Bridging the Gap
The Belgian Red Cross and CEBaP developed an evidence-based guideline for the ‘Bridging the Gap’ project in Flanders. In this ongoing project, Belgian Red Cross volunteers join the teaching staff in schools in order to improve personal development goals in at-risk children with poor performance. Dorpsplein13 facilitated the guideline development procedure and led discussions between experiential experts from the school communities in Brussels, governmental departments and Red Cross volunteers with the scientific team from CEBaP. The guideline helps the different stakeholders to choose between different didactical approaches for supporting these children and emphasizes those that have been proved to be effective.
Fourteen specific activities that may increase knowledge, skills, attitudes or mental wellbeing in toddlers and primary school children (e.g. playing board games, doing jigsaws, reading books with a child) were discussed. We also included broader types of interventions such as stimulating parental involvement, stimulating the use of native language and creating “warm relations” into the process. The expert panel assessed the applicability and meaningfulness of effective activities found in the literature, keeping in mind the challenges and opportunities provided by the specific context of the multicultural and metropolitan city Brussels. The full guideline can be consulted here (content in Dutch).