Medicine, Mind and Adolescence 1999, XIV, 1-2
OF HEALTH EDUCATION FOR STREET AFRICAN CHILDREN
BASED ON THE KAIROLOGICAL METHOD (TUTORING PROJECT)
Daniela Nigri, Giovanni Cecchini1
The P.H.C. is well adapted to poor rural areas in developing countries.
Rapid urbanization has altered the traditional culture and has created
a complex of social problems in Africa’s cities, however. These
include an AIDS epidemic and the emergence of street children. Adolescents
have abandoned traditions, home and education due extreme poverty. Street
youth are maltreated by the police and are generally despised by the population.
These youth identify with the criminal world, drugs, prostitution, suffering
various abuses and violence. These often cause adverse, risky behaviours,
the loss of personal value and the means to life.
Health education toward street youth rehabilitation must be active, focused
not only on physical illnesses, but on risky behaviours as well. In the
last thirty years of prevention attempts of risky behaviours, many type
of modalities and intervention have been developed. Most of these have
been ineffective, and paradoxically, may have exacerbated the problems
that they attempted to solve.
A new model focused on individual problems and resources has emerged recently:
health education based on the new Kairological, humanistic method. This
new humanistic, existential method acknowledges the uniqueness of a country’s
culture. The application of the Kairological method requires the training
of health educators during a six-month course. The focus is on the anthropological
and social situation of the country, on the adolescent’s identity
development, on the most important methods of health education, and on
the humanistic Kairological method to be employed with the street youth.
The educators must be able to create a symbolic space for adolescents
were they can experience personal resources and invest in their own reality.
Young people live together for about two years, rediscovering the meaning
of friendship through a disciplined life and a show of responsibility
towards others. Through work they discover their own autonomy based on
resources and individual skills.
Relevant themes are addressed initially by brainstorming. Each youth,
employing free association of the first three words that are called to
mind, reveal unconscious activation of resources and problems lived in
the past. Using this subjective experience in group discussion, expert’s
interpretations, and the cultural expression of unconscious themes, young
people objectify their experience in their cultural contexts. Thus adolescents
experience their own resources, regaining their own identity as an answer
to the imperatives of love, truth and beauty.
Key Words: Street Children, Project, Health Education.
1. Correspondence to: Dr.ssa Daniela Nigri, Via 4 Novembre, 43/a, 21026
Gavirate (Va). E-mail: email@example.com.