How can one not love Italy? I believe everyone has two homelands; one is his own, the closest one; and the other one is Italy.
(Henryk Sienkiewicz, Nobel prize in Literature, 1905)
A LICET Schools initiative in support of Afghan refugees.
The recent arrival in Italy of refugees from Afghanistan determines the need for these people to be initially supplied with the basic wherewithal for survival and to become fully integrated in Italy, with specific attention to an adequate learning of the language of the country.
The Italian language and culture schools for foreigners LICET have, hence, decided to offer their contribution with regard to the same by awarding a series of scholarships to be conferred in conjunction with the organizations responsible for hospitality. Such financing is reserved solely for refugees coming from Afghanistan - irrespective of the individual refugee's sex.
Despite the fact that during the present pandemic courses in schools for foreigners have been decimated, admitting refugees to activated courses in each separate school entails, albeit in part, a way of helping people who deserve and have all our sympathy.
LICET (Lingua Italiana, Cultura e Turismo)
The Italian schools for foreigners in Italy are an important resource for the country, not only for the promotion of the language but also that of the culture, del tourism, del business and of the "Italian brand" around the world. These centres are, essentially, real ethical ambassadors: on the one hand, they promote the country to foreigners, and on the other, they offer Italians the immense privilege (a privilege which these Italian schools experience every day with their own students from all over the world) of being able to look at Italy through the eyes of “others”: and as such, becoming a lens through which to see how our country and its place in the world really look from the outside.
The LICET Schools (Lingua Italiana, Cultura e Turismo) Association came about through a need for individual schools to connect with each other and work together, large or small, to overcome the ‘institutional invisibility’ experienced over the last ten years by many centres whose focus is on teaching Italian and cultural tourism. Each school, while maintaining its independence and its own particular identity, is part of a vast political and cultural framework for the promotion and the spread of the Italian language and culture throughout the world.
LICET Schools sees its role therefore as that of a representative for these public institutions who have come to recognise the importance of the “cultural-traveller” and how they differ from the image of the “hit-and-run tourist”. A representative who is moved not only by the wish to ask the State for subsidies or union support other than those which are essential to survive; but above all by the desire to offer their own contribution to the cultural promotion of the country, bringing to the table their own collection of experience, relationships, talent and tenacity. A desire that can only be expressed by recognising the specific identity of Italian schools which are constantly working hard to defend and promote one of Italy’s most precious and best-loved parts of its cultural heritage: its language.
The Italian language in the world
Throughout the world, “Italy” is synonymous with a unique and priceless (the highest percentage of the world’s valuable artefacts are found in our country) cultural heritage an incredibly varied and extraordinarily beautiful natural environment (ranked among the highest countries in the world for biodiversity), an impressive history dating back millenia, an incredibly evocative enogastronomic tradition that is the envy of the world, creative originality that pushes the limits of genius, and what has come to be commonly referred to as the height of the luxury sector (fashion, cars, interior and exterior architecture, artisanal production, to name but a few).
LICET Schools is a non profit association whose purpose is to safeguard and promote the activities of the Italian schools for foreignersa critical resource for the Italian cultural prestige, for tourism, for the dissemination of knowledge of the Italian language throughout the world.The Association relies uniquely on the volountary work of the associates and on donations: with a small contribution, you can help us grow stronger and support Italian language schools in Italy.
In this article on Study Travel Magazine, the most important study abroad magazine in the world, Carlo Lipparini, Licet vice president, explains the birth of the association; the social, touristic, cultural, educational, occupational, contributory and economic importance of Italian language schools for foreigners in Italy; the aims of the association; the crisis in the sector due to the pandemic emergency; the wishes and requests of LICET member schools.
The Italian schools for foreigners are a vital, although often overlooked, resource for Italy’s tourism industry and for promoting the Italian brand. This is the topic of the last interview, released to Qui Bologna TV by Andrea Bernardoni, Vice-President of Associazione Scuole LICET – Lingua italiana, cultura e turismo.
One of the consequences of the invisibility suffered by the Italian language schools for foreigners is the very scarce presence of news concerning them directly. While for other categories (hotels, bars, restaurants, commerce in general, transport, etc.) it is not unusual to find articles or news reports that highlight the problems of the various sectors, there are very few references to the daily struggle of all the schools, centers and institution that deal with study holidays and Italian courses for foreigners.