At the Verso Creativity Lab we identify tools to nurture an ability to imagine the future and support young people in their personal growth.
In 2016, we established an experimental project in Arezzo (Tuscany) especially for teenagers: Verso Creativity Lab. We provide resources to help implement projects that are inspired by the needs directly identified by the young people themselves. There are two key questions which guide our work together: “what do we need?”, “what do we want to do?”.
The organisational model is centred around a staff of teenage volunteers , and the individual activities are run by small teams. We believe that organisational expertise is instrumental to understanding how to be oneself before knowing how to take action: a training ground for “inner leadership”.. There are three important skills that we attempt to nurture: recognising our own specific personal qualities; feeling involved in the issues and challenges of a changing world; acting within a group and utilising the group’s potential in a cooperative way, with an open and optimistic vision of the future.
We offer courses on personal growth which are open to everyone, with the aim of honing observational skills and making more conscious choices: courses onself-esteem ((Boost My Self-Esteem),), mindfulness ((Journey to My Core),), philosophy practised through TV series(Philosophy in Series),), autobiographical writing and other forms of personal storytelling ((How to Find Yourself,, Presenting Yourself Through Images).).
We also organise meetings with people who have taken unconventional paths, to learn how they found their way, overcame uncertainties, transitions and difficult times, and were able to push past those who said “you’re not going to make it”. We entitled this series of meetings Inspiring People.
These three aspects – generative community, personal growth, inspirational encounters – are the project’s core pillars.
The Urban project has concluded; we have provisionally closed the Arezzo office and are writing up the project report while waiting to implement it in other cities.