On October 6, the ACAY Marseille team was honored to participate in a significant event organized by the health teams of the youth prison at the Alcazar library in Marseille. The Director and an ACAY ambassador described the day as “a star in the dark night,” emphasizing the importance of such collaborative efforts. This article is part of ACAY’s December 2023 newsletter.
On October 6, the ACAY Marseille team was honored to participate in a significant event organized by the health teams of the youth prison at the Alcazar library in Marseille. The day brought together various influential figures, including Boris Cyrulnik (neuropsychiatrist), Eric Mangin (Vice-President in charge of juvenile court duties at the Marseilles Court of Justice), and Philippe Pujol (writer and journalist), shedding light on factors contributing to delinquency and exploring ways to assist youth in rebuilding their lives during their time in prison.
The Director and an ACAY ambassador described the day as “a star in the dark night,” emphasizing the importance of such collaborative efforts. Boris Cyrulnik shared his insights on the critical role of attachment in a child’s psychological development. He stressed the significance of a secure attachment, highlighting how a child who feels loved and supported by parental figures develops healthy emotional and social skills and a capacity for resilience. ACAY’s mission aligns with this approach, focusing on helping youth verbalize their experiences and fostering psychosocial skills.
Philippe Pujol, author of “La Fabrique du monstre” and “French Deconnection,” delved into the complex realities of urban life in Marseille. He provided a vivid account of the construction and international forces behind drug networks, shedding light on the recruitment stages and the pressures that lead youth into what he termed as “slavery.”
A powerful testimony was shared by Idrisse, a former ACAY youth who has successfully transitioned into a salaried employee. His narrative of hope and ACAY’s impactful pedagogical approach, presented alongside Director Laurent, resonated with 200 prison professionals. Sylvie Brollo, the psychologist at the juvenile prison, described Idrisse’s story as “a star in the dark night,” acknowledging his courage and mental strength as an inspiration for both professionals and inmates. She emphasized that Idrisse’s journey serves as undeniable proof that transformation is possible.
“Idrisse’s story appeared like a star in the dark night. His courage and mental strength are an example for everyone, professionals and inmates alike. It’s undeniable proof that anything is possible in life,” Sylvie said.
Madame Mongey, Idrisse’s educator when he was a minor, also attended the conference and expressed gratitude for ACAY’s continuous educational care. She highlighted Idrisse’s remarkable transformation and commended ACAY for its commitment to collaborative efforts with operational partners, stressing the importance of working together to facilitate the reintegration of youth. In essence, ACAY’s approach relies on partnerships to provide comprehensive care, contributing to the positive reintegration of young individuals into society.
Indeed, ACAY relies on collaborative work with its operational partners to promote comprehensive care for the youth, leading to better reintegration.