Action Day #12: Preventing all forms of Violence

To celebrate our 25th year acting and networking towards Social Inclusion of Young People, we wanted to put a spotlight on some of the ENTER Recommendation, a tool we often use to teach Young People about the Access of Social Rights.

ENTER Recommendation #12:
Preventing Violence

Young people coming from disadvantaged neighbourhoods are often both victims and perpetrators of violence, inside and outside of their homes. These violences can take various forms. They create a climate of fear and fuel prejudice and discrimination against Youth. One part of the ENTER Recommendation focuses specifically on preventing all forms of violence in disadvantaged neighbourhoods.

To demonstrate that it CAN be done, we put in this article 2 examples of projects done by our Member organisations that aim at preventing different kinds of Violence.

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Proni Center for Youth Development
Brcko District, Bosnia and Herzegovina – Member Organisation

“Youth Countering the Violent Extremism”

In Bosnia and Herzegovina key problems for youth are: youth passivity and isolation. As a result, young people can easily be targeted by extremist groups and movements, become radicalised trough family and their local society and then transfer those radical ideas to their peers using social medias. Our member organisation Proni and the Ministry of Civil Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina tried to tackle this issue and developed together the long-term project “Youth Countering the Violent Extremism”. The project is supported by the Embassy of the Netherlands in Bosnia and Herzegovina through the MATRA program.

This project will work directly with youth through three youth councils in BiH, and other stakeholders to produce tools and mechanisms that will directly influence the decision-makers of Bosnia and Herzegovina in order to modernise and update the legislations and respond on violent extremism challenges in the digital world. This will prevent Youth from being an easy target for extremist ideas and organisations that are using the digital world (specially social media) to reach and recruit new members amongst youth.

One of the main event, a conference called “Youth against Violent Extremism”, was held in Sarajevo, in June 2018. It was attended by over 80 participants from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, the Netherlands, Portugal, USA. The audience shared mutual international experiences in preventing violent extremism, as well as regional and Bosnian experience. Two researches on the attitudes of young people in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Croatia were presented.

Besides this conference, the partners of the project have already conducted researches on youth attitudes towards radicalisation, created an info web page ( (meaning: and implemented the first of three trainings for youth council representatives to disseminate knowledge on means of prevention and lobbying against violence.

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United Societies of Balkans
Thessaloniki, Greece – Member Organisation

“React-Act-Prevent Sexual Violence
Through Youth Work”

Sexual violence is considered among the most serious social problems, occurring against any person, regardless gender, age, race at any place, at any time. To tackle this issue, our member organisation United Societies of Balkans developed the project “React-Act-Prevent Sexual Violence Through Youth Work“. It will be implemented in 5 EU countries (Cyprus, Greece, Poland, France (including Martinique) and Spain) and is supported by the Erasmus+ Programme.

The project aims at providing youth NGOs with innovative comprehensive tools and means to successfully and effectively adopt, plan, and implement prevention measures aiming at combating sexual violence against children, adolescents and youth. The whole project will be based on primary prevention approaches including information sharing, awareness raising, education, training, networking and cooperation, using non-formal learning tools and methods.

At the end of the collaboration, 7 outputs will be produced:

  1. A guide on sexual violence prevention through Youth Work, containing data on strategies, programmes and good practices shared between partners during the project
  2. An online awareness-raising campaign
  3. A package of e-learning training modules addressed at Youth Organisations
  4. A package of e-learning training modules entitled addressed at individuals
  5. An Interactive e-learning and training platform on sexual violence prevention through Youth Work gathering all the documentation produced
  6. Strategic Action Plan including the conclusions, policy recommendations, legislation amendments, based on proposals, suggestions, ideas expressed by all participants of Round Table Discussions organized in each partner country and the open access Online Discussion Forum.
  7. REACT-ACT-PREVENT SEXUAL VIOLENCE INFO CENTERS. The Centers will provide information, and raise awareness on sexual violence prevention strategies, policies, programs and practices and services will be provided on a personal and online levels.

More info on the project

Action Day #11: Promoting Gender Equality

To celebrate our 25th year acting and networking towards Social Inclusion of Young People, we wanted to put a spotlight on some of the ENTER Recommendation, a tool we often use to teach Young People about the Access of Social Rights.

ENTER Recommendation #11:
Improving gender equality (…)

The ENTER Recommendation developed by the Council of Europe suggests various measures allowing more access to social rights for young people from disadvantaged neighbourhoods. A part of this Recommendation focuses specifically on improving gender equality of young people living in these disadvantaged neighbourhoods.

