2021

Delsbo Activity Club

Strands IF, in collaboration with Hudiksvall Municipality, the Vinci Nordic Foundation and local businesses are launching the “Delsbo Activity Club”. The goal is to get boys and girls aged 10-12 years old to be more active, make new friends and integrate into society. Every week, 50-70 kids come and practise football with local leaders aged 18-25 years old.

The Activity Club project aims to give children aged 10-12 years old greater choice when it comes to exercise as a way of giving them the desire, the joy, the confidence and the motivation to stay active their entire lives. The initiative will improve children’s physical and metal health, their performance at school, and their level of inclusion and integration.

Many of these children and young people live in deprived areas, defined as “geographically isolated areas characterised by a low socio-economic status where criminals have an impact on local society”.

Deprived areas also typically exhibit high levels of unemployment, high numbers of people on benefits and high populations of immigrants with foreign backgrounds. A large number of the young people who grow up in such socially and economically disadvantaged areas leave school without any sort of qualification. Gaining access to further education and getting a foot on the job ladder are crucial to protecting young people, and can reduce their risk of developing problem behaviours and getting involved with criminal activity.

 

Archangels

The “Archangels” Project is a foundation that creates activity plans for children and young people in Lørenskog Municipality. Organised football training sessions called “footy fun” are run several weeks out of the year. Local schools are invited to use these activity plans – which are maintained by the local municipality.

“Archangels” was founded after two young boys, Mikael (7) and Gabriel (1), suddenly passed away in Lørenskog on 19 July 2020. The boys’ father, family and close friends are the ones behind the in memoriam foundation. The foundation will honour the boys by contributing to the local community.

The aim of “Archangels” is to encourage and make it easier for children and young people in Lørenskog Municipality to get involved in play and free-time activities. This includes everything from building playgrounds and sports facilities, to supporting and financing membership fees for activities for children from low-income families.

While long-term the foundation wants to expand the project to the entire country, it only make sense to focus initially on Lørenskog, given the boys’ connection to the area.

There are no words to describe the pain that the boys’ family have suffered, but there is at least some comfort to be found in making a lasting impression on the local community in memory of the boys. “Archangels” wants to improve the wellbeing of other children and to contribute to better measures for promoting children’s health and preventing health conditions.

 

Buff

Buff works to prevent criminality and mental illness in children with detained parents (police custody/prison). Every year, around 70 children get the opportunity to attend a camp where every one of them is in the same situation – meaning no-one has to feel different. This year, a three-day camp was held at Drakudden in Stockholm. Children got the opportunity to try their hand at activities like camping, canoeing, arts and crafts and playing on a bouncy castle. All the children have a guardian with them and there are on-site counsellors, social workers and psychologists. The camp is an opportunity for these children to hang out with other children in the same situation, and gives them the chance to change their thinking and get support from trained adults.

Buff works to prevent criminality and mental illness in children whose parents are in prison. We empower children and give them the opportunity to make their own choices in life, rather than being forced to follow in their parents’ footsteps. The aim is to give these children a chance to be included in society, rather than being pushed to the edge of it.

We want to give children whose parents are in prison the opportunity to attend a summer camp. Here, they get an opportunity to talk to people who know about their situation, and to meet other children with similar experiences in a safe environment. At the camp, they get to take part in activities with other children and are given the opportunity to receive personal emotional support.

The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child forms the basis for everything we do at Buff, meaning that our focus should always be on the best interests of the children. We endeavour to give a voice and support to Children and Young People who have a parent or family member who is in prison, in police custody or on probation. These children shouldn’t be punished for their parents’ crimes by being met with prejudice or potentially being pushed to the edges of society.

The UN Convention also established children’s rights to their own information, their own support and their own protection. It’s about making these children visible. Parents need support as well, both those on the inside and those on the outside. Society is currently unable to give every child the support that they are actually entitled to. There are lots of charitable organisations working alongside social services, and it is here the Buff also plays an important role.

 

Lyftet Independent School

Building up a “clothes library” of warm clothes and shoes gives every child the opportunity to get involved in outdoor activities and outdoor days. With the help of Tretorn, Lyftet School now has a closet full of jackets, trousers, hats, mittens and boots in all sorts of sizes which children can borrow when they need them. When you can take part in the same activities as everyone else, your sense of equality and integration increases.

