Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Training Course in Greece!

The ACRO NGO is applying for a training course under the title 'Bridge' regarding EVS!
The aim is to create a network of multipliers as to have a database of volunteers for exchanging knowledge, experience and youth workers.

The event is taking place in June 2010 with 4 participants per country aged from 18 to 28.
Anyone interested, please contact: Magda Douka, magda.douka@gmail.com

Monday, 14 September 2009

So what happens next?

There were a few project ideas initiated during the meeting:

  • Dream a little Dream (and make it happen!) is an idea for creating a 'better world'. The change is to be initiated in different levels... through self-development, through community development. Through media, arts and creativity and through influencing economists, journalists etc. Within the group we have agreed to exchange different views of change via e-mails and see where we find the common points.

  • Youth in Relaxtion is a project answering the fast and wild, yet beautiful world we live in and the need for learning how to relax in the speeding for success. The idea is to make a training course where youth leaders would learn different reaxation techniques.

  • A Chair for the World was initally meant to be a youth exchange though during the talks it felt more as a youth initiative within which there could be a youth exchange event organised as well. The idea is to initiate different activities for promoting preservation of natural goods. One of the ideas was to turn unused chairs into something useful for example a flower pot which we would place in front of the houses or buildings in the city. That is how we wouldn't throw them away and at the same time we would have plants growing where they usually don't. As a peak of different activities there would be a 10 days exchange organised with youth from different countries joining in a 'survival' challenge in the nature (with therapy with horses).

  • Chain of Compliments is meant as a youth initiative project for creating moments of happiness within people... Simply by giving compliments or nice thoughts to others. No matter if they are friends, family, colleagues at work or total strangers. The personal chain is to grow into making posters and flyers, pocket compliment books, a web page.

These project ideas are based on thinking (or rather dreaming) of our world as a place we would want it to be. It is the changes we would want to make as creators of a better world.

All of them are beautiful ideas and worth working on which is also what the participants of the meeting agreed upon. We were thinking about how to support the actual realisation.

One way would be to apply for funding the network under Youth in Action programme, action 4.3. This is how we would enable partners in developing the projects further by being able to meet and cover other costs for planning. It would also help strenghtening the relations between partners and so create a sustainable partnership.


Sunday, 13 September 2009



Defining a common project(s) we might want to pursue,
steps that need to be made,
sharing tasks and responsibilities.


Saturday, 12 September 2009



Preparations for the public event in cooperation with The Association for the Blind.
- tandem cycling,
- golball (a game with a sounding ball),
- 'blindwalking',
- presenting YiA,
- lots of fun!!!

Somewhere Over the Rainbow: the world we want to help create.
Joining ideas, creating working groups.
Working in smaller groups, creating basic project ideas.

So how about this energizer ;)

Preparing and presenting project ideas, defining the type of a project.
Letting it cook in our minds :)
Daily evaluation.
Free evening.

Friday, 11 September 2009


Attending MAN garden: planting the seeds, growing plants, see what's under the rocks.
Brief organisation/ group/individuals presentations.

'Baking' a cultural cake – sharing pieces on speed dates.
ACTivation projects presentations.
What made you choose those projects? Implementing Appreciative Inquiry principles.
Daily evaluation.

Dinner &Intercultural Bazaar.

Thursday, 10 September 2009


Participant arrivals.
A traditional Slavic welcome.
Who is who?
Uverture to our common journey or... getting to know eachother.

Monday, 7 September 2009

L'ARCOBALENO, the Rainbow Crossing from Italy

L’Arcobaleno is a social service cooperative which works with young people and adults since 1984.

The main sector and organization background is health education. Since 1987 Arcobaleno has been running a community for people with addiction problems (drug, alcohol), who are hosted to be followed by a team of experts to get over their addiction. The community has been hosted more than 400 people coming from the region.