To demonstrate that it CAN be done, we chose to tell about Active Youth Association, our partner organisation for Lithuania, and their project SURF: Stand Up for Rights of Females.

SURF Project: Empowering Women

With this project, Active Youth aims at empowering women by boosting gender equality across communities in the participating countries/regions: Lithuania, Senegal, India and the Honduras. Using a training programme on “women protection & development”, the activities gathered/will gather youth workers & young leaders from EU & Partner countries for the different phases of the projects: a kick-off meeting, 3 job shadowings, 3 training courses and a final conference.

The objectives of the project are to:

  • Identify the main threats and obstacles for gender equality within the participating countries.
  • Develop skills and tools for the protection and development of women´s rights.
  • Transfer these skills/tools to relevant groups (e.g. youth workers).
  • Strengthen partnership between European and non-European organizations.
  • Improve the capacity of the partners to protect and develop women´s rights.



This project is supported by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union 

Action Day #10: supporting youth work

To celebrate our 25th year acting and networking towards Social Inclusion of Young People, we wanted to put a spotlight on some of the ENTER Recommendation, a tool we often use to teach Young People about the Access of Social Rights.

ENTER recommendation #10:
Supporting non-formal education (…)

For 25 years now, our member organisations and us have been using non-formal education/learning to help young people overcome their disadvantages and become active in their communities. This form of education, although being proven efficient, is poorly recognised socially and politically.

The ENTER Recommendation developed by the Council of Europe lists several measures governments and youth organisations can implement to increase the recognition and support of youth work and non-formal education/learning. Here’s how we implement these measures:

⇒ Encouraging the exchange of expertise between professionals working with young people
⇒ Supporting youth work professionals and youth organisations that provide non-formal education/learning in the promotion of best practices
Encouraging responsible authorities to recognise and value youth work as an important measure in supporting community cohesion

With this strategic partnership project, our member organisations get the opportunity to meet other partners and learn from an expert and each other’s practices on innovative digital tools. The first training course on Digital Storytelling allowed youth workers form each organisation to learn technics on digital storytelling from our expert film director and coach, Leo Zbanke. Another phase of the project (which will take place in 2019), will consist of 3 peer learning study visits of some of the organisations to discover each other’s implementation of digital tools in the frame of Youth Work.

During the process, the participating NGOs also get to share their good practices to the general public. The topic, digital storytelling, allows all parties of the project to share the video results and reach, through social media, both society and responsible authorities, thus demonstrating their expertise and the impact that youth work has on young people with fewer opportunities.

“Digitalise it” is financially supported by  and 

Action Day #9: Preventing Discrimination

To celebrate our 25th year acting and networking towards Social Inclusion of Young People, we wanted to put a spotlight on some of the ENTER Recommendation, a tool we often use to teach Young People about the Access of Social Rights.

ENTER recommendation #9:
Preventing discrimination

Discrimination is a barrier to active citizenship. Many young people with fewer opportunities experience discrimination because of social prejudice and isolation. As explained in the ENTER Recommendation, measures promoting cohesion and positive relations between people from different backgrounds can be implemented by organisations, municipalities, governments… In this article, we wanted to show you two examples of those successful measures, implemented by the Eurometropole of Strasbourg and our partner organisation Volunteers for All Association.

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Strasbourg Municipality, France

Each year, the City of Strasbourg and its partner organisations organise “The Weeks of Equality and Fight against Discrimination”, 3 weeks of events aimed at educating and raising awareness among children, young people and the general public on equality and discrimination.

These equality weeks offer to its visitors various workshops, games, and creative activities, developed to raise awareness and allow people to reflect and understand the other with their differences.

Whether related to sexual orientation, skin color, ethnicity, disability or religion, all discrimination is represented and deconstructed during this event!

We had the opportunity to visit this interactive exhibition with our participants in 2017, during our Structured Dialogue activity “Shaping Europe Together”. This year, the equality and anti-discrimination weeks will be held from September 24th to October 20th.


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Volunteers for All Association, Romania

At the beginning of September, Youth Express Network took part in the Youth Exchange “Don’t be afraid to show your true Colours”, organised by Volunteers for All Association in Milcoveni, Romania.

