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PRESS RELEASE

 

INTESA SANPAOLO: LAUNCHING WEBECOME,

AN EDUCATIONAL PLATFORM FOR TEACHERS AND PARENTS,

TO SUPPORT KIDS AFFECTED BY SOCIAL HARDSHIP

 

·   An online, free-of-charge platform available at all times to prevent and combat social hardship for children, and develop their transversal skills

·   Over 1,300 hours of recorded interviews and 150 videos with educational materials by 60 experts from different research fields, all available to teachers, parents and head teachers

·   The Regional Offices of the Ministry of Education will be actively involved in promoting the project in schools

 

Milan, 17 May 2019 – Today in Milan, the Intesa Sanpaolo project Webecome was launched in an event attended by Marco Bussetti (Minister of Education, University and Research) and Gian Maria Gros-Pietro (president of Intesa Sanpaolo). The project aims to prevent and combat social hardship affecting children between the ages of 6 and 10 (primary school children). The online training platform (www.webecome.it) is entirely free of charge and offers over150 in-depth educational materials for 1,300 hours of training running in three parallel pathways – one for teachers, one for head teachers, and one for parents. The project involves active participation by the Regional Education Offices (REOs) of the Ministry of Education, University and Research in order to promote the Webecome platform in schools.

 

 

Combating social hardship among young people is one of the responsibilities of schools, especially nowadays when, paradoxically, we are all constantly online and yet it is easier than ever to feel alone and disoriented, particularly for teens and children” said Marco Bussetti, Minister of Education.Meeting this need has been one of my priorities since my first day as Minister. For this reason, I believe projects such as the ‘Webecome’ platform are extremely useful and admirable. It’s an initiative for primary schools that aims to connect students, teachers, parents and head teachers, along with experts in the fields of pedagogy, clinical and behavioural psychology, in order to optimise and spread best practices of prevention and combat of juvenile social hardship. I congratulate and thank Intesa Sanpaolo for having set up this project which coincides completely with my own vision of education and, furthermore, responds perfectly to another basic principle of my mandate – a beneficial alliance between schools and new technologies”.

 

Gian Maria Gros-Pietro, President of Intesa Sanpaolo, commented: “With Webecome, Intesa Sanpaolo supports the prevention and combat of serious social hardship which threatens children’s development in their earliest years at school. The early stages of education are fundamental for sustained future success in school, and this is why it is important for children to have a carefree and peaceful environment. The experience of the Bank, (which offered more than 9 million hours of training to its 90,000 employees in 2018) has allowed us to build this multidisciplinary didactic tool together with qualified experts, and we hope it will be of use to teachers and parents”.

Seven topics are tackled, accompanied by an orientation map: bullying (presented in terms of relationship); cyberbullying (i.e. the value of closeness and friendship); diversity (represented not as difference but as the uniqueness of each individual with his/her own physical, ethnic and religious characteristics); nutrition (the savouring of food, and interest in its preparation); transversal skills such as the ability to learn, critical thinking, cooperation and curiosity; addictions (especially digital media, and prevention of alcohol or drug addiction); civic education (to foster conscientious adult citizens). Each topic is marked by a specific key word proposed as an ‘antidote’: T for together (against bullying), U for uniqueness (diversity), G for gusto (nutrition), S for support (cyberbullying), A for attitude (transversal skills), W for wellbeing (dependency), and R for relationships (digital citizenship education). Explained in the M for Map, these make up the “Growing-Up Alphabet”.

 

The materials are presented in a positive way which focuses on fostering habits, awareness and collaborative behaviour that (if promoted and developed correctly among kids, using engaging educational experiences) may reduce the probability of social hardship. This is one of the project’s unique features, along with the wide range of hardships considered in the multidisciplinary initiative and the quality of contributions supplied by more than 60 university lecturers and experts in the fields of pedagogy, sociology, medicine and psychology which are all relevant. The multiple research schools represents one of Webecome’s key values and allows website visitors to choose the path best suited to their own context, geographical area and different situations according to the needs of teachers for each class and parents for each individual child.

 

Today’s project launch of a platform with a potential outreach of 2.5 million students, 240,000 teachers and 18,000 primary schools, comes at the end of over one year of study and experimentation to refine the training paths and extend the available materials/content. By 2021, it is hoped to involve as many teachers as possible in 3-day workshops across Italy, to explore and experiment content to include in the didactic programme. The project will also be flanked by an advertising campaign presented across the country and communication campaigns.

The first test phase involved 100 schools and head teachers, 120 teachers, 50 parents and over 2,500 children in 6 Italian regions – Campania, Lazio, Lombardy, Piedmont, Puglia and Veneto. In this way, it was possible to collect, collate and analyse the different perspectives. As of today 60,000 materials and contents have been consulted in 15,000 website visits by 7,000 individual users.

The project was developed by the organisation Enhancement of Social Issues and Relations with the Universities, with the collaboration of Intesa Sanpaolo Formazione (the Group’s branch which promotes, creates and manages educational initiatives for businesses, authorised by MIUR) and the Department of Development Policies and Learning Academy of Intesa Sanpaolo (responsible for education initiatives for the Group’s 90,000 employees).

 

 

Press information

Intesa Sanpaolo - Media Office for Institutional, Social and Cultural Activities

stampa@intesasanpaolo.com

 

 

 

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