Empowering youth workers for inclusive and ecological participation of NEETs youngsters
Empowering youth workers for inclusive and ecological participation of NEETs youngsters
Erasmus+ Training Course: 5th March- 10th March 2023, Madrid Spain
EKO is happy to announce that one more awesome training course has been successfully completed. The project took place in Madrid, Spain. In this project 24 youth workers from different countries gathered to learn about ecological participation of NEETs. The project was implemented from 5th of March till 10th of March 2023 by the host organization YouthProAktiv and participants from 7 more countries including: Greece, Georgia, North Macedonia, Albania, Slovenia, Serbia and Romania. The training based on non-formal education activities was planned in order to meet the needs faced by youth workers through youth work entrepreneurial experience.
The main objectives of this project were:
- – Support youth workers in identifying the right Erasmus+ actions and tools which they can use for better inclusion of NEET in EU decision-making processes.
- – Increase youth workers’ practical knowledge of applying and managing KA3 projects, and improving their understanding of European values (such as equality and inclusion).
- – Increasing the quality of youth work by equipping youth workers with better knowledge, skills, and competencies to develop & implement quality transnational projects for the inclusion of NEETs into the policy field.
The specific objectives of the project were:
- – Better understand the new Erasmus+ program 2021-2027
- – Foster debate around topics centered on the themes and priorities set under the EU Youth Strategy, in particular with regards to the Youth Goals and its dialogue mechanisms and youth green positive impact.
- – Increase youth workers’ awareness of the specific needs of NEETs- Introduce youth workers to innovative non-formal methodologies and working methods to engage NEETs in policy-making discussions.
- – Foster a stronger sense of partnerships between participating organizations and increasing their ability to operate transnationally and in cooperation with international partners for better engagement of European youngsters into EUdecision-making processes
ACTIVITIES DURING THE PROJECT
Our first initial session has been an introduction to the main training objectives and learning outcomes, facilitated by Marina Angerri. Participants have been able to have a clearer picture of what we are going to cover throughout the week and what they can expect from the project.
Afterwards, Paloma Cantero, expert on project writing and CEO of YouthProAktiv, has given a really interesting introductory session on Erasmus+. Participants have had multiple practical exercises in which they have developed fruitful content regarding the Inclusion and Diversity Strategy and EU policy framework for youth.
We have followed our schedule with Marina, with her presentation on “Understanding the youth policy framework of the European Union”, specifically focusing on the EU Youth Strategy and the EU Youth Dialogue.
After lunch, we have activated again our participants with an icebreaker, facilitated by Francesco Tognoni. They have had the opportunity to get to know their backgrounds better and exchange their experiences as youth workers. We have finialized our day with a powerful motivational speech by a manager of a Spanish organization.
Our second day of training started with a language exchange as an icebreaker. Participants were activated through the challenge of memorizing and repeating words in different languages (under the topic of NEETs).
After the warm-up, we started with a presentation on the 11 EU Youth Goals, facilitated by Francesco Tognoni. Participants were able to discover/increase their knowledge on the goals and how to approach them when desgining EU projects. The presentation was followed by a World Café session, were participants discussed among each other the necessity of these goals when planning their organizational actions.
The program followed with a Motivational Speech from SCI Madrid, facilitated by María and Madalena. It was really empowering to get to know their actions, their experience in the field, and the volunteering opportunities that youth have access to. After the speech by SCI madrid, we closed the morning with an enriching walking debate where participants had the opportunity to exchange insights on the diversity of NEETs and their challenges.
After lunch, our expert on project writing and CEO of YouthProAktiv gave an interactive session on the Erasmus+ KA3 Action, followed by three practical exercises that participants had to develop in groups. It was empowering to work in groups formed with different backgrounds and experiences. The participants did an amazing job! We are soon going to share the content they developed… Keep updated!:)
The second session of the afternoon was conducted by the participants, since they had to present the best practices of their sending organizations and to give feedback on the others. Finally, to wrap up the day, we finished with a reflection exercise in which participants had to write down: something they learnt, something they were proud of, and something that surprised them. All the results of the feedback were very positive and fruitful!
Our third day of training has started with icebreaker under the topic of Inclusion and Diversity. Participants have learnt the difference between both words and their applicability. It has been really interesting to discover their insights.
Afterwards, Paloma Cantero, expert in project writing and CEO of YouthProAktiv, has started the day with an interactive presentation about the KA3 Eramus+ Project Cycle. Following this session, participants have received multiple TIPS & TRICKS about how to write a KA3 and make it successful and impactful (evaluation criteria, objectives and purposes, methodologies, processes…). It has been an intense morning with a lot of content and important information, and participants have been really participative astking questions and actively engaged with the sessions.
After lunch, participants have continued their exchange of best practices with the presentations about their sending organizations. It has been really interesting to discover and feel empowered by other organization’s projects and initatives! The networking has been enriching and fruitful. Our expert Paloma has also given some feedback on the concept notes for KA3 projects that the participants prepared for the training. Thanks to it, their projects now have a clearer purpose and a better defined strategy and purpose.
Finally, to wrap up the day and celebrate Women’s Day, participants have finished with a reflection exercise through quotes. Participants have written down two quotes regarding women’s empowerment and two quotes about youth empowerment. The exercise has been really insightful!
Our fourth day of training has started with the entretaining icebreaker “Categories”. It has been an effective way of activating participants and the group dynamics. Afterwards, we have discussed the finale version of the KA3 concept notes for each participating organization. Participants have been able to give feedback and exchange insights with recommendations and tips. It has helped the project proposals to have alternative perspectives, really useful!
To ensure that the formation of the Consortiums was meaningful and beneficial for all, participants reflect on the strenghts that their organization could offer to each project, and the opportunties that each project could provide to them. Hence, after the reflection exercise, the participants were divided in different groups with specific KA3 project propoals.
The rest of the training day consisted on the Workshop “Let’s design and inclusive and ecological KA3 Project”. Participants had the opportunity to exchange ideas, receive feedback, and share insights regarding their project proposals while also creating real Consortiums for future KA3 projects.
After lunch, the Workshop kept going! Participants continued with the design and writing of the KA3 project while keeping in mind the different criteria and official templates that are requied for its application. It was a really empowering day because of the exchange of perspectives and the formation of Consortiums among the participating oragnizations. This will help with the sustainability of our networking and the internationalization of our partner organizations!
END of Project
The project was an unforgettable experience that enabled Greek participants to develop themselves, both individually and collectively and helped them to establish themselves as active participants in public life. Georgia, Marios and Anthi were the members of the Greek team whom we really wanna thank for all their contribution and collaboration throughout the project!
As EKO, we are also very grateful for that amazing opportunity given to the Greek team and we thank our partner Paloma Cantero, as well as Francesco Tognoni and Marina de Angelis (the rest members of the hosting organization YouthProActiv), for all their hard work and for creating such an impactful project!