Marseille: ‘School for the time being’, a gift given to children in extreme danger

Jeanne Bouvier Founder of School Now © DR / BDx

We are in 2012, gypsies were evicted from a residential property in the northern regions of Marseille before residents set fire to the ruins of their camp. Jeanne Bouvier wants to understand, goes to meet gypsies, finds out about children who did not go to school. Trained as a psychiatrist and teacher, she just can’t stand this situation. She then mobilized evenings and weekends to educate them before the association was established in 2014.” school now in order to maintain its operation. ” I do not accept that not all human beings have the same rights Jean Bouvier explains: You need to know what water you should bring for food and drink.. Rainy days when the ground remains wet for several days, with no shoes. In France, children live in precarious conditions that we cannot imagine She talks about the gypsies: They are at the end of the line in terms of rejection and that doesn’t change…until they meet someone who is interested. “.

Jeanne Bouvier meets Albanian and Bulgarian children…

But make no mistake about it, fate is difficult not only for Gypsies, Jeanne Bouvier crosses the path of Albanian children, Bulgarians … Children from any country live in slums, squat, sleep in rundown cars or condominiums: ” This is the most difficult place to work. These are the ‘Forbidden Lands’ where no one goes but where I can enter when I’m alone “.In this way, 1,000 children were supported in 10 years.” Today some kids are in high school, others are working. I saw someone, a while ago, who got a job at SNCF and he told me that his family had found a place to stay “.

She talks about her relationship with the municipality: I never had any blockage, under the previous municipality I was able to register the children and they benefited from the free canteen but what has changed with the new municipality is that things go very fast and there is no more eviction during school time which is a real advantage because when a child has to change school several Times a year, that baby can not keep up “.

“Teachers change their lives”

In addition to the Marseille City Council, Jeanne Bouvier would like to thank the teachers: “ They do an extraordinary job. They say they are just doing their job, which is not true. It goes much further. I think of the tutoring given to allow children to make up for what they missed; For this teacher who allowed a young girl to walk around the classroom for weeks to adjust. I think of that little kid who treated his burnt feet with tiny little shoes and searched for another pair. I think of the teachers’ concern for parents, and especially for that father who was so anxious on the first day to leave his child at school that he rang the bell every ten minutes for the news. I’m thinking of this teacher who goes to find the kids for bikes on the weekends with his family…so, yeah, teachers change their lives “.

National education is not at the level

On the other hand, it considers that civic education is not at the level. ” University President Bernard Begnier came to spend a day in the slums. The problem is not at the level, but at the national level. We need more places for these children, especially in universities, national education should take more into account the situation of street children in France. It is essential that children at high risk are recognized in texts And she does not hide that she was a little annoyed According to the status reserved for Ukrainians. ” I took care of Ukrainian families, made requests to send children to college and there the directorate called me to tell me that the procedure was different for them, that places were for them. I am happy for these children but why what is possible for some not for others On the side of the Marseille Municipal Council, an elected official asserts: “ Today we know that the means can be opened. We will not forget it “.

Benoit Payan: ‘I never imagined the truth you made me discover’

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Jean Bouvier and Mayor of Marseille, Benoit Payan © DR / BDx

Jeanne Bouvier then would like to commend the work done by the judges of the Juvenile Court of Marseille: “ What they do is extraordinary, I learn things with every hearing. For seven years we have been working together and thanks to these kids they have seen their lives change It also thanks its partners from the Fondation de France and the Abbé Pierre Foundation, the leading partners. Don’t forget “Vacances Léo Lagrange” who knew how to be there in an emergency to find school bags.

Benoit Payan is present at this demonstration, turning to Jean Bouvier admits: “ I thought I knew my city. I would never have imagined the truth you made me discover “.” He continues, of course, you let the kids go to school, but what you’re doing is beyond that, you’re giving back his dignity to people. You do what no one else does. You are with the invisible, with those who lower their heads It is called: I just want to say thank you. Without you, this town wouldn’t be what it is “.

Michelle Kerr

Comedy “Sabi and Teresa”

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Comic strip tells the story © DR / BDx

Sabi and Theresa is Jeanne Bouvier’s first comic strip, with drawings by Diane Morell. Jeanne Bouvier would like to explain: I say living conditions but it’s not about being miserable. Kids have found something magical. It’s a cheerful and hopeful book with kids who love school Clearly out of touch, this book invites us to reflect and accept the other and shows that solutions are possible. Sabi and Teresa are twins who live in Marseille with their parents and older brother Salajan. In their shantytowns, they share everything and play amid shacks built from recycled materials. Driven by the courage of their family and their teacher’s benevolence, Sabi and Tereza together will discover the joy of words.Theresa is fast-growing and loves to read.The appearance of a precious object and a mysterious little lady “Sabi” helps her gain confidence and develop a love of learning.

“Sabi and Theresa” by Jeanne Bouvier and Diane Morell, La Pimpante editions, €14, on sale in bookstores

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