In Italy, the pilot activities are implemented in 6 municipalities in the outskirts of Turin in the Piedmont Region (North West of Italy). This is an area with an overall population of around 100,000 inhabitants. Children with an immigrant background represent 9% of the population of the area, while about 11,2% of children living in the area are in absolute poverty.
The objectives of the pilot activities in Italy are:
• To pilot integrated training activities involving professionals and services managers belonging to different sectors (health, education, social, cultural etc.) and addressing children, including the most vulnerable ones,
• To ensure that the integrated training path is designed, monitored and supervised by a group of representatives of public and private local institutions,
• To inform local and national policies on ECEC.
Pilot activities in Italy have started with a mapping carried out through interviews and focus groups of existing ECEC services in order to provide an up-to-date framework of the existing level of integration among different services and different professionals.
The second step has been the settlement of the Local Steering Committee (LSC) composed of local stakeholders, including representatives of public and private institutions from different systems as well as parents and caregivers, and the planning of periodic LSC meetings.
The core activities of the pilot is the “shared journey” toward integration that includes training but also field activities. It is composed of: a) two roundtables, one at the beginning of the “shared journey” and one at the end, addressed to LSC members and representatives of local, regional and national authorities and public services managers; b) 8 meetings from April 2017 to March 2018 of which 5 meetings aimed at reaching a shared understanding of integration principles and values and 3 meetings more experimental, piloting integration in the three locations identified together with the LSC: a kindergarten with children aged 0-3, a pre-primary school with children aged 3-6 and pediatric ambulatory. The shared journey will finish in March 2018.