In the last years, the emergence of violent and terrorist attacks, especially in some Western European countries has risen big concerns and educational and youth work actors need to find effective solutions. Although terrorist radicalization can happen at any age, young people in search of a sense of belonging, purpose, and/or identity may be more vulnerable to violent extremism. Economical crisis is also generating a lack of opportunities and future perspectives for youth; this also led to social exclusion situation where young people can feel lost and susceptible to extremists ‘propaganda Besides that, racism, xenophobia and intolerance are a fertile ground for extremism and violence. Society should offer credible alternatives to violent extremism, including in terms of narratives, role models and opportunities for mobilization, such as democratic participation, civic engagement, access to health and social services and employment opportunities. Front-line actors, such as youth worker’s civil society organizations have a special role to play as they can formulate attractive strategic intervention addressed to youth, through non formal and informal educational approach and methodologies.
The project aims at tackling youth radicalization and extremism by strengthening the role and work of youth and civil society organizations, by equipping them with non formal and peace education methodologies and strategies.
The general aim of the project will be achieved through the following objectives:
Raising awareness about extremists’ recruitment strategies to reach out and approach youth, online and personally; Exploring Radicalization, De-radicalization and and Counter Radicalization concepts and strategies; Providing non formal education methodologies to build up personal Resilience and resistance to extremist’ propaganda: intercultural and intereligious dialogue, peaceful conflict resolutions, positive peer-to-peer interaction, raising self-esteem and resilience to social and life pressures, etc.; Getting familiar with types of Narratives and Counter Narratives as an effective method to enhance resilience; Exploring, trying-out and creating tools to challenge youth radicalization (like music, arts, social media, etc.); Designing joint initiatives and interventions to face the problem on a transnational level.
The Training course will take place in Valencia, from the 15th to the 21th of October 2017. 22 youth workers, leaders, volunteers and youth trainers and facilitators will take part in the training course. Partnership is composed of 10 Non-profit organizations, from: Spain, Italy, Portugal, Ireland, Romania, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany.
All the Activity Program will be implemented through non-formal education and learning by doing methods. Participants will be provided with theoretical knowledge and get familiar with innovative tools, methodologies and strategic interventions. The most used activity format will be workshop, laboratory, simulations, role playing, sharing experience, debate, networking, try-out and creation of new tools. All the activities have a practical approach and enhance the participants’ learning process through empathy, emotions, experimentation, collaborative and intercultural team work.
At the end of the training course, participants will have acquired technical skills and strengthen their professional competences in the field of youth work. Besides that, they will have improved soft and social skills, like working in a team, collaborative working, intercultural skills, learning to learn and self-directed learning, facilitation skills. They will also develop attitudes, like be more open minded, being able to recognize and overcome stereotypes and prejudices, being more empathetic and aware of youth social exclusion, discrimination and hate issues, responding proactively to youth problems and embracing European core values. Partner organizations will strengthen their role in youth de-radicalization. Empowering youth through peace education they will have a positive impact on the society, in terms of social cohesion and tolerance.
Both partners and organizations will be in charge to plan and implement DISSEMINATION ACTIVITIES of project’s outcomes and results, that will be completely free and available to any Internet user on the Project Website. All the main findings, methodologies, strategic interventions and tools will be collected in a Toolkit, by the participants.
The project promotes the European core values in accordance with Article 2 of the Treaty on the European Union and it also comply with the Erasmus + objective and 2017 priorities, as clearly address the violent radicalization of young people through youth work, non formal education and the promotion of respect of human rights, tolerance and freedom.