Workforce development in music and at the water's edge

What could be more fun that a riverside cafe to enter the world of work? In Périgueux, an association offers psychically handicapped youths a first job on the banks of the Isle.

Social and Employment

Périgueux, Dordogne, France

Francine Pascaud and Patricia Bresson

20 000 € to the Selection Committee at 2007/05/22

Project leader


"The project coordinators managed to persuade a host of volunteers, Les Amis de la guinguette, who, by pooling their efforts with those of the permanent staff of Alpéa, are enabling the adolescents to manage their handicaps and also to prevent excesses."

Francine Pascaud and Patricia Bresson

At Trélissac, in the Périgueux suburbs, the Association laïque du Périgord pour l'éducation des adolescents (Alpéa) accompanies youths aged from 14 to 20 who display behavioural problems. Hampered by the psychic handicap, they are unable to follow a conventional school or professional career, but having reached working age, no longer receive aid from the State employment aid structures. To offer them a professional job and help them integrate later on in the world of work, Alpéa has designed an original project.

A party of friends

On the banks of the Isle, along the promenade passing through the Périgueux built-up area which has been rearranged for pedestrians, cyclists and rollerbladers, Alpéa wants to open a riverside café.

An ideal meeting place, it will offer food (brasserie menu, ice cream, crepes) and will rent out canoes and bicycles. It will also organize tea dances on Sundays and some festive events in the evenings.

As an immediate outlet for the psychically handicapped youths, this riverside café will also become a venue for training apprentices in the catering trades, alongside a specialized agency.

Another novel feature: to guarantee satisfactory integration of the youths in difficulty, Alpéa has drawn together a pool of sympathizers around its initiative: les Amis de la guinguette. Architects, musicians, pharmacists, retirees, graphic artists, horticulturists, and teachers, have already agreed to accompany the project by offering their time and knowhow free of charge. Alongside other large private and public sponsors, the Veolia Foundation is in turn investing in this riverside café, to open since June 2007.