European Youth Citizen Position – 1st meeting in Narva, Estonia (4-9 November 2014)

From 4th to the 9th of November the first training of “European Youth Citizen Position” project was held in Narva, Estonia.

The Self-development of young people is an extremely important and lifelong process.  Nowadays, this fact is widely recognised and therefore many opportunities for Self-development have appeared within the European Union. The “European Youth Citizen Position” project has set a framework for discussion on four topics related to the human rights issues -European citizenship, democracy, human rights and sports- between Greek and Estonian youths, for them to develop a more concrete view on the topics.

The first meeting of the project was successfully completed in Narva, under the coordination of the Estonian partner “Opilasesinduste Noukogu”.  The reason for this training after the initiation of the project in August 2014 was the experiential approach of the two main issues, human rights and sports. The use of non-formal learning methods was the main characteristic of this training.

On Tuesday the 4th of November, 10 Greeks representing the Greek partner Inter Alia met with 10 Estonians from the “Opilasesinduste Noukogu” partner. During the first day, the participants created a solid and motivated team through icebreaking games and activities. Despite the diverse ages of the participants -from 16 to 33 years old- and the different perspectives -from academics experts, to real life experience on the topics-, these facts, initially seen as a difficulty, proved to be very useful in working with the two main focal points of this meeting, human right and sports. During the first days, the goals of the training where presented along with the historical and cultural background of the host country and city, for the Greek team to be aware of the local aspects of the issue. Simulations and games took place so that the participants could understand through their own experience what human rights are and what their violation or not means.  Concerning sports, in correlation to human rights, playing an actual sport was the best way of addressing the issue. Under this principle, the Greek participants created a team to “fairly” compete the Narva city High School Champions team, in Bumper Ball. This match apart from mutual understanding of the two teams on human rights also held an event for the community of Narva –school students and parents- to come across human rights and sports and to reflect on how these could be supported within the European Union. Very useful, in understanding the local mentality on the topics, was the half day trip to Tallin, not only due to the historical tour of the city, but also due to the discussion about Greece’s and Estonia’s current state on human rights and the sharing of opinions on European citizenship under the coordination of the Tallinn-based Open Republic NGO. 

Interaction was the main characteristic of the meeting that also proved to be the main reason for the solidity of the group. The first training of the “European Youth Citizen Position” project came to an end, with mixed emotions within participants, setting goals for project’s future and looking forward for the meeting in Greece in summer 2015!

Some lines from Dimitris Dekavallas, Greece. 

Video from the Activities in Narva, Estonia

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What? – Inter Alia is partner in the “European Youth Citizen Position” project coordinated by Opilasesinduste Noukogu, Estonia. 

The main objective of the project is to show and involve young people in the opportunities for self-development in the European Union. It will discuss four topics related to the human rights issues: European citizenship, democracy, human rights and sport.

The approach will be based on the Compass compendium

Meetings with the participants will be held as follows:

Two international meetings with the partners will be held: one in Estonia (4-9 November) and one in Greece (June 2015) in order to discuss the project tasks and effectively fulfill them.

First meeting – Human rights issues through informal methods;

Event for young people from both countries: Participants will be given freedom to choose and organize an event on the topic of human rights issues on their own.

A training course for the participants will be organized on the topic of project writing and relevant opportunities. As a result, participants will design a new project, as a continuation of the current European Youth Citizen Position.

Feedback and self-reflection will enable participants to compile a report where they will describe their needs, views and impressions in relation to the project and the Human Rights Youth Education in general. Youngsters’ development and their opinion about the European Union will be followed in short videos. Interviews with the participants will be held twice: in the beginning and in the end of the project.

Who? The project is oriented towards young people from Estonia and Greece. In total 140 youngsters will get involved and will serve as ambassadors of the roads and opportunities for young people’s self-empowerment in our world.

Inter Alia will coordinate and guide the activities in Greece.

When? The project will run for 15 months, from September 2014 to November 2015.

Where? Narva, Estonia and Greece. We will try to cover a wider area than our base in Athens. 

Why? The project aims at contributing to the acknowledgment of youth work, and its future development at local and international level.

How? The project is organized under Key Action 2 –Co-operation for Innovation and Good Practices in the framework of the Erasmus+ programme.

Participation in all local activities is free of charge. Participation in international meetings foresees a small contribution to travel costs.

Co-funded by the European Union.