The second sector, called “Route_ag”, deals with education&training for adults and youth, and youth policies. The main objective is the active involvement of people in non formal education paths. Route_ag promotes: the management and coordination of counselling centres; juvenile aggregation centres; meetings; trainings and workshops.

The main activities are:
- promotion of youth policies and cultures,
- social inclusion,
- street education,
- health education,
- expression through art,
- media and communication,
- intercultural learning,
- experiential learning,
- international mobility.

Target Groups:
- Young people from 15 to 30,
- Adults: parents, teachers, social workers, services workers.

Presenting H2O from Portugal

Arrouquelas is a small village in the centre of Portugal, in the district of Rio Maior which is known by its sports achievements. Our county is well known for its wines and gastronomic specialties, mainly made of pork meat. There are many people who work in agriculture and whose jobs are very precarious. Agriculture and breeding cattle are very important activities in the economy of our region, Ribatejo. Voluntarism, based on solidarity, friendship, compassion, citizenship has been fighting back the tendency of our societies which promote material values and breed selfish people whose main worries are to buy the next newly arrived good in the market. Therefore, associations like ours are a very important factor in the social development, as in some cases the only development opportunity.

We're an association whose typical name is “H2O”, was founded in 1996 and nowadays has 100 members. We carry out several kinds of activities, which mainly promote environmental awareness. Our work has been acknowledged both by regional and national entities. Voluntarisme and concentration characterise our work, which aims at educating people and thus becomes considerably relevant in the communities development. Gradually, we have managed to orientate the people in a region that despite being close to Lisbon has serious social and financial needs, like a rural area that we are.

Generally speaking, our association aims to show that the habitants of the rural areas can and should have the same opportunities that those in the urban areas have. Therefore we try to offer them activities that they can only carry out in the countryside, in which we try to match the countryside’s' best assets — the environment and nature— with the conditions they find in the cities. We carry out Non-formal Education, we organise debates on various themes, all aiming the protection of the environment; we promote awareness campaigns in which we conceive posters and fliers.

We are involved in National and International projects connected with European Citizenship, organise exchanges, seminars and training courses as sending and hosting organization. Our association has got its own facilities, which was built by our members. Despite some difficulties, we try to keep track of the new technologies, through our cyber space, which allows access to the Internet.

They have been arround...

Sunday, 6 September 2009

Magyar Zanemuveszeti Alapitvany Stationed in Hungary

An organization from Budapest, Hungary, supporting young artists, musicians. Their target group is unestablished talents, creating in 'less popular' music branches.

As all the musicians are not at the same time managers, economists or media people, this organization is offering support at organizing events/concerts, media publishing etc.

Saturday, 5 September 2009

European Youth Press

The European Youth Press is an umbrella association of young journalists in Europe. It involves more than 48,000 journalists who are less than 30 years of age. The association consists of twenty member organizations, of which eighteen are national youth media associations. For everyday work EYP elects a board, that serves two years, which works together closely with the associations’ European secretariat.

The European Youth Press is a young association, not only because it was founded in 2004, but because the participants are young themselves. Journalists who are organized in the European Youth Press are working for either school magazines, internet projects, radio and video productions, or are interns in editor-rooms, freelance journalists, journalism students or trainees.

The European Youth Press’ primary objective is to ensure strong cooperation among national youth media structures through group projects. Moreover, the Press’ overall aim is to strengthen the role of youth media and promote freedom of press in Europe. The European Youth Press also takes part in discussions about journalistic education standards and media policies throughout the European Union. The EYP sees itself as serving the national structures through the development and coordination of projects that are organized by young media makers in Europe. The EYP also provides contact forums and educational seminars for multipliers of the member associations and provides internal and external communication among all partners.

Young people write for young people – and give topics a youth perspective; a perspective which is sometimes overlooked when examining European issues. At the European Youth Press, we want to contribute to the intercultural exchange in Europe by facilitating direct contacts between young journalists through international projects and events.

Equal People Squad from Belgium...

