The Giorgio Deiana Foundation proudly supports the Autism and Digital Technologies project, a collaborative effort by Il Sole Dentro Alessandria, Abilitando Onlus, and the University of Eastern Piedmont of Alessandria, in partnership with A.I.A.S. Alessandria A.P.S. Geared towards teenagers with autism spectrum disorders, the project focuses on inclusive teaching and training, preparing them for potential integration into the workforce.

Young people with autism exhibit a natural aptitude for information technologies, and the computer’s predictable, non-judgmental, and repetitive nature creates an optimal learning environment for them. Recognizing the potential of digital tools in supporting cognitive, linguistic, and social development, the project aims to leverage technology for ambitious educational objectives, promoting visuospatial skills, attention, and reactivity.

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The “Pilot Project” involved 17 teenagers aged 15 to 18, concluding in July 2023. Identification and grouping were based on abilities, and participants attended two hours of weekly lessons at the University’s Department of Science and Technological Innovation (DiSIT). The project analyzed strengths and weaknesses, forming a cohesive working group of tutors and educators.
Building on the successful pilot, the final project spans approximately six months, catering to 20-25 students with two hours of weekly lessons. The educational approach, forming homogeneous groups, remains consistent, overseen by a DiSIT teacher coordinating tutors and educators.
Beyond student lessons, the project incorporates update meetings, discussions with support teachers, and return meetings with families. A final shared study, summarizing the experience and results, is planned, alongside new initiatives like collaboration with the School of Robotics of Genoa.
In the second year, a specific path for students with identified soft skills is introduced, aligning cognitive advantages with industry needs. These skills, such as attention to detail and systematic analysis, are valued in the technology sector. Collaboration with computer scientists aims to enhance these skills for entry into the workforce.

The project’s innovation lies in its unique approach:

– The personalized teaching program caters to individual aptitudes and abilities, providing valuable flexibility.
– The presence of a tutor and educator ensures a protective environment, maximizing stimuli and learning.
– University involvement reflects the highest level of professionalism, fostering social inclusion.

Further objectives include extending the project’s success to other universities and associations, collaborating with companies for workforce entry, integrating the experience into school programs, and creating a team to discuss and improve educational approaches.
Support from foundations, companies, and private donations underscores the project’s significance. The Giorgio Deiana Foundation expressed the desire to give continuity to the support of the project. The initiative enjoys sponsorship from the VIVA Foundation, comprising Confindustria Alessandria, the Slala Foundation, and the Mani Intelligenti Foundation. With ongoing backing, the project aspires to lead an inclusive and innovative educational movement, extending its impact across Piedmont and the national territory.