The Lyftet Independent School has identified a need that first came about because the school works in the most segregated and socio-economically deprived area of Gävle. Lots of children, predominantly in the intermediate and higher classes, don’t get the opportunity to join in with outdoor winter activities for the simple fact that they don’t have warm clothes. At the Lyftet School, every child should have the opportunity to take part in outdoor activities during the winter months, even if they don’t have suitable clothes for the occasion.

Not being able to go sledding or to join in with outdoor day trips leads to exclusion and makes children feel ashamed, something with children often hide with various made up reasons. There is a huge desire to take part in outdoor activities and over time the school has tried to collected second-hand items of clothing that can be borrowed when needed. Collecting enough clothes and items in the right size etc. has proven to be tough.

The aim of the project is that all the children should feel involved and be able to take part in activities just like any other child. Clothes can be borrowed “discreetly”, meaning that children from economically disadvantaged families don’t have to feel excluded or like their parents should feel ashamed because they are unable to give their child everything they need for the school day.

 

Teamwork

Teamwork is an initiative from Önnereds HK aimed at increasing wellbeing and reducing exclusion among children and young people in the local area (Tynnered/Önnered/Gothenburg). The project runs a breakfast club where children get breakfast, help with schoolwork and a place of refuge together with other children and grown-ups.

Together with local businesses and associations, we run a number of different initiatives within the three areas we focus on: raising employment, improving health and increasing security.

There are huge differences between the living conditions of the children and young people living in Gothenburg today. Because of this, access to a secure and active everyday life and to a positive social network is determined by where you come from. We want to change this.

Teamwork is an initiative from Önnereds HK aimed at increasing wellbeing and reducing exclusion among children and young people in our local area. Together with local businesses and associations, we run a number of different initiative within the three areas we focus on: raising employment, improving health and

increasing security.

The eating habits and levels of exercise among children and young people in Sweden have been on the decline for many years. An alarming situation given the huge health and also social benefits offered by physical exercise and a balanced diet. That’s why we want to do what we can to buck the tend.

We believe it’s important to have a platform where you can meet other people and feel a sense of community. This helps to increase people’s sense of security and of being a part of society. Which is why we want to help create a safe space where children, young people and parents can feel involved and valuable.

It’s often said it takes a village to raise a child. Which is why we need to organise and work together – as a team.

Having a meaningful job is important for feeling like a part of society. But knowing where to turn or what opportunities are out there can be tough. Which is why we and our partners want to open our doors to increase participation in the job market among both young people and adults – so that more people can get a foot on the job ladder.

 

Project Mathivation

The Mathivation project aims to increase interest in maths and technology in deprived areas (Greater Gothenburg area). Young people get the opportunity to learn more about things like programming at various events, talks and inspiration days. The goal is to broaden horizons and show that learning maths can be fun and engaging.

The aim of Mathivation is to encourage, inspire and engage schoolkids in maths and programming through education designed for their level. And to get more kids studying tech subjects at high school and beyond in their professional lives, or continuing their tech education at university or college.

With this project, Vinci Energise is aiming to help Mathivation achieve its goal and also to show what maths and programming are used for outside the classroom with real-world examples like the New Hisings Bridge. By making this connection clear, we hope to be able to help with integration in segregated areas and also to encourage young girls to pursue an education in technology. Our presence at the school in the form of various talks will also give young people more adult role models.

Mathivation was founded by students at Chalmers Technical College and is a not-for-profit enterprise which has been a part of the West Sweden Chamber of Commerce since 2012. The enterprise is run alongside ordinary schoolwork in order to increase motivation to attend school in general, and in particular to study maths and programming. When students teach other students, they create role models at the school, strengthening the culture of learning. These role models can also act as resources for learning at school and in the city. By continuously employing students who have proven themselves when they leave Grade 9, we create more jobs for young people – who become local role models. Our work with students, teachers and the city is a long-term endeavour. Our aim is that, in the long-term, the region can continue this work under its own steam, with assistance from the local resources that have been developed in collaboration with Mathivation.

