Niolon Train Station, Destination Integration !

Training Project for Residential and Professional Autonomy

Vocational training in the catering services and tourist reception, as well as in the sale of local products and of ecologically grown produce.

For almost two years now, the T’Cap21 association has devoted itself to an innovative project furthering social inclusion, and which aspires to bring a majestic edifice back to life on the Côte Bleue (Blue Coast) : the Niolon Train Station.
It is there that the T’cap21 association wishes to develop a comprehensive project centered around personal and professional training in a mainstream environment :

  • Training in residential autonomy
  • Training in various trades in the tourism and catering services
  • Training in organic gardening and permaculture
  • Cultural, creative, and sports workshops

An innovative project focused on inclusion and employment

This large innovative project focused on inclusion and employment for our young adults with mental disabilities desiring a real life-plan, will offer professional training in a mainstream environment, as well as a place to refine skills for a more autonomous life- all in an idyllic setting.

Residential and professional autonomy is an aspiration for disabled people who have acquired a certain level of autonomy in everyday life. This project offers them an alternative to precarious housing solutions, and the possibility of an agreeable social life in a mainstream environment. Our work is directed at having the abilities and capacities of people with Down’s syndrome recognized.

The goal is to offer young people with mental disabilities a real springboard to the more inclusive life they are calling for.

The objectives of the project

Build a multi-dimensional business centered around a café & guest rooms

Conducted by young apprentices with disabilities
Can live on site
Paid for their work
Mainstream environment, associating different publics

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Professional and residential autonomy

Spread the model throughout France

Currently :
a project under construction in the Bouches-du-Rhône
Tomorrow : dissemination of the model throughout the country

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Development of residential and professional autonomy at the national level

Create parents' collectives throughout France

Currently : a group of parents established locally, a local association
Tomorrow : parents’ groups all over France,
the T’CAP 21 association in place throughout the country

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Large-scale initiatives

A unique establishment in the SOUTHERN region of France

A majestic edifice on the Côte Bleue

Multi-use meeting place

  • A tourist site
  • An intermediary space mixing different publics
  • Possibilities for cultural, creative, and sporting activities in a mainstream environment
  • An innovative and multifunctional center

Eco-tourism and re-investment of a heritage site

  • Restoration and re-valorizing of an emblematic edifice on the Côte Bleue
  • Development of responsible tourism
  • Promotion of the Region
  • Disability awareness

Residential autonomy

  • This responds to the wish expressed by people with disabilities who have acquired sufficient autonomy- meaning independence in terms of transportation, and the ability to communicate regardless of the perceived “level”.
  • Residential autonomy is also an alternative to current solutions for aging people with disabilities because, to date, only specialized establishments can take over, thus shutting away and distancing these people from society. -Access to residential autonomy requires step-by-step preparation: guided experimentation in everyday situations will be offered to the adolescents and young adults with Down’s Syndrome in a pedagogical apartment. Managed by an educational team in association with a specialized establishment, the apartment will serve as a framework for the training in residential autonomy indispensable to a comprehensive life plan for an individual or couple.

Vocational training in the service, tourism, and ecological agriculture sectors

The objective is to acquire practical training to gain access to an “ordinary” job offered by so-called “normal” companies, and free these from any constraints linked to a permanent dependence on differently-abled-employee programs, which can be costly. The training will be based on several learnable skills :

  • Apprenticeship in the catering service at hand : a Café/Gourmet-shop along the lines of a “Joyous Café” : reception, restaurant service, production and sale of organic breads and culinary specialties, inventory management, payment collection, and maintenance of the premises : Open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
    (depending on the season).
  • Practical courses in ecological farming : maintenance of outdoor areas with the goal of creating a vegetable garden respecting seasonality and ecological methods, which will be cultivated throughout the year.
  • Training in various professions for tourist reception : advice and guiding for tour sites in the Côte Bleue (creation of themed hikes such as discovering the Rove goats and Brousse cheese, or a visit to the historic sites of the Côte Bleue) ; sharing the history of the area’s railway at a permanent exhibition in the station hall dedicated to the centenary of the railway line…
  • Help in the acquisition of cross-functional skills useful in carrying out the personal project : management of a budget and other administrative tasks using IT.

These training programs will lead to formal validation of the knowledge acquired by approved training organizations (such as the CFA R (The Regional Training Center for Apprentices), or by the OPCO (National Competency Coaches) upon course completion, and tailored mentoring with the aim of long-term employment in an ordinary setting.

The DIRRECTE (Regional Department of Enterprise, Competition, Consumer Affairs, Labour and Employment), the “Graines de Soleil” (Sun Seeds) integration project, as well as the AGEFIPH (National Association of the Management of Funds for the Professional Insertion of Disabled People), are committed partners who will
accompany us throughout the construction of our innovative project.

Beneficiaries

  • People with Down’s Syndrome or other mental disabilities; from the age of 18; from all regions of France; and having a life-plan centered on social inclusion in a mainstream environment.
  • Young able-bodied adults in a situation of social disengagement, who wish to work with our young people to promote diversity and change mentalities regarding cognitive disability.

Partners