During 8 days, 40 young people coming from 7 different countries gathered to work together towards fighting against LGBTIQ+ discrimination and promoting LGBTIQ+ Rights. Thanks to a non-formal education based programme, they learned more about each other’s realities and the situation of the LGBTIQ+ community in several countries of Europe. Together, they thought about solutions and ways to fight against discrimination at local level.

As a result of this work, the group had the opportunity to actively raise awareness on LGBTIQ+ Rights in the city center of Resita, Romania. The young people got to make their voices heard through various artistic and informative means such as: a dance performance, impactful posters, a live and online survey and an info point.

This youth exchange was born from an idea developed during our Partnership Building Activity “Working Together in Europe“, in 2017. It was financially supported by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union.


Action Day #8: Boosting Social Inclusion

To celebrate our 25th year acting and networking towards Social Inclusion of Young People, we wanted to put a spotlight on some of the ENTER Recommendation, a tool we often use to teach Young People about the Access of Social Rights.

ENTER recommendation #8:
Breaking down segregation and the promotion of social inclusion.

Young people living in disadvantaged neighbourhoods often experience isolation and segregation. As explained in the ENTER Recommendation, measures can be implemented to ensure the access of social inclusion to young people with fewer opportunities, for example: reaching out directly to some of the most isolated and disenfranchised young people, offering them opportunities and addressing their specific needsIn this article, we will focus on examples of projects Youth Express Network and its member organisations have recently developed to facilitate the social inclusion of refugees and Roma people.

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Resita, Romania – Member Organisation

Our member organisation Nevo Parudimos association focuses its work on the Social Inclusion of the Roma communities, mainly young people. From August 2017 to May 2018, Nevo Parudimos implemented the project “Boosting Roma Youth Employment – B.R.Y.E.“, a mobility project for Roma young people and youth workers, supported by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union.

The project tackled the issue of youth employment by both improving the experience and knowledge of youth/social workers and young people in the field of youth employment and career guidance. It was composed of 3 activities:

  1. Mobility of Youth Workers: Training for Professional Career Councelling implemented in 23-30.09.2017 in Valaská-Piesok, Slovakia
  2. Youth Exchange: Choice Is Yours! implemented in 23-30.10.2017 in Milcoveni in Romania
  3. Youth Exchange: Start & Succeed! implemented in 13-21.04.2018 in Milcoveni Romania

“Boosting Roma Youth Employment” gathered 6 youth organisations coming from 6 European Countries: Bulgaria, Hungary, Italy, Romania, Slovakia and Spain. The project involved 30 participants for the training, and 60 young people + 12 group leaders for each of the youth exchanges. As a result, this initiative efficiently increased capacity of all 150 participants to the labour market.

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Our youth exchange “All Inclusive2” started this week and is currently taking place in Poronin, Poland. Financially supported by the European Youth Foundation and the Erasmus+ programme, it is the third activity of our work plan for this year: “Art.S.I: The Art of Social Inclusion“. It is hosted by our partner organisation Fundacja Instytut Innowacji

This Youth Exchange is gathering 42 people from 6 different countries and 8 organisations. Together, they will learn how to express themselves through art on the topic of social inclusion of migrants and refugees!

Amongst the various workshops and sessions that will be facilitated through the several days of activity, the young participants will get the opportunity of creating and performing a street event in order to raise awareness on Social Inclusion of migrants and refugees. They will address their message of inclusion directly to the inhabitants of Krakow, through art and the various tools they will have learned.

Action Day #7: Culture, Leisure and Sport

To celebrate our 25th year acting and networking towards Social Inclusion of Young People, we wanted to put a spotlight on some of the ENTER Recommendation, a tool we often use to teach Young People about the Access of Social Rights.

ENTER recommendation #7:
Culture, Leisure and Sports.

This month, we asked our member organisations and friends to tell us about the various measures they implement at local level to help young people access Culture, Leisure and Sports. Here are their answers!

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Oviedo, Spain – Member Organisation

Inclusion of young people with fewer opportunities through sports in nature & youth exchanges.

“The combination of outdoor sports and young people with fewer opportunities is definitely worth to take into consideration for youth organizations working towards social inclusion. Outdoor sports in nature open up a space for new possibilities, where we can explore limits in different levels. Firstly, in terms of self knowledge, every youngster has the chance to understand the boundaries that have an effect on his/her social, physical, psychological condition and how he/she wants to relate to them (what are the boundaries that affect me the most, am I willing to extend/break these limits, do I have any help to do so, etc).