...is a trainers collective designing and delivering trainings mainly for non-profit organisations started by Steven Haine.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Greek Activators, ACRO NGO

Active Creative Reforming Organization from Greece :)

Non governamental organisation established in 2007 in Kastoria and already organised/participated in training courses, seminars, youth exchanges and the European Youth Week 2008.

Check this link for the news on INFOLIBRARY.

Sunday, 30 August 2009

British patners - Intercultural Navigators

We have two representatives of the Intercultural Navigators from the UK - Aime and Sarah:
Sarah is working for
YDance (Scottish Youth Dance), the National Youth Dance Agency for Scotland.
Aime is not formally involved with young people but has always had an interest in working with them. In 2003, he initiated and implemented a six month project that linked newly arrived ethnic minority young people in the UK with career advisers so they can be informed on how the UK employment system works. Currently he is working on the possibility to launch another youth project that involve young people discussing current issue they face in the UK and potential solutions to these problems.

Here is some information about Intercultural Navigators project:
Recent research carried out by British Council shows that Europe’s next generation of leaders are truly concerned about intercultural issues. In response to their concerns, the British Council has initiated Intercultural Navigators – a project that will deal with the challenges that we face in this multicultural world.

Intercultural Navigators will develop groups of young leaders in Europe who can easily ‘navigate’ within and between different cultures – who are aware of their own cultural backgrounds and who are able and open enough to accept, respect and understand other cultures. A large-scale project will be organised in partnership with a diverse group of institutions and experts working in the area of leadership development and intercultural literacy from the UK, Europe and Africa.

The participants - “Navigators” will be able to contribute to current debates surrounding issues such as:
· Diaspora communities and their relationships with home and receiving societies,
· The unprecedented movement of people between new and old EU member states,
· The importance of intercultural competencies in global business,
· How well integrated intercultural understanding is in policy making at a all levels,
· How well leaders from ‘fortress’ Europe, Africa and other regions are linked together,
· How well developed is participation at all levels of society and is this participation having a positive impact when addressing the roots of violent extremism.

The Intercultural Navigators project will run in 16 European countries with 30–70 participants in each country, who will all come together in a global on-line community and share experiences and knowledge in the field of intercultural dialogue. Participants will be enabled to effect change in their own countries, institutions and communities based on participation, consultation and the creation of an enabling environment.

Who are Intercultural Navigators?
The Intercultural Navigators Programme seeks to bring together those with a desire to make a significant positive contribution to society; people who are want to learn, are open minded, curious, and willing to share their own experiences and at the same time actively seek new perspectives. The programme aims to achieve a balance of diversity in terms of religion, gender, disability, ethnicity, class, sectors (private/public/civil society) and geographical balance (rural/urban and regional/provincial), in order to reflect and impact across society at country level. The selection criteria will be centred around your potential to make a genuine difference.
About this last sentence – are we not solidifying these differences if we make them explicit – AI says ‘The language use makes your reality’?

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Partner from Poland - POLITES

POLITES is an NGO, established in 2002 in Szczecin, Poland. We have decided to fulfil our dreams and to create a non-governmental organization, which would activate young people on the local ground.

Our field of action includes the youth, academic community and the local communities - the city and region.

Our goal is to initiate and to support the cultural, educational, scientific, sports and ecological activities. We also want to spread the charity, organize and promote voluntary and establish international relations. Our Association supports as well other ways of self-cultivation.

We run local and international projects as Big Brothers Big Sisters, Eurodesk-Regional Inquiry desk in Szczecin, Voluntary Center in Szczecin, European Voluntary Service and Leonardo da Vinci projects.

We collaborate with many European NGO’s to promote intercultural dialogue and cooperation through Youth in Action activities. We are open to new and international activities!

The way to tell much more than with words...

Saturday, 1 August 2009

What is Mission ACTivate Network (MAN)?

