This is the fifth activity on social inclusion. This activity can be used for reflection. You can find more activities on social inclusion here.


60 minutes


Between 4 and 16 participants.




The facilitator will introduce the topic by saying:

There are 3 different types of attitudes that adults have towards young people and those attitudes determine to what degree adults are willing to involve young people in social settings (associations, jobs, development and implementation of projects).

The three attitudes towards young people:

1.As objects

2 as receivers

3.As colleagues.

  1. Young people as objects: Adults who take this attitude identify with the myth of adult wisdom. They think they know what is best for young people. They try to control the situations in which young people find themselves. They believe that young people have little to contribute. They feel the need, according to their own past experiences, to protect young people from making mistakes and suffering as a result. They allow only a symbolic participation of young people and have no intention of truly involving young people.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
  2. Young people as receivers: Adults who take this attitude believe that adults should help young people to adapt to an adult society. They allow young people to take part in decision making because they believe the experience will help them and they assume that young people are not yet “real people” and need help to “think like adults.” These adults usually delegate trivial responsibilities or tasks who themselves do not want to carry out. Adults who see young people as recipients generally determine the ways in which young people will participate and expect them to conform to their terms.
  3. Young people as colleagues: Adults who take this attitude sincerely respect young people and believe that they have much to offer now. These adults encourage young people to participate and believe that the involvement of young people is a critical element for the success of the programs. These adults agree that young people have a voice like them in decision making. They recognize that both adults and young people have skills, strengths and experiences to contribute. Adults who take this attitude will be as comfortable working with young people as with adults and enjoy an environment with both. These adults believe that genuine participation of young people enriches adults in the same way that adult participation enriches young people, and that a mutual relationship of respect recognizes the strengths each can offer.


This activity promotes social inclusion by allowing the participants to recognize and relate their life experiences and situations to those around them, thus creating solidarity and unity.


  • Raise awareness about the different styles of relating to young people, adults have towards young people.
  • Empathize with the difficulties that a young person who has experienced exclusion might live through when interacting with adults.
  • Identify those styles in everyday life situations.
  • Identify reaction modes to promote the attitude of equals.


The facilitator will present to the large group the 3 different types of attitudes that adults have towards young people.

The facilitator will separate the group into pairs and ask them to look for 3 situations they have faced in their lives that reflect these 3 attitudes. In each couple one will be the adult and the other the young person.

Each couple will show their 3 impros to the large group and the observer group must identify the attitudinal styles.

After all couples have shown their impros, the facilitator will put together groups of 4 participants to reflect, identify and name what a young person can do to lead adult relationships towards the attitude of “Colleagues.”


  • What feelings awakens in you in relation to each attitude style?
  • What do you think a young person who has experienced social exclusion can feel towards adults?
  • What concrete actions could you implement, in your day to day, so that the attitude is that of “Colleagues”?