Who are we?

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Diversa/mente is a non-profit cultural and social promotion association that has been working in the Bologna area since 2000, mainly in the field of psychological support and care for people of different linguistic and cultural origins, immigrants and children of immigrants.


The Transcultural Clinical Consultation Service is dedicated to them - individuals, adults, families, children, adolescents, mixed couples.


Other activities, which include training, supervision and psychosocial interventions in the community, are addressed to those who work in both public and private social services (cooperatives, associations, etc.) and to all those who are interested in these issues: social workers, educators, psychologists, psychiatrists, psychotherapists, anthropologists, mediators, managers, teachers, researchers, etc..


Diversa/mente is characterized as a laboratory of study and research on the migratory experience and on the ways in which we think about it and treat its sufferings, which finds applications in the clinical, social and psycho-pedagogical fields. Starting from a psychoanalytic theoretical matrix, it is inspired by contributions from transcultural psychology, ethnopsychiatry and medical and cultural anthropology.


The practice of an interdisciplinary and intercultural thought and action, characterised by a continuous critical reflection on itself, aimed at de-constructing ethnocentric and 'colonial' preconceptions and implicit notions, qualifies the projects of the working groups, which include psychologists, psychotherapists, psychoanalysts, anthropologists, cultural mediators and educators.


The fight against discrimination, the defence of the rights of foreigners, the support of their subjective and community skills and resources, the recognition of the legitimacy of different worldviews and the uniqueness of each individual: the human person with his or her rights is placed as the foundation of our project.

Diversa/mente has been registered since 2002 in the register of associations of the province of Bologna.

It is one of the associations of the Coordination of the Massimo Zonarelli Metropolitan Intercultural Centre of the Municipality of Bologna.

This picture shows three speakers at an event, including a representative of the Diversamente association.This picture shows three speakers at an event, including two representatives of the Diversamente association.This picture shows four speakers at an event, including two representatives of the Diversamente association, one of whom is speaking at the event.This image shows a Diversamente staff member preparing dishes with food at a Christmas 2019 meeting.This image shows a Diversamente staff member singing and playing guitar at a Christmas 2019 meetingThis picture shows two Diversamente staff members smiling.This image shows a group of staff chatting during the 2019 Christmas meeting of otherwiseThis picture shows two Diversamente co-workers, sitting downThis image shows the Diversamente group starting a meeting in 2019, the speaker speaks




Diversa / mente was born in July 2000, from the common interest of some psychologists, psychotherapists and pedagogists for the themes of the migratory experience and transcultural relations. They were soon joined by anthropologists and mediators


first projects had a mainly intercultural and educational value ( “The time beyond school ”, “Women's meetings ”, “Education in intercultural communication ”, “10 to 100 – immigrant women and social services ”, etc.) and the first researches were aimed at knowing the experiences and needs of migrants ( “ Migration paths for women ”, “ Foreign families and high schools ”). themes of identity, parenting and adolescence, which led to the creation of the conference “Genitoriality à, migrant adolescents and ience – constructions and practices of identities and affiliations ” and the birth of the Sportello for Adolescents of foreign origin within the 6+ Project. At the same time, interest has grown in the historical, socio-political and economic context of the countries of migration, and cycles of seminars have been organized, conducted by external experts:


geopolitical situation of the Balkans ”, “Colonialism and post-colonialism in Africa : geopolitical, social ” aspects. On a voluntary basis, a transcultural Psychological Consultation Service was then activated aimed at adult immigrants, their children, children and adolescents, couples and families who feel emotional suffering or feel they have psychological problems related to


migratory experience, to insertion into the new reality, to family relationships, to parenthood, to being children, to reuniting. The work with groups of foreign women, in particular Nigerian women, and the collection of their stories, characterized by traumatic events related to many forms of violence, not only physical, including the removal of children, has motivated us to explore the issue of rights. of foreign minors, through an in-depth interdisciplinary study. This research has allowed us to realize the Children's Day. The best interests of the child and the protection of identity in cross-cultural contexts ” (2011). To complete the study, we then conducted an exploratory survey on the perception of the interventions of taking charge


the services by some foreign families, the results of which were presented the year following the meeting. ’help ”. In all these years of activity, the interest in the theoretical and methodological aspects of cross-cultural psychological consultation has been strengthened and directed more and more towards the exploration of the deepest links between the psyche and culture. From our experience the training course “Psiche e Cultura was born. Contributions for an ethno-psychiatric reading of the suffering of migrants ”. In the

meantime, our psychological support activity has developed, through the referral to the clinical group of individual patients and family groups, and support for parenting. Since 2014, the Transcultural Psychological Consultation Service has also been following asylum seekers, in collaboration with associations, public services and reception centers in the territory of the Metropolitan City of Bologna. In recent years Diversa / mente has deepened the multidisciplinary dialogue for coexistence in cross-cultural contexts, focusing on the protection of Human Rights in their cultural diversity.



