As of September 15, turning 18 in Italy will comes with a 500€ ($730 CDN) culture bonus.
In a move designed to re-introduce a dose of culture into their lives, each 18-year-old Italian citizen will receive the bonus to spend on books, concert tickets, museum visits, cinema admissions, art galleries, fairs, and trips to national parks.
Around 575,000 teenagers are expected to benefit from the plan, which will cost the Italian government €290 million.
It will benefit anyone who turned 18 or who will turn 18 this calendar year, though it won’t do much to lighten the burden of transitioning from school into a job market hovering around 40 per cent unemployment.
“This is a bonus for kids coming of age, to give them the symbolic awareness of what it means to be an adult in Italy – a main protagonist and heir of the greatest cultural heritage in the world,” said Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.
“We will not give in to terror… we have centuries of history that proclaim the fact that culture will beat ignorance, that beauty is more tenacious than barbarism,” he added for some reason.
The newly-minted adults will be able to claim the fund through an app, where they can download vouchers to their phones to use at online and physical stores.
The teens will have the entire year to spend the cash.
The Italian government will introduce a similar bonus for teachers in 2017, which will allow them to spend €500 on professional development.