The second level is connected to teamwork, playing sports in nature is a chance to improve group cooperation as it fosters peer-to-peer learning. Both play & nature are two elements that help to overcome individual prejudices towards a better group cohesion. Finally, the last level is re-discover nature that offers a place free of labels & boundaries, a place where young people with fewer opportunities can get out of closed spaces where they usually have to be (physically and psychologically speaking). In this sense, nature in a perfect context for young people to connect with their most authentic self.

If you add to this combination a third ingredient, youth intercultural exchanges, the experience can be even more enriching & transformative in different ways. Gathering together groups of young people coming from different cultural background is an opportunity to grow through intercultural dialogue. Being in a diverse group gives youngsters the chance to think beyond their cultural frame, but also to share their difficulties and challenges with persons with whom they have many things in common, thus developing a strong sense of belonging and inclusion. In this framework of youth exchanges, working through sports in nature also boosts youth empowerment, as they are invited to cross beyond their comfort zone with the support of other youngsters and youth workers.

In Youropía we have been developing these type of projects over the last years, hosting youth exchanges within the frame of Erasmus+ in our region. The main purpose of these intercultural meetings is to foster inclusion of young people with fewer opportunities through outdoor sports. Projects such as Lost in translation, Lost in nature & Lost again have been a very inspiring and high impact experience as regards personal & group development. Thanks to these exchanges we have witnessed how young people became active agents in inclusion after developing a strong awareness of social & group cohesion.
We are actually so motivated with this topic that In two weeks we will host another youth exchange called BEAST (Better energy and social thrive) in which we will gather 24 youngsters from Helsinki, Krakow and Oviedo. Hopefully the combination of sports in nature, young people with fewer opportunities and intercultural youth exchange will be again a learning and life changing experience for all of us!”


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Tbilisi, Georgia – Member Organisation

In July 2018, the Institute for Democratic Changes, our member organisation from Georgia, implemented a Youth Exchange called “The Sound of Culture”. This project supported by the Erasmus Plus programme aimed at deepening co-operation among young people, intercultural dialogue and encouraging the inclusion of young people with disabilities in international projects. The Youth Exchange gathered a total of 34 young people from Georgia and Estonia.

Through activities based on non-formal education, the group got to learn more on various topics such as inclusion, youth cooperation, and intercultural dialogue. But another big part of the project was the sharing of Culture and Traditions. Throughout the 9 days of the Youth Exchange, the young people got to discover the culture and traditions of the country of their fellow participants, as well as the inclusion of young people with disabilities in cultural and international youth projects. They also got to express themselves through art and finished the Youth Exchange with a public presentation of their musical numbers and theatrical performances.

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Porto, Portugal – Friend Organisation

“Okna: /ˈɔ center of east european culture, open space of multiculturality, community experience, window of the east in Portugal, also known as Plus East”

“In times when getting people together is more and more important, Plus East appears by the end of 2016 with the clear aim of promoting East European culture in Portugal, building bridges between the two sides of the continent.

And what better way to promote a contemporary, modern idea of the East than through cinema? Films have always been moments of togetherness, sharing emotions and stories, this is why we organise BEAST – International Film Festival, a big scale event representing 21 countries in Porto during 5 days of pictures, workshops, masterclasses, meeting between directors and the audience, roundtables, music and parties. The festival creates a strong connection between the New East and the community of Porto, involving volunteers, students, businesses and institutions.

On our year long activity OKNA is the home of Plus East, more than an office it is a window to the East, a gallery, a screening venue and the place where our EVS work, helping us on the development of several projects as the festival, but also the cinema cycles, as the Romanian Film Nights and also where their projects become reality – as Isabela’s ArtAmalgam, an illustration exhibition with 3 artists from the 3 Baltic countries, or Mona’s monthly book club and Alexandru’s Night Photography exhibition. Since its inauguration in April 2018, with an exhibition of a Portuguese photographer in Ukraine, OKNA has received over 500 people.

Plus East and its team is dedicated to promote culture and art as a way of creating a more tolerant and open society across Europe where young people feel empowered to create and exchange.”

Plus EAST team

Action Day #6: Housing

We continue our 25th year celebration, with a closer look to a sixth ENTER Recommendation, the recommendation on Housing of Young People.

One of our French member organisations, the Association l’Etage, works every day towards the support of young people in difficult situations. The access to Housing is one of their main actions.

