Joan is a young man currently completing a sentence at the Youth Detention Centre of Catalonia. Every week, he is attending a two-hour session with FC Barcelona Lassa's One Team program.
At the start of the program, he quickly lost motivation during the basketball sessions because - as a very proficient player - he did not find them sufficiently challenging. He occasionally pulled out of the activities without giving any explanation, creating a bad atmosphere within the group.
Little by little, however, Barca's One Team coaches were able to talk with Joan, asking him to reflect upon and understand the objectives of the program. This resulted in a very positive change of attitude, allowing Joan to make use of his basketball skills and knowledge to the benefit of both the group and himself.
Marta Piqué, one of the One Team coaches for the club, believes Joan's experiences with One Team will be very helpful to his life in general, saying: "Joan is evolving and improving with every session. He is learning social skills like communication, empathy and respect for others, and also acquiring new skills such as creating and organising sessions for One Team meetings.
"Joan can now help his friends improve in different aspects, and above all he has learned to respect each activity. This progressive and stable change made us think of offering him the development of a work plan which could be useful in his future work search.
"Although only one month has passed since the firm proposal of starting the work plan, he has fulfilled all the tasks entrusted to him on a weekly basis, even when there was no One Team session. The work plan is revised according to his attitude and the different tasks in the sessions, as well as his achievements within them.
"When Joan completes the work plan he will be rewarded by the presentation of a certificate from the Barça Foundation as recognition his hard work, which could be useful in his future search for employment."
Barca is working over a nine-month period with 20 young men like Joan from the Youth Detention Centre of Catalonia, using basketball as a tool for weekly training sessions that promote initiative, responsibility, respect, the importance of following rules and other valuable lessons for future employability.
One Team, supported by Turkish Airlines as the One Team Founding Patron and with the collaboration of Special Olympics as Proud Partner, uses basketball to achieve meaningful social impact in our communities across Europe and is supported by every club in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague and 7DAYS EuroCup.
Since its founding in 2012, the One Team program has already helped more than 16,000 participants through its various team-focused projects.