Tag Archives: KA2

First ADR Kit flies to the North for the mid-term meeting

From the 8th to the 12th of June 2017, all the coordinators of the five partners of the project First ADR Kit met for  the mid-term meeting in a wonderful place in Norway, 220 km inside the arctic circle: Narvik. The Norwegian partner association, Narviksenteret, is in fact located in Narvik where they also manage the War Museum. Joakim and Ann Kristin hosted us in Beis Fjørd (12 km from Narvik) in a nice dormitory which was part of what used to be a military barrack and is now owned by the local sport association. The fact that we were hosted in a dormitory with a common kitchen contributed to create the right atmosphere to work together: the rituals of having breakfast together and to prepare the meals together positively influenced also the way we were working together.

We hadn’t seen each other from the seminar that Vicolocorto hosted here in Pesaro last March. It was not only a pleasure to meet again, but it was also a very useful occasion to revive the energy which is now necessary to accomplish the final phase of the project. First of all, we used the mid-term meeting to share with the other partners what we all have been doing regarding the project from March until June. In Pesaro the participants had created 10 workshops and every association had to test them in their local reality to improve and to adapt them to the target groups they were meant for: this was the moment to share all the results and the actual status of the workshops. Some partners struggled more than other to finalize the workshops and, in this sense, meeting with the group was very helpful: the creative atmosphere of the previous seminar was easily recreated and constructive feedback was given to everybody’s work.

Beside the workshops, we discussed dissemination strategies, the handbook and the final events since the project is entering its last phase. Another big topic was “Games”: the partners felt that we had to use the valuable time together of the mid-term meeting to finalize them. This was the right decision because we managed to work hard and to give a better shape to the two educational games that we need to develop within the project. There was and there is a good synergy within the group and what is really impressive is the fact that nobody lost interest in this project, on the contrary we discussed the option of continuing not only working with ADR, but also together.

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Besides work, thanks to the hosts and their EVS volunteers (we are very proud to be Giovanna’s Sending Organization), we also had the opportunity to visit Narvik and the museum they manage. They are really passionate about their town, its history and the history of the people that lived there. Not only they’re passionate about their past, but they also use it as a tool to fight war in contemporary society and to work towards peace. The tour in the museum was very exciting and they gave us a lot of interesting information and facts. The cherry on top was the dinner with an amazing view on the fiords. While getting to the restaurant, we discovered the city and its curious facts and places thanks to a special tour organized for us.

We had five days of intense work, cooperation and discoveries since for many of us was the first time in Norway and for sure the first time in the midnight sun. We left Narvik with a lot of tasks and new appointments: each partner will work now with its own team until the final event when everyone will meet again to close the project.

 

Virginia

 

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All in! An international path towards inclusion in youth work

“ALL IN” is the name of a newborn Strategic Partnership Project (KA2) about inclusion, financed by Erasmus+, which involves 8 partner organizations from Austria (which is also the coordinator), Belgium, Bulgaria, Italy, UK, Slovenia and Spain. The kick-off meeting took place in Graz, Austria, from the 21st of May to the 24th during which all the partners had the opportunity to meet and to get to know each other in person after a simple e-mail communication.

The point of the meeting was mainly to introduce the project, to share ideas and opinions on what we all thought about inclusion and to define the responsibilities among the partners. It is always a pleasure to meet and talk face to face with the partners with whom you will work for two years: you need to build trust and create a common ground from which you can start to work together.

All the partner organizations work in different fields of youth work in which there’s anyway a real need to foster inclusion. Nowadays the term inclusion is used by many people and has become a very fashionable concept. But what is actually inclusion? What do we mean by that? This is the starting point of the project: the intention is to fill the gap in the actual understanding of inclusion (include from where, into what and including whom), and to give as a consequence practical skills and support to youth workers in order to implement the concept into reality and to make their work more inclusive.