Strasbourg, FRANCE – Member organisation

L’Etage, club de jeunes

For 30 years now, the “Étage, club de jeunes” has been supporting young people with difficult backgrounds through various types of actions: day care, social restaurant, postal domiciliation, access to health care, parenting support, individual support and counsel…

The cafeteria, opened all day, and the social restaurant, opened from 8:00 to 20:00, allows the organisation to create and keep a human contact with the youth population in difficult situations, often homeless young people. Each year, a thousand people come to the Etage for help and support.

For the past 15 years, the organisation has widened its services to new publics such as families or remote populations of all ages, but the young people are still the main beneficiaries.

Access to housing in numbers

Each year, the organisation implements various measures to support young people with housing:

  • 10 stabilisation spots: with this measure, the organisation gives an individual social support and counsel to remote young people, allowing them to access stability and facilitate their future orientation towards structures adapted to their situations;
  • 29 spots in Accommodation Shelters;
  • 50 spots of “renting inter-mediation” : with this measure, the organisation contributes to give guarantees to the landlords, allowing the access of young people to a stable renting solution;
  • 70 spots for the European Resettlement Programme for Refugees: this measure in linked to the commitment of the French government to welcome 10 000 people in the frame of the European Resettlement Programme.

Since December 2013, the organisation l’Etage also helps families “with uncomplete rights”. The Family Accommodation Center has developed considerably since this date. The center’s agreements have allowed the hosting and support of 518 people, including a majority of children.

Public registered at the day care

The “Lézard au soleil” event, an art sale for the organisations

The association l’Etage organises each year an art sale called the “Lezard au Soleil”. The profits of this sale goes to a different association each year. On the 30th of June, 60 artists will paint on the docks of Strasbourg.

The profits of this 22th edition will go to a collective of associations of people hosting and supporting Syrian and Iraqi refugees to help them with their inclusion in France. Musical animations, drinks and food will also be proposed during the event. Link to the event on the image (French)!

Sources (French)

ACTION DAY #5: The Art of Togetherness!

This year, Youth Express Network celebrates 25 years of work and action towards Social Inclusion of Young People. We wanted to take this celebration as an opportunity to put a spotlight on some of the ENTER Recommendation, a tool we often use to teach Young People about the Access of Social Rights.

Our #12actions project aims at dedicating each month to one of the ENTER Recommendation by doing, initiating or communicating on various ways to implement these recommendation and by doing so, contribute to a better access of Social Rights for young people.

ENTER recommendation #5:
Education and training.

Youth Express Network has organised several trainings during the past 25 years! As a matter of fact, we did one of those this month! We thought it would be an interesting example of what can be done at local, European and International level, to provide youth and social/youth workers with education and training on Social Rights and how to access them.

Training of trainers

The training of trainers “The Art of Togetherness” was the first activity of our work plan of 2018: “ArtSI: The Art of Social Inclusion”. It took place at the European Youth Center of Strasbourg between the 11th and 17th of May 2018 and was supported by the European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe.

The Aim of this training was to grow and train a new generation of Y-E-N trainers and facilitators, able to make an impact on young people’s lives using artistic expression to promote empowerment, full access to social rights and a sense of Togetherness.

The training gathered 25 youth and social workers coming from 18 different countries! 24 youth organisations from all over Europe were represented.


Regional Youth Exchanges

The work plan “ArtSI: The Art of Social Inclusion” will continue its work through 3 regional youth exchanges between the months of July and September. During these Youth Exchanges, the participants of our training of trainers will become youth leaders and facilitate the activities.

Together, they will put to practice the knowledge, skills and competences they got from the training and guide the young people through topics such as: youth expression, peacebuilding and conflict transformation, social inclusion of young refugees and their transition from childhood to adulthood, youth expression, intercultural dialogue and social inclusion of minorities.

Work Plan supported by the European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe.

ACTION DAY #4: We inform Youth!

To celebrate our 25th year acting and networking towards Social Inclusion of Young People, we wanted to put a spotlight on some of the ENTER Recommendation, a tool we often use to teach Young People about the Access of Social Rights.

ENTER recommendation #4:
Information and Counseling.

This month, we asked our friends and member organisations to tell us about the various methods, solutions and good practices they implement at local level to provide Youth with information and counsel. Here are their answers!

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Oviedo, Spain – Member Organisation

“When the youth cannot come to us… we go to the youth.”