Sollentuna Dragons

Sollentuna Dragons is a team playing under Sollentuna Ice Hockey Club that was started in 2016. The Dragons are a hockey team for players of all ages with various functional impairments. It’s hard to find another team in Sweden that offers the same opportunity to meet up and play a game of hockey. The project’s goal is to enable the team to travel overseas to play against a team with players who all have functional impairments.

Sollentuna Dragos is a team that plays under Sollentuna Ice Hockey Club and was started in 2016. The Dragons are a hockey team for players of all ages with various functional impairments. Our team has around 14 players. We meet twice a week and practice ice hockey and indoor bandy, and also do physical exercise.

We are the only team in Sweden that plays standing para ice hockey. There are other teams that play sledge hockey. Which of course makes it difficult to find teams to play against. We meet parents, ladies’ teams, hen parties, and caretakers in order to get matches together. Our team has players of all ages, ranging from 10 to 42 years old.

Our focus is solely on enjoyment and we realise how important it is to feel like you belong to a team. Many of our players have tried to join ordinary teams but have been forced to quit because their functional impairment has stopped them from playing.

With us, everyone is welcome regardless of level: we have no entry requirements and training sessions are adapted entirely to players’ abilities. We are responsible for all our tools so we are updating our equipment all the time, buying new items and replacing bits of kit for players who are growing.

We put a lot of time into recruiting new players through the Swedish Para Sports Association, Paraförbudet, and other organisations for children and young people with functional impairments. So that equipment isn’t a reason not to get involved, we purchase items and allow players to borrow them while playing with us.

 

The Bedroom

The “Bedroom” Project offers people suffering acute homelessness – people who for various reasons are not in contact with social services and therefore have no guarantee of a roof over their heads – the opportunity to get somewhere to stay and something to eat for a few nights in crisis situations. If you are homeless and fall ill, then you should be able to come to the “Bedroom” and rest, shower, sleep and recover. The project aims to make life easier for Stockholm’s most vulnerable.

Sweden has a so-called “roof over your head guarantee” — No-one should have to sleep on the streets, and no-one should have to freeze or starve. Unfortunately, the system is far from flawless. There are many people who, for various reasons, slip through the cracks in the system. Some might not have any form of ID and can’t afford to get themselves some, meaning they can’t get help from social services. Such a simple thing as not having ID can lead to a person finding themselves entirely outside our systems with no right to help.

The Project, and the dream, is to have the financial capabilities to give people suffering acute homelessness – people who for various reasons are not in contact with social services and therefore have no guarantee of a roof over their heads – the opportunity to get somewhere to stay for X number of nights in crisis situations.

Now, in collaboration with Agne who owns the “Gustaf af Klint” hostel in Stockholm, the dream is to ensure that we have the opportunity to give temporary refuge to people who urgently need to recover. The concept is that Lotta and her friends and volunteer colleagues will, as part of their day-to-day work, assess when someone is in a bad state or simply needs a space to recuperate, some security, or the opportunity to spend a night or two in a bed with clean sheets, to take a shower and to lock their door when they go to sleep.

To get a proper breakfast and feel the way the rest of us are used to feeling every day.

The project aims to make life easier for Stockholm’s most vulnerable. To be financially capable of focusing on older homeless or poor people who live at the edge of society and who, as Lotta says, aren’t just homeless people – they’re somebody’s child, parent, sibling and “our best friends”.

 

Södra Hamnen

Sydhavns Compagniet is giving socially disadvantaged people the opportunity to take their first steps into a working relationship and to experience the value of being included and making a contribution.

Sydhavns Compagniet (SC) wants to grow social work in society by bringing disadvantaged citizens closer to meaningful employment.

The project is aimed at people who have been awarded an early or national pension, and people in vulnerable situations.

We want to include these people in a working relationship to give them more self-esteem and the sense that they are making a difference. Many people who find themselves without a job or function to perform end up on the edges of society. Sydhavns Compagniet is giving socially disadvantaged people the opportunity to take their first steps into a working relationship and

to experience the value of being included and making a contribution.