For this reason, the goal of the project is to develop and test training modules about inclusive approach to all in youth work. Each organization has the duty to create a module with the support materials aimed at  training actual or future leaders, youth workers and all the person working with young people in general. In order to create really inclusive modules, field research is the starting point: each partner has to understand what are the standards nowadays as regards inclusion in its own country, in order to work in the right direction. The training module is seen here as “innovation, because it will be create in the way that it can reach different target groups within youth field”, as the coordinators say. The modules will consists, in fact, of several blocks and people will be able to choose and to attend what is necessary for them.

 

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All the modules created will be tested and collected in a training manual which will be used to train a pool of youth workers to inclusiveness. What the creators of the project would like to achieve is that this could become a certain standard in the education of people involved in youth work. Of course, it’s just the beginning of the project and there’s a lot of work ahead. The atmosphere of the meeting was anyway very positive: the group left Graz with a lot of ideas and good intentions, a schedule to follow, and the plan to meet again in Scotland next November to report the first results. As Vicolocorto we are very proud to be part of this process… let’s make youth work more inclusive!

 

Virginia

 

The First ADR Kit comes into practice!

After the intense week in Pesaro in March, when all the participants had the opportunity of creating their workshops, now the time has come for implementing the workshop in the target groups they were created for. Each national group has created two workshops which have to be tested in different contexts. The Italian participants from Vicolocorto Federica, Marzia and Virginia, like the other participants, had created two workshops during the seminar: the first one is called Exploring the Agreement and the second one Dealing with emotions.

Exploring Agreement is a workshop that focuses on the existence of conflicts and the opportunity of finding a Zone Of Possible Agreement (ZOPA) between the persons involved. In order to help the participants to gradually understand what ZOPA is, the Italian group designed two kinds of interrelated activities. First of all, the participants are divided in two groups and they are given a card with their positions: the situation that is handed out in the card changes according to the target group and is usually something that they may have experienced in their daily or work life, so that it should be easy for them to imagine how to feel. The card is meant in fact to help them to feel the conflict with the aim of confronting the other team. The second phase of the workshop is the actual exploration of possible agreement through the use of a board game: battleship. Thanks to the game, they can find the ZOPA and learn more about the chances they have to overcome conflicts. The workshop ends with an evaluation phase: the participants have to answer two questions regarding their feelings and their learning outcomes after the workshop; they have to write their answers on sticky notes and then share with the others.

The workshop Dealing with emotions is characterized by three main phases: first all, the participants are helped to give a name to their emotions; secondly, they make the experience of mishandling their and the others’ emotions in a specific situation; finally, they can practice how to give time and space to feelings. To explore the topic, the participants have to improvise a little sketch twice: the first time, they have to mishandle it; the second time they have to show how to deal with emotions in the best way.

The workshop have been tested 4 times on the 8th of May and as target group were selected young volunteers of the National Civil Service who are active for 12 months in the Municipality of Senigallia, aged between 18 and 29.

The volunteers have been split into two smaller groups, homogeneous in terms of work-related daily activities, and this gave the chance to test each workshop on two different groups.

The first (morning) was a mixed group as it was composed of volunteers belonging to different projects: some of them are volunteers in the library, some others in tourist information centers, but they had in common that they usually engage in activities of front office.

The second group (afternoon) was composed of young volunteers that belonged to the same project: they work with the elderly, usually offering them personal assistance and driving them when they need it, so they engage in personal aid relationships

The trainers delivered both workshops with one group in the morning (4 hours) and with the other in the afternoon (4 hours), and the participants responded differently to the activities, so it required adjustments and improvements.

Thanks to this intense day of test, the trainers had many interesting and important feedbacks and suggestions on how to integrate and improve their workshops. First of all, they understood that each group has its own dynamics and that an energizer is always a good way to start the workshop and to create harmony inside a group. Then, they adjusted the time given to each activity in order to make them really work as they were designed for: in the first group the fear of not having enough time made them rush some moments that, on the contrary, needed more time to work well. Moreover, they tested the activities in different setting to examine their flexibility so that the workshops could be delivered in every conditions. They integrated some changes to the workshops also before the second group, and the result was far better than in the first group. Anyway, the learning outcomes that all the participants shared made the trainers realize the fact that they really did a good job. Before the end of the month some more test are scheduled, and the target group will change again so that they can have a broader vision and make the workshop even more complete.