In order to work in transcultural aid contexts, we believe it is necessary to adopt specific theoretical and methodological (operational) tools, which take into account both the cultural representations within which the person is constituted, and the issues related to broader changes and conflicts of a political, economic and social nature.

Our systems of interpretation and treatment must therefore be revised, in order to create devices capable of reconstructing the thought and symbolic universe of those who benefit from our intervention, so as to avoid misinterpretation of the problems and false diagnoses.

In our experience, study, reflection and comparison within the interdisciplinary group are indispensable moments, especially in the preparation and verification phases of the interventions, useful to grasp the complexity of points of view, representations, meanings and values, referring to other symbolic universes, which are otherwise difficult to access.  In this sense, the contribution of the group's anthropologists is essential, because it allows us to develop a double reading, on the one hand psychological and on the other anthropological (complementarist) of behaviour in general and of psychic distress in particular.

Equally important is the contribution of intercultural mediators, both as narrators of their own migration experience and witnesses of lives lived in migration, and as facilitators of relationships and communication with people of the same linguistic background. In addition to assisting us in the implementation of interventions, the mediators share in the group the paths of theoretical investigation, participate in the clinical discussion of the cases treated and in the planning of psychosocial interventions.

Whenever possible, even in clinical consultation meetings, we use extended settings to favour decentralisation and understanding of the experiences of the person or families requesting our help. The situations addressed are reported and elaborated in the ethnoclinical working group.

In clinical practice, starting from the recognition of the value that the person has of his or her own symbolic and cultural belonging, it is possible to initiate and support the necessary work of internal processing of one's own experience and reconstruction of attachment ties that have been interrupted, broken or lost following the change and the process of adaptation to a new and different cultural environment, and consequently reactivate the capacity for autonomous and authentic representation of oneself in the world.

In supporting people in this process, an important part consists in helping them to find resources and skills, keeping in mind that this always takes place in a context that is neither neutral nor equal, but rather full of heavy historical and political legacies, influential social structures and economic laws that regulate migration.



President: Filomena Cillo, cultural anthropologist, is coordinator of the Diversa/mente Socio-Educational Interventions on the Territory Group.  She obtained a specialisation in integrated communication in the field of Paediatric Palliative Care at the Academy of Sciences of Palliative Medicine in Bologna. She collaborates with the Scalo Mental Health Centre, participating in clinical interviews with patients of both foreign and Italian origin, and is part of the Gruppo Devereux team at Ausl Bologna. She collaborates with the association Next Generation Italy on issues concerning the construction and renegotiation of the identities of the new generations.


Vice-president: Renata Alexandre Lins, psychologist and individual and group psychotherapist. As a freelancer, she provides psychological consultations and psychoanalytical psychotherapy for adults and adolescents, couples and families. She has been working in clinical and institutional settings since 2002, initially in Brazil and since 2019 she has refounded her practice in Bologna. In parallel to her private practice path, she has worked in numerous psychosocial contexts, in the field of mental health, with people presenting severe mental suffering. Since 2018, she has collaborated with the Diversa/mente Association, participating in the Clinical Group and the Training Group.


Treasurer: Andrea Distefano


Group coordinators:


Patrizia Brunori, with delegation to the Clinical Working Group, psychologist and psychotherapist, carries out her professional activity in Bologna in psychoanalytic psychotherapy with adults, couples and adolescents, group psychoanalysis and experiential groups. She is also involved in institutional training with supervision groups and experiential training groups. He is a member of the Italian Institute of Group Psychoanalysis, a member of the European Federation for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy in Health and related Public Services, and a lecturer in the Master in Human Rights, Migration and Development, University of Bologna, Ravenna campus.


Gustavo Gozzi, is full professor of History of Political Doctrines and lecturer in "Human Rights and History of International Law" and "Multiculturalism and Cultural Relativism" in the School of Political Sciences at the University of Bologna, where he is currently Alma Mater Professor.

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