The Campaign “Inclusion Express” was launched in 2014 and was the red thread of Youth Express Network activities for 2015 with the will to empower young people to become social inclusion activists in the society. The Campaign goes on in 2016 and aims to target young people in Europe to be included and take part in fighting for youth social rights.
This campaign is based on the observation that even if social rights and social inclusion of youth are mentioned in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention of the Rights of the Child, the European Convention of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedom or the European Social Charter, young people don’t know these legal documents well enough to be able defend their rights. As a consequence, ignoring their own rights and the rights of others, the risk is too high that young people turn to discriminate and be discriminated.
With this campaign we want to involve them, youth organizations, youth workers, social workers and decision-makers to work on these issues together.
The Campaign “Inclusion Express” uses youth work and non-formal education methodology to raise awareness, educate and advocate for social inclusion of youth. This campaign has an online platform that uses free internet tools to reach out young people with fewer opportunities, youth workers, social workers, professionals working with youth and other stake-holders involved in social rights and social inclusion on local, regional, national and European levels. The Campaign uses also a creative and a free youth-friendly methodology in working with target group off line such as trainings, seminars, workshops, and street actions across Europe.
Etymologically, “campaign” comes from the military vocabulary and means “operation of an army in the field, preparing before the battle”. The extension of the meaning leads today to “electoral campaigns” (political activity before an election, marked by organized action in influencing the voters) or “marketing campaign” (promotion of a product through different media).
But for us in Y-E-N, campaigning is to get society from where it is to where you want it to be. This is to show people why change is needed, how things can be changed for good. In short, to get from them a positive reaction. Campaigning is persuading.
This campaign aims at raising awareness about the situation of socially excluded young people, advocating and lobbying for their inclusion and striving the society to take concrete actions towards this goal. We want to persuade European member states and local institutions that it is worth investing in social inclusion of young people because it benefits in the end to the whole society. No to do so would costs much more and would have dreadful consequences.
“There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.”
- To raise awareness (online and offline) on the importance of social inclusion of youth and respect of youth social rights
- To raise awareness on the impact of youth work as a tool to actively promote social inclusion
- To support young people and youth/social workers in standing up for social inclusion
- To empower young people in vulnerable situations to express themselves and take action to find their place in the society
- To mobilize, associate, to prepare and train activists to join the online campaign and to do local actions offline
- To advocate for policy changes regarding social inclusion at local and European levels;
- To evaluate and acknowledge youth participation in defending youth social rights
ACTIVITIES WHERE YOU CAN JOIN US:
Online: platform, Facebook page, website
Offline: meetings / seminars /local and regional actions
As offline activities, Y-E-N organised 3 support measures in 2015:
- a seminar in BRCKO, Bosnia and Herzegovina in April 2015 to “launch” our campaign and to take a snapshot of the present situation regarding this campaign: Where are we? Where do we want to go (aim)? How to get there (objectives)? What is the best way (strategy) and how to develop campaign tools (message, slogan, leaflets, posters, trailers, website and Facebook Page and Groups, photo gallery, promotional material and press toolkit);
- a training for trainers in MILCOVENI, Romania in July 2015 to develop competencies for campaign activists and to strengthen their capacity to prepare and carry out European and local educational activities about inclusion of young people with fewer opportunities;
- a mobile evaluation in STRASBOURG (France) and BRUSSELS (Belgium) including final conferences to present our results to other youth NGOs, policy-makers, stake-holders in November 2015. It aimed at evaluating the implementation of follow-up activities of the campaign at local levels and the overall campaign at European level. For this, we chose to travel from STRASBOURG to BRUSSELS, in order to reach out more and unite by train the 2 European capital cities.
A Rapporteur (the same person each time) attended all 3 activities and compiled best practices/definitions to make a toolbox (“How to campaign for social inclusion at local & European levels?”).
HOW TO JOIN THE CAMPAIGN?
Join us on the online platform by commenting, posting, blogging, sharing etc.
Or start a local action and tell us about it!
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