UN Year of Cooperatives Conference, Brescia, Italy, 16-24 June 2012


After a year and a half of activities with children by the Workers Coop of Mompiano, in Brescia, this a mini conference (but with qualified intervention from different countries) expanded in time, where children and adults meet: exhibits, video, theater, meetings.

In the UN Year of Cooperatives, we would like to point out the today, children play and their naturally “cooperative” action in spontaneous activities – rediscovered, re-launched, saved from social disintegration and “recognized” by adults – can, with active use of technology, leading directly to the production and sharing of information, locally as worldwide. Besides the forced competition and rampant consumerism, we can restart from the people and their real lives, perhaps to find a different harmony among people and with nature.

From children and acting in collaboration, a possible guidance for the future of all?

The weekconference

We’ll open for a week, from 16 to 24 June, the rooms and spaces of the Cooperative, in via Cacciadenno 6, Brescia, to activities with children. When we made it known on the net, just arrived, beyond expectations, numerous and enthusiastic membership, by colleagues, partners, friends, , with listings of major presences, from Italy, Serbia, Spain.


Narration of stories, creative writing, manipulative activities, drawing, sculpture, workshops of video and cartoons, active multimedia, music, projects of social utopias to imagine together, as well as puppets, animazione teatrale and other activities in which , strictly, the children are the protagonists. We are collecting registrations for the workshops and preparing the calendar of free activities. Most will take place on the premises of the cooperative, but also in other locations, beginning with the Public Library of Prealpino Village, our first partner since all the story began.

There will also be exhibitions of documents from schools, significant of how the children observe, imagine, know, tell the world. There will be a special section of the Virtual Museum of Small Animals, all based on observations of children and set up online by Paolo Beneventi, who is also the creator and organizer of the week in Cooperative.

They should also be present representatives from publishing and children’s culture industry, paper books and possibly video games and digital intelligent products.

We’ll screen videos with children as protagonists. In addition to a selection of quality amateur productions made over the years by different operators or from the schools, we have projects such as videos of TeleClip TV, the television of children of Spain and America, and will accommodate the Italian premiere of the amazing Spirit Ship, made with children of Brooklyn in Red Hook by Kristin Brenneman Eno, friend and correspondent of the children of the Cooperative. And then things from Cuba and other countries yet.

There are also a few plays, offered for free by professionals who have joined the conference. It will seek to ensure that events during the week do not overlap, but that all concerned can tend to participate at least in part, to everything that happens. One of our main objectives is to promote a fact real and productive meeting, besides the usual rituals and excitement of many academic events and conferences or festivals, among those who believe that the comparison, exchange and sharing are an important part of any cultural and educational speech. We will be together to meet, communicate, think together, plan.

The DVD ROM and the Video We are collecting a DVD ROM of photos, short videos, texts and other material, asking to collaborate especially to the people who, from different parts of the world, would have attended to our meeting, but can’t. During the week we will make a video about the activities with children and the encounters among operators.

The online subscription Most of the activities will be conducted on voluntary, and indeed there are many meetings in which participants pay to join. However, the organization requires an enormous amount of work that we would be able to repay at least in part. There also seems fair to operators who will be here to work, to repay a bit expenses, room and board. As there is some resource on consumables, paper, DVD burning and the like.

Given the circumstances, we don’t think to employ some of the money collected in the production of gadgets and gifts that basically has nothing to do with the speech that we carry. The “reward” that we offer to those who want to contribute on line to our project will be consistent with the project itself: a thanksgiving in the two multimedia publications (DVD ROM and DVD video) and the delivery of these publications.