“In their transition to adulthood, young people have to take decisions that have a strong impact on their lives. Having equal access to quality and free information is essential for them to make use of their rights and to participate in society. But how to support it?

From Youropía, we tried to answer this question, focusing on essential information about youth mobility and non-formal learning. Since 2014 we set up an “info-point for youth mobility” centred in mobility-schemes and learning opportunities. Mainly Erasmus+ (European Voluntary Service, Youth Exchanges…), but not only that: Erasmus for young entrepreneurs, Creative Europe, EURES are just some of the programmes considered.

No matter who approached us at our office or made a query on-line (by email or chat), almost every youngster we met had something in common: that inner sparkle of exploring what is outside the comfort zone…, but also this feeling of being a lost, still wondering what path to take. Yet, we are all different and we all need different answers; and that’s why we decided to include different approaches too.

Although the main service is an individual 1-to1 session, tailored to the specific needs and interest of the young person who decides to enjoy the “info-point”, we also set up open sessions for groups of young people willing to get to know more about some specific subject: EVS, European Solidarity Corps, Youth Guarantee, etc.

And when the youth cannot come to us… we go to the youth. With our “mobile info-point for youth mobility”, we have the chance to go to schools and youth centres in different areas of our region and reach out to young people that cannot participate otherwise.

But “mobility and learning” is also celebration! With “Nómadas” (nomads), we gathered people who believed in the importance of travelling and exposing yourself to other cultures. In this 1 day event we combined youth information with motivational speeches and personal experiences. In 2017, Alba, Alfonso, Juan and Pablo shared their experience with Y-E-N in “Living Together in Europe” and Nomadas 2018 is around the corner… stay tuned!”

Simone – Youropía

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Nancy – Strasbourg, France – Friend Organisation

Promoting international mobility, from information to reality

Parcours le Monde – Grand Est (PLMGE) is a local organisation based in Nancy and Strasbourg in the Grand-Est region of France and information & counseling for young people are two of our main objectives! We develop information and promotion campaigns for the democratisation of international mobility and access for the target groups who are the most excluded from it.

Our target groups are mostly young people living in sensitive neighborhoods, in remote rural areas and without occupation and/or without diploma, who do not believe that an experience of work, internship or volunteering abroad is made for them for several reasons (too expensive, lack of competences, no foreign languages skills etc.). Thus, we deliver collective information sessions on the different opportunities for international mobility and their access, while also tackling intercultural aspects of mobility and the valorisation of such experience in one’s CV.

The sessions are built on a non-formal and youth-centered approach using self-reflection on the added value & challenges of mobility and the competences to be acquired, simulation games on stereotypes etc. Those information sessions are delivered in the 2 offices but also directly into socio-cultural centres, youth centres and local counsel centres for youth employment!

Thanks to these information sessions many young people stay in touch with us in order to explore the possibilities for them to go on an EVS mission, a Working Holiday Visa, an internship abroad or a youth exchange etc. That is where we begin individual guidance and counseling for our target groups: building their mobility project, linguistic and intercultural preparation etc. The guidance goes on during the departure but also after they return in order to accompany them in the valorisation of their competences and their follow-up plan.”

Cécile and Emmeline – Parcours le Monde Grand Est

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Ostia-Rome, Italy – Friend Organisation

Gathering young people around Social Rights

Humanity Over People (HOP) is a youth organisation based in Ostia-Rome, Italy. Like Youth Express Network, HOP organises various activities with young people using non-formal education to promote Social Inclusion, intercultural dialogue and the respect of diversity. Andrea, Secretary of HOP, shared with us on a project they did aiming at informing young people about their rights.

“The aim of our project HOPERATIVE IN EUROPE was to give access to social rights to high-school students using non-formal education. We helped them understand what social rights are, how they can claim for them and how to achieve active participation in the society. The total amount of Participants was: 44 students and 6 migrants.

This project was composed of 7 meetings, each focused on different rights: 1- no discrimination, 2- freedom of movement, 3- education, 4- housing, 5- right to work, 6- health care. For each of these meetings, we went to them and met them in their classes. We always started the meeting with questions on each of the specific rights and then worked on them using non-formal education: “Step forward” for non-discrimination; “World cafè” for education and freedom of movement; problem solving for housing; forum theatre for the right to work; simple explaination for health care system. Everyday, the students had to find out if these rights are protected or not in other European countries: they used newspapers and their mobiles. Thanks to that, they were able to increase their capacity of analysis of their society.