Sydhavns Compagniet is a local NGO with a long history of empowering people to integrate into their local communities. Everyone is welcome at our drop-in centre and activation activities via meaningful working groups, regardless of who they are and what challenges they face.

 

Wild Kidz

The Wild Kidz Project gives children who don’t usually have the financial means to take part in activities the chance to get out into nature at a “survival and fishing camp”. At the camp, children get to try their hand at fishing and other “survival” activities. All the children get a nibble in the form of a goodie bag and can even take their fishing rods home with them if they want to. The Project runs 8-10 camps and offers fishing permits and petrol money to lots of families.

The guiding light in everything we do is the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child — Every child should have the right to play and enjoy their youth. We achieve this through our free activities and cover all our bases from A to Z. Joining in with our activities is free, and bus travel to the camp, food and any equipment is also included so that it really is possible for everyone to get involved.

We know that many disadvantaged children feel extra bad when it comes to the holidays and other times when society “shuts down”. Society doesn’t offer enough support, which is where we come in and make the biggest difference.

We want to give disadvantaged children a chance to grow socially and culturally — Quite simply to brighten up the lives of disadvantaged children. The underlying goal is to help children to learn how to be a good friend, how to behave, how to feel good, or at least better, themselves. We do this through talks on mental illness, practical exercises, teaching children what to do to love themselves and helping them to help themselves. We also want to help teach children about differences, about other cultures and how to treat each other with respect. We even include lessons on survival.

The one rule for our activities is that everyone has to be nice. At our camps, you don’t have to sit still and be quiet — but you do have to be nice. We have also been appointed as Environmental Activists for the North and consider the environment in everything we do, from food waste to recycling clothing and furniture. WildKidz is active across all of Norrbotten county, meaning all 14 municipalities.

 

Henån IF

Henån IF is a not-for-profit football club in Orust that wants to give its youngsters their own sets of training and matchday kits.
The goal is to increase the sense of community and belonging, and to create a sense of a “we” – not just for the club’s unaccompanied kids, but for all its members.

Henån IF is a not-for-profit football club in Orust with around 300 members playing across some 10 kids’, youth and senior teams.

The club also runs an integration project with a separate team for newly arrived youngsters, primarily from war-torn areas like Afghanistan, Syria and Eritrea. At Henån IF, not only can young people practise language, cooperation, respect and conditioning. They can also feel like they belong and enjoy a meaningful pursuit.

Part of the project is already up and running, but now Henån IF want to roll up their sleeves and do even more. Currently, youngsters can borrow matchday kits from senior team members any time they have a match to play. But in order to increase the sense that this is their own team, Henån IF now wants to be able to give every player their own kit.

This project aims to increase the sense of community and belonging, and to create a sense of a “we” – not just for the club’s unaccompanied kids, but for all its members.

 

Heroes’ House – The “Hub” Project

Heroes’ House in Umeå is a halfway house for families with children who have suffered serious illnesses. When you’re ill and at a high risk of infection, it’s easy to find yourself being excluded. That’s why Heroes’ House is building an activity room with access to a Playstation, gaming chairs and other tech gadgets that will make it easier for children to stay in touch with their friends. The Luleå facility has planned a housewarming party and will also be running a competition to find themselves a name.

Heroes’ House in Umeå is a halfway house for families with children who have suffered serious illnesses. When everything around them is shaky and uncertain, families need to be able to be together. Heroes’ House is like a home away from home, and makes it easier for kids to play with friends while still focusing on getting healthy. Heroes’ House is a light and roomy place with a warm atmosphere that offers privacy in close proximity to the children’s ward at Norrland University Hospital. Families get the freedom to choose what they want to do each day. Research has shown that children who get to stay in a secure environment together with their families get back to health faster. A child living in a secure environment is in a better position to recover from an illness.

We want to create a natural space for young people aged roughly 12-18 years old. By creating this sort of space, we will help young people find their own “corner” in the house that can act as a kind of “sanctuary” – to help them switch off simply by switching on. This will also, by extension, improve the situation for the entire family.

Over the course of the project, the aim will also be to involve VINCI Energies’ network of employees in Umeå as appropriate, and to provide communication (both internally and externally) on progress and completion.

© Vinci Foundation 2020