Freedom As an active state


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Helsinki´s Director of Youth Affairs Tommi Laitio´s presentation on how good youth work promotes freedom.

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Freedom As an active state

  1. 1. Freedom as anactive state- how Helsinki´syouth work builds upcapabilities?Tommi LaitioDirector of Youth AffairsCity of HelsinkiCitizens for Europe Seminar28 May 2013
  2. 2. 595 000 residents10-17yo: 41 00013-17yo: 27 0005 000 / age group
  3. 3. We re dealing with the first globalgeneration in Finland s historyCross-border familiesNew notions of a familyReal experiences of discriminationTested capabilities for empathy andnegotiationDiversity of world viewsGenerational experience ofconstant competitionA lot more scaredStrong ethos of helpStrong ethos of fairnessStrong trust in institutions
  4. 4. The Youth Department supports youth inbecoming active citizens.Activities are directed at all young peoplein Helsinki, with the aim of encouragingthem to find the forms of activity andrecreational spaces that suite them best.The Youth Department constantly updatesits working methods by monitoring youthphenomena and changes in the livingconditions of young people.Mission
  5. 5. (Ruudin päättäjämiitti /Katri Riikonen NK)90 locations1 332 487 visits (2012)770 hobby groups (2012)10 257 members (2012)1,3 m € in grants for NGOs (+rents)400 professional youth workers29,5m€
  6. 6. ”The capabilities approach starts from avery simple question: what are peoplereally able to do and be? What realpossibilities do they have?”- Martha Nussbaum: Creating Capabilities. TheHuman Development Approach.
  7. 7. The Paradox of Youth WorkIntegrateEmancipate
  8. 8. Coreprinciples ofour work
  9. 9. 1. Default unit is a group
  10. 10. 2. Freedom to choosehas intrinsic value
  11. 11. Youth clubs as settlements90 locations ranging from local youthclubs to animal farms, repair shops andskate parks.
  12. 12. 3. We focus on doingconcrete things.
  13. 13. Youth work is not a service.Young people are not our customers.Freedom, wellbeing and democracyare all active states of being.Freedom to, not only fromDemocracy is a possibility to act, not a stateof affairs worth celebrating.Wellbeing is builtin joint activities with others.A Good Society Is A Societyof Action
  14. 14. 4. Society is made ofme and the others.
  15. 15. Political questions are far too seriousto be left for professionals.- Hannah Arendt (Vita Activa)
  16. 16. Our goal in Ruuti (gunpowder),, is that inthe future all young people have annually anexperience of democracy.
  17. 17. Ruuti Budget: for the first time in Helsinki´s historyyoung people in two areas decide on our work andspending for 2014.
  18. 18. Main daily writes on Ruuti:Metro elevators smell like urine.
  19. 19. Main dailywrites onRuuti:Morepaintingsurface tothe city.
  20. 20. Public interventionsare meaningful onlywhen they strengthenpeople s relationshipsto other beings.People s joint actionsought to have an impacton the system.People need to have thecapabilities to run their own livesand play a meaningful role inthe lives of others.The default approach of thepublic sector ought to be help.
  21. 21. Tommi LaitioDirectorCity of Helsinki, Youth DepartmentHietaniemenkatu 9BPO BOX 5000, 00099 CITY OF HELSINKI(09) 310 89045tommi.laitio (a) hel.fitommilaitio.munstadi.fitwitter: tommilaitio