20 days of celebration for 20 years of Vizit Youth Center: “Here we create a second home for young people” (Wilrijk)

20 days of celebration for 20 years of Vizit Youth Center: “Here we create a second home for young people” (Wilrijk)
20 days of celebration for 20 years of Vizit Youth Center: “Here we create a second home for young people” (Wilrijk)
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“In a nutshell, Vizit offers quality leisure activities for young people,” coordinator Sander Lambeir (31) starts. The youth center opened its doors for the first time on October 15, 2004. Even then it was a meeting place where young people could find their way in society and it still is today. “They are always welcome here to have fun or learn things recreationally. But it is more than that, the positive atmosphere is difficult to put into words,” Sander continues. In six years he grew from intern to coordinator and has been the latter for three years now.

In this way, Sander tries to help meet the needs of Wilrijk’s young people. “There is little professional youth work, even though there is a need for it, especially in the urban context. Young people need to be pulled out of their comfort zone, but because the target group is constantly changing, it is important that the counselors know what to do.” Pulling out of the comfort zone is done at Vizit in three different branches: Vizit, ViVa and BarVIZart.

Coordinator Sander Lambeir and oldest Vizit member Peter Van Herck. — © Patrick De Roo

Youth center Vizit Valaar (ViVa) attracts Wilrijk’s young people and organizes activities on squares in the area. They also offer homework guidance or help with study choices. BarVIZart is the artistic branch. They provide numerous weekly workshops in ceramics, photography, screen printing and graphics. “A few years ago, for example, they went to Pukkelpop with portable drawing tables to draw festival goers,” says administrative youth worker Raquelle Franco Marques.

Twenty days of celebration

The youth work organization will be celebrating its twentieth anniversary in April and will therefore be celebrating twenty days of celebration. The kick-off was kicked off on Tuesday evening with a festive reunion of everyone involved over the years. Someone who was more than happy to be there is the oldest member and chairman Peter Van Herck (54). He saw Vizit grow into the youth center it is today. “Over the years, the operation has become increasingly diverse, a very good achievement. Especially when you know that a large group of people have put their shoulders to the wheel.”

For Peter, Vizit is a place where young people can try things out and have the opportunity to bump into a wall every now and then. “Some learn to work with light and sound here for the first time and later find a job in stage techniques. In the Jong Versterkt project, new music bands can gain their first stage experience. In short: there is room to fail and learn from it,” says Peter.

Expo

From April 2 to 22, Vizit is organizing an exhibition about everything that has characterized the youth center over the past twenty years. And the Croquet Tower is perhaps the showpiece of this. Nona De Koninck made a silicone stack of croque monsieurs especially for the opening. “That is something recurring and connecting within Vizit. We often eat it here and have also used it for a campaign. To immortalize that, I made a mold of a stack of cheese and ham sandwiches. There is even a glow-in-the-dark version to use during parties,” Nona laughs.

(Read more below the photo)

Maarten Dils (26) learned screen printing at Vizit and started his own clothing brand with Pengoes.

Maarten Dils (26) learned screen printing at Vizit and started his own clothing brand with Pengoes. — © Patrick De Roo

You can also discover a lot of Vizit material in the exhibition, such as the original construction plans, newspaper clippings, event posters and merchandising. The clothing brand of Maarten Dils (26) also hangs in between. He started as a volunteer at Vizit in 2016 and has now been employed as a youth worker for three years. During a screen printing workshop he got the hang of it and started Pengoes. “I was always a fan of skate clothing, but it is very expensive, so I decided to print it myself. The penguin became my logo because as a student I often scribbled it on courses,” says Maarten.

For him, Vizit is a place where he could and still can be himself. “I was able to discover myself here and it is great to now be on the other side as a supervisor. The goal is to create a second home for young people and that is great to be part of,” Maarten concludes.

More information about the activities of 20 years of Vizit via the website. Here you will find more information about BarVIZart.

For the twentieth anniversary, illustrator Auwnanas created a new mural in the courtyard.

For the twentieth anniversary, illustrator Auwnanas created a new mural in the courtyard. — © Patrick De Roo

Raquelle Franco Marques is an administrative youth worker at Vizit.

Raquelle Franco Marques is an administrative youth worker at Vizit. — © Patrick De Roo

20 days of celebrations kicked off with a festive reunion.

20 days of celebrations kicked off with a festive reunion. — © Patrick De Roo

The article is in Dutch

Tags: days celebration years Vizit Youth Center create home young people Wilrijk

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