Youth in Action Programme: develop a project in Europe
Description of the Youth in Action programme
As the Lifelong Learning Programme, Youth in Action is primarily directed to young Europeans. The program aims to develop the sense of European citizenship and the youth cooperation among its population by fostering the cultural exchange and dialogue in order to give an active role the youth citizens in the shaping of Europe. In this program the intercultural dialogue and the non-formal learning are emphasized as a tool for the acquisition of multiple competences. The program aspires to develop the sense of “solidarity and tolerance among young Europeans”. In the Youth in Action Programme, youth are invited to have a proactive attitude towards themes of society, everyone is given the possibility to inter-act and have an influence on a project, according to its own capacities, skills and knowledge. Therefore, the youth are able to gain a certain approach of problems and develop an attitude towards those rather than a specific set of technical skills.
Who is concerned by the Youth in Action Programme?
According to the official presentation of the programme, Youth in Action is anti-discriminatory. No criterion of cultural and social background are required: the programme has been made as a maximum of persons would be able to access regardless their education or their social environment. In other words, the selection of the participants should not be made by the promoters according to the social position or skills of the applicant neither or its educational level or languages spoken. Also, no social obstacle of any type such as disabilities, social orientation, religion, ethnicity, drugs or alcohol addicts, orphans, … must be taken in consideration by the promoters. The programme Youth in Action aims accessibility to reach a maximum of persons and give the same chance of personal development and involvement into society to all. The only requirement is to be included in the range of age for an action given and to find yourself a project.
How does the Youth in Action programme work?
All along the year, “calls for proposals” are made by what is called promoters (foundations, associations, NGOs, personal project). Once a project proposal is accepted, the participants are aware of those propositions as they are published and accessible to all. A protection of the participants is ensured by the programme, physically as they receive a full insure covering the majority of the incidents that would unfortunately happen but also mentally. Indeed, one of the main principles of the programme act against all form of inappropriate behavior such as mental and sexual harassment but also cultural, integration or any kind of problem the participant could encounter during the project.
What does a project within the Youth in Action programme take in consideration?
The projects gives the possibility to youth European to reflect upon common values with its peers from other countries and cultures. Also, the program should demonstrate to the youth that they are not only discovering Europe but that they are an active part of its daily construction. It is important that the youth realize that they have the possibility to act on local communities (although those are geographically or culturally different from what they used to know) through projects of cooperation and development and the fact that their actions has a repercussion on a broader scale as they are taking an active part in the European society and democracy. By sharing but also learning from others having different backgrounds, facilitators are helping the youth to develop their own capacities of analysis and attitude towards contemporaneous questions of society.