They also built, step by step, a Charter of Social Rights, thanks to the pieces of information they got from answering the questions relating to the right of the day at the beginning of each meeting.

Since another important aspect of our project was social inclusion, the last meeting was a walk in the archeological area of Ostia Antica during which students had to explain to migrants, hosted at CAS in Fiumicino, the history of the ancient harbour of Rome. We wanted to create a bridge between students and migrants.

At the end, we brought students closer to the ENTER Recommendation: what they are, how they can be implemented and their contribution to social rights.

Throughout the project, the students were really interested since non formal education is not so usual in the Italian educational system!”

Andrea – Hop

ACTION DAY #3: It’s in the Works!

This year, in the frame of our big anniversary project, we wanted to put a spotlight on some of ENTER Recommendation by, each month, initiating or communicating on 1 action related to 1 recommendation. 1 month / 1 recommendation / 1 action. This month, we take a look at Employment and Occupation!

ENTER recommendation #3:
Employment and Occupation.

For 25 years now, Youth Express Network has organised more than 100 projects focused on all kinds of issues and topics. Employment and Occupation has been one of them. We thought that this Action Day could be an opportunity to present two examples of projects we did focusing on this topic.

2011-2012: You(th) are the Champions!

“You(th) are the Champions: Strategies for youth employment” was a multi measure project aiming at changing the situation of youth employment in Europe. The project gathered 153 participants, representing 22 partners organisations and coming from 15 different countries: Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Turkey.


The objectives or the project were:

  • To support young people’s access to employment
  • To provide tools to empower young people
  • To assess the transferability of competencies acquired or developed through volunteering
  • To promote young people’s sense of initiative and entrepreneurship

18 monts to inspire Young People

The project lasted 18 months and was composed of 5 different actions. All activities were based on non-formal education methods and on the needs and contributions of the participants. Some methods used were: individual work, small discussion groups, plenary work, group dynamics, co-operative games and personal challenges (outdoor education), Open space technology, theoretical inputs, practice (coaching), experiential learning and artistic workshops.

The 5 actions were:

  • Feasibility Visit « In the Starting Blocks! », Spain, September 2011: building the partnership
  • Training Course « Coach Me If You Can! », Portugal, November 2011: working on knowledge, skills and attitudes in the field of coaching towards empowerment and employment of young people
  • Seminar « Jump In! », Romania, April 2012: identifying key competencies developed during volunteer activities and how these competencies can improve young people’s employability
  • Training Course « Take a Risk! », Lithuania, August 2012: using experiential learning and Outdoor education to show how taking risks can be a motor for personal and professional development
  • Evaluation Meeting: « Cross the Finishing Line! », Croatia, October 2012: measuring and disseminating the results

Motivated Young People and an institutional recognition

This project had beautiful results:

Y-E-N’s own working culture was improved;

  • 53 participants trained, skilled and motivated to work on coaching young people towards employment and therefore actively fight for youth employment in Europe;
  • Links with new organisations and opportunities for new European cooperation between youth organisations;
  • Recommendations made at European youth policies level for training young people to have more social, interpersonal skills and practical competencies in order to help them reduce the education gap between school and labour market, or recommendations for more mobility opportunities for young people in Europe and for more recognition of non formal education;
  • Recognition as a best practice by the European Youth Forum and its Youth Employment Action platform (where Y-E-N was an active member):, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO).


2018-2019: “EntreprenEUrship for CultYOUre” (EU4YOU)

This year, Youth Express Network and our 8 partners will embarked on an international project for 2 years. Together, we will share good practices and develop innovative complementary pathways for boosting employability of young people through social youth entrepreneurship. We will also provide each other with tools for cultural entrepreneurship.

This project gathers social workers from 8 different organisations coming from Argentina, Bulgaria, France, Greece, Lithuania, Mexico, Peru and Vietnam. We had our first meeting in Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria, at the end of January.


EU4YOU will be composed of several phases of work and collaboration (see timeline bellow for more detail):

  • Kick off meeting merged with a Capacity building seminar on Social and Cultural Entrepreneurship in Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria.
  • Seminar on cultural management education and development of learning tools in Cancun, Mexico.
  • For a period of 2 or 3 weeks – Job shadowing mobility aimed developing toolkit on Cultural Entrepreneurship.
  • Development of a toolkit
  • Final seminar in Strasbourg, France, to evaluate results and present toolkit to public.

EU4YOU is supported by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union