Street to Street
STREET TO STREET puts street youth in Freetown in touch with students in the UK via online video blogs. “it is a phenomenal insight and opportunity and it really did capture the kids’ interest”
“Street to Street has changed a demotivated and disinterested class into an engaged and captive audience………It fits perfectly with Citizenship and Geography themes in school, particularly in developing empathy and taking steps to overcome stereotypes in a way a one off DVD or textbook cannot” Chestnut Grove School.
Ballack, Youngest and Timberland
S2S offers students worldwide the opportunity to engage directly with street youth in Sierra Leone, via video and an internet forum. 6 young people aged 12 – 16 in Freetown upload weekly videos, so students from several schools can respond, asking questions, building relationships or just cheering them on.
It’s a massive and intense introduction to the hugely complex issues around the causes of poverty, and of the equally huge pitfalls involved in trying to help those caught up in it – but one which makes it immediate and real. “it enables in depth learning about another culture in a way a one off DVD or textbook cannot”
The benefits for the International students are self evident. But for the street children from Freetown too there was a considerable impact, as we tried to assist them off the streets and into education. Since it began in January 2010 all 6 young people have a place to sleep and are in some level of education. Street to Street is designed as a long term, user led project, allowing relationships to build and understanding to grow over time with all the volatility, passion and emotional ups and downs that chart teenage life.
Ballack – named after a Chelsea footballer. His parents are dead. He had a few years schooling but could not afford to stay in school unsupported. He wants to be like Obama.
Youngest – has a mother but she is poor and forced him to go out to sell water so he ran away. He doesn’t want to grow old on the streets.
Timberland – has lived on the streets since he was 7. He gets his name from the shoes he used to wear. He wants to be a lawyer.
White Boy has no parents and little education. He washes cars for money and wants to go to school. As we have watched him grow he has become a great dancer but still struggles with reading and writing.