MAN is a feasibility meeting initiated by a group of youth leaders that were attending a training course on youth participation in the summer 2008 in Athens. Organisation representatives have decided to jointly create a project to initiate a more active involvement of young people in society. In the following year a network spread a bit so we now have partners from Belgium, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Turkey and United Kingdom.


However, during the training courses it was almost impossible to find time for more thorough discussions on project ideas. The participants in the Mission ACTivate course agreed that we wish to try bringing them to reality anyways. We decied to organize a feasibility meeting as a chance to discuss and possibly prepare a project we can later pursue in our local communities and as partners in transnational activities.
The meeting is hosted by an NGO, called Zavod Bob, and will take place in Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. The main working methods will be workshops where participants will present and also try some ideas. We plan to already implement some ACTivations in the city of Ljubljana during the meeting.

Who are those ACTivators???

In the meeting we will be gathering strenghts from 10 organisations, ACTive in 9 different countries throughout the whole Europe:

- Belgium/Flemish: Equal People Squad
- Belguim/Brussels: European Youth Press
- Greece: Acro NGO
- Hungary: Magyar Zanemuveszeti Alapitvany
- Italy: So.Cul., social cultural training and management
- Poland: POLITES, Centrum Wolontariatu przy Stowarzyszeniu
- Portugal: H2O, Arrouquelas Younsters Association
- Turkey: Art Students
- United Kingdom: British Council Intercultural Navigators
- Slovenia: Zavod Bob

The venue

Participants will be staying in Hostel Celica. Celica ('A cell' in English) is an artistically renovated former prison turned into a hostel, situated in the centre of Ljubljana. We will also use hostel's seminar room for most of our 'intellectual' activities ;).

Celica was appointed as the hippest hostel in the world by Lonely planet in 2006 for it's unusual accomodation offer and the vivid atmosphere. You can experience to sleep in one of 20 artistically renovated former cells with bars on the door and the window.
Besides cells there are also multi-bed rooms (4, 5, 7 beds per room) with bathrooms, a dormitory (12 beds) with a male and a female bathroom and a wheelchair friendly room for up to 2 physically challenged and 1 accompanying person with wheelchair adjusted bathroom.

The hostel also has a very interesting history. The building used to be a military prison from 1883 until 1991 when Slovenia claimed its independence and the military barracks were left empty.
In 1993 the authorities of Ljubljana City started to demolish the building despite the initiatives of Metelkova Network who wished to turn it into a multicultural centre. To prevent the demolishing, a group of approximately 200 Metelkova Network supporters occupied the buildings and virtually protected them with their bodies. The city authorities turned off the water and the electricity to make them leave and many of them did due to the unbearable conditions. But the most persistent stayed…
A group of them, including Janko Rožič, architect, were joined in the Sestava Association with the idea to turn the former prison that used to confine people into an open and welcoming place, a meeting point for international travelers. The project was later financially supported by the City of Ljubljana and the Student Organization of the University of Ljubljana. The creative planning, renovation and transformation took 10 years and during that time more than 80 artists from all over the world participated in the project. The first travelers spent the night in Hostel Celica in 2003.

In case the explorer within you wants to know more about this interesting place, you can read and see more on http://www.souhostel.com/en/index.html.

The host - who is Bob?

Bob is an NGO, founded on SEP 13th 2007. We are primarily aiming at young people with less opportunities aged from 13 to 30. Our basic aim is ensuring their active participation in society and in social development, especially for those they do not have a public voice or their voice can not be (or is not) heard.
One of the very important aims of Bob is offering international activities for youth in our area. From our past experience it was an opportunity for them to see their situation from a different point of view and helped them finding new solutions for their issues. And not only for them – the experience was very similar for the youth workers! That is why working on Youth in Action programs is our strong interest and desire.
As we are 'new kids on the block' as an organization we are very interested in making contacts with potential partners and generating ideas for future projects – Mission ACTivate Network can be a great opportunity for starting good quality international projects!!!