“Rupture stays” to try to get “uncasable kids” out of the spirals of violence

The Pont-de-Bois high school, in Saint-Chéron (Essonne), next to the site where a teenager was stabbed to death on February 22, 2021, during a brawl between two rival gangs.  Here, February 23, 2021.

Lilibelle was only 14 years old. She died on February 22, 2021, in Saint-Chéron, Essonne, after being stabbed in the abdomen during a brawl between two rival gangs. The teenager, excluded from several schools, was the subject of an educational follow-up by a children’s judge.

She shouldn’t have been in Saint-Chéron that day. It was planned that she would be sent away from turf wars and trouble, to Senegal, Madagascar, Benin or on a boat, for a nine-month “breakaway stay”. But the Covid-19 pandemic delayed his departure. She died before “to have a chance to change the trajectory of life”, comments an educator from the child welfare services (ASE) in the Essonne department, who wishes to remain anonymous.

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A “breakaway stay”, this is what we call these programs offered to “so-called unbreakable kids”explains Saïd Bakkich, head of the supply and performance management department at the ASE de l’Essonne, which sends around ten young people each year for a stay: “These are kids that the system in France fails to take care of, neither homes, nor foster families, nor social children’s homes. » Disturbed, traumatized, unstable, often violent, out-of-school and runaway children “that we are sent as a last resort”, testifies Mourad Bebbouche, 40 years old, steward and president of Manda Spring, an association which organizes the care of young people in great difficulty, aged 13 to 21, in Madagascar. Four hundred children saw their “reverse life course” in twelve years with Manda Spring, he congratulates himself.

Nine months ten thousand kilometers from France for “exfiltrate” a dangerous, failing or outdated family environment; to get away from harmful influences, from a daily life undermined by prostitution, drug use, petty crime or even violence; to rebuild, “remobilize” ; to relearn how to get up in the morning, to respect others; to get out of his badass posture; to drop appearances, cigarettes, chips, cannabis, his mobile phone and his console.

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Nine months to get back to basics, in the village or in the bush, without comfort, without running water or electricity; to work on a humanitarian site, in the fields, the vegetable garden, on the construction of a bridge, a well, within a dispensary, a nursery; to get up to speed with daily tutoring classes; to put ” the system “ also on pause, a support system “so hard, where it’s every man for himself, where we are sent to homes and foster families, alongside the Thénardiers, they are nice, where we are presented each year to a judge for children who had nothing to do with us, remembers Mr. Bebbouche, placed at the age of 5 years. A system that threw him into the street at 19, “without being prepared for anything”.

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