solidària, “to bring visibility,” explained Parellada, “to the island's community of people with disabilities”. At 11.00am participants of the “Charity Walk” will set out from jardí de ses Eres on a two-kilometre circuit, which according to the secretary has been specially tuned for walkers of all abilities “in an effort to make the event inclusive”. “One of the top priorities at Formentera's day centre is the integration of those who use its services,” said Parellada. The last to make it to the finish line are expected to arrive by 1.00pm, where they will be greeted with an array of snacks at jardí de ses Eres. Advance registration for the walk is not required.

Then, on December 3, the two associations, APNEEF and APMIPTEA, will man information booths between 11.00am and 1.00pm in plaça de la Constitució, offering information about their activities and programmes on the island.

Formentera backs job seekers programme for university-educated youth

comercos formenteraThe employment and training sections of Formentera's Office of Social Welfare are driving a tally of local businesses, and are searching for young, qualified and university-educated candidates to fill three posts from December to July.

Applications, open to anyone who is under 30 and registered in the youth covenant of the regional job seekers' service (SOIB), must be received by November 24.

According to department head Vanessa Parellada, the programme seeks to bestow recent graduates of university and technical programmes with professional experience and good work habits.

“Today a university degree is no longer enough to guarantee work for its holder. We're glad to be offering local professionals the chance to work in winter,” —the position, she noted, begins in December— “particularly because the project will culminate in something so valuable as a register of local businesses”.

The Council has charged Santiago Juan, an employment and local development specialist, with overseeing the project, during which Juan will also act as the youths' mentor. The Council will receive €63,000 from SOIB to carry out the project.

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apneef 2018