Page 1

Methods and examples of youth work in the field of youth informing and counselling



Author: Goran Jelenić Print and graphic design by: Fist, Borovo Year and place of publishing: 2016. Vukovar, Croatia For the English translation: In consultation with David Irving

Methods and examples of youth work in the field of youth informing and counselling in Croatia and The Netherlands

The „Job shadowing“ project was designed in the context of continuous adjustment to young people's needs and ambitions, given the trends they follow and the changeable habits they have. With the financial support of EU through Program Erasmus+ it was implemented to support youth information workers, helping them acquire new knowledge, skills and working methods in the field of youth information and counselling, which they can use in practice. To bring this about a job shadowing was organized for PRONI Centre for Social Education employees, within their partner organization, JONG Rotterdam in The Netherlands, where they gained experience. This was particularly important for youth information workers of PRONI's Youth Information Centres from Osijek, Vukovar and Sisak. At the same time it was an opportunity to design the „Manual of Methods and examples of youth work in the field of youth information and counselling in Croatia and The Netherlands“ This document we would now like to share with civil society organizations in Croatia, and The Netherlands, as well as across Europe, especially with those implementing youth information and counselling activities, and particularly through Youth information centres. We would like to express our gratitude to our partner organization for provided support in project implementation and in designing of this Manual. Also, we would like to thank all civil society organizations which by sharing their examples of good practice enabled further dissemination and implementation of working methods, and thus contributed to raising the standard in quality of working with young people in the field of information and counselling.

Principle: With increasingly demanding social trends, fast changes in the labour market, and more and more difficult economic situation influencing the global population, and the resultant consequences, especially among young people, the field of information and counselling became recognized in society ( in education, employment, active citizenship and participation, social policy, culture and leisure time, mobility, etc.) As such it was highlighted in resolutions of the Council of Europe, while Youth Information Centres became important stakeholders in society in all European countries, especially in EU member states.

Why Youth Information and Counselling? CRO: Due to unemployment, young people are often disoriented, having no ideas what to do or in which way to improve their status and quality of life, and therefore in most cases are choosing to move to bigger and „healthier“ communities in Croatia, as well as abroad. Additionally, within the defined age range of youth, 15 to 30, there are visible differences in primary needs. Details of those visiting particular news, articles and information published on web or Social media of Youth Information Centres show that those who are still high school pupils seek information relevant for further education, leisure time and youth culture, while students, or those planning to study, seek information connected with scholarship, their studies, mobility of students and similar. Among youth, there is a group trying to get involved in the labour market more readily, and therefore the information they seek most is connected with the possibilities of additional educational programmes (formal and non-formal), gaining work experience and additional improvement, involvement in civil society organization, volunteering, etc. Similar conclusions come about through continuous contact with young people coming to Youth Information Centres or participating in activities organized in order to raise their level of understanding of a particular field or topic.

NL: Modern western society, to which The Netherlands belongs, with all its advantages, definitely is not isolated from the problems that young people face, especially after school time and during the process of becoming independent from their parents. At that time, in most cases, young people start to live in joint residential units, seek jobs and a chance for an improved quality of life. Because of a natural impulse for independence, and unexpected events and incompletely considered life decisions (their own and others), certain consequences are faced by young people. These are difficult to manage especially without outside help. Furthermore, marginalised groups of young people, such as those with socially unacceptable behaviour or with a migrant background, are facing additional problems. Work with them is much harder and more demanding, because in most cases those young people are not even registered with the system, and chances for resolving their specific issues are decreased. In order to address this issue, 25 years ago Dutch society invented the concept of direct youth information and counselling work, and so, today, Youth Information Centres (JIP) with all available services and materials, notably with their mobile teams working with young people in the places where they gather, have become recognized resources for youth information and counselling in important life fields such as health protection, housing and budgetting, employment, etc.

Taking into consideration these various different needs and situations of young people, youth information and counselling have become essential and vital work both for personal and professional development, as well as for primary engagement of young people into society. This is especially true of those belonging to groups defined as marginalized. Improvement in youth information and counselling In order to fulfil the role and fully be at the disposal of young people, by designing and sharing this Manual among civil society organizations who deal with youth information and counselling work, we intend additionally to motivate Youth information workers to use new methods in daily work. Particularly, we direct this towards youth information workers focused on young people who will stay and settle in their local communities, those who might choose among a variety of possibilities on offer.

Youth Information Centre Rotterdam

Methods of Youth Work

PRONI CENTRE FOR SOCIAL EDUCATION Regional Youth Information Centre Osijek

info za mlade


Kralja Zvonimira 15, 31000 Osijek Contacts: +385/31-283-056; F: Info-centar za mlade Osijek Leader – Zdenka Radić Established: 2007

Methods of informing: Indoor- Info-desk for delivering individual services to the beneficiaries, free internet access and usage of equipment, access to informational and educational materials, group informing (workshops, lectures, presentations...), individual counselling and psychological support Outdoor- Focus groups, Youth information fairs, school visits and visits to youth in rural communities (info caravans, peer discussions), participation and co-organization of different public (local, national, European) events, media (e.g. radio shows on Student radio) On-line - Web and Facebook page

Highlighted: Individual approach „face to face“- we believe that this is the most efficient method, especially because it can directly help young people in finding and adjusting information according to their needs. Additionally, this method enables direct contact, repeated visits and possibilities for helping youth in developing social skills, personal development and engagement in community development.

PRONI CENTRE FOR SOCIAL EDUCATION Youth Information Centre Vukovar

info za mlade Vukovar

204. vukovarske brigade 43, 32000 Vukovar Contacts: +385/32-450-106 F: Info-centar Za Mlade Vukovar Leader – Karolina Šoš Živanović Established: 2009

Methods of informing: Indoor - Info desk for individual informing and counselling, free internet access and office equipment, info board "Inform yourself", informational and educational materials, info presentations, group informing and individual counselling Outdoor - Info presentations, info sessions, travelling info desk, 5 info points on different city locations, Youth information day, community actions On-line - Web and Facebook page, e-mail, YouTube channel, on-line info sessions

Highlighted: 1. On-line info sessions – by creating and sharing short video presentations, animations and movies through internet and YouTube channel (for those involved the most acceptable way of communication), on-line sessions aim at easier introduction of different themes to young people. 2. Info sessions -informative group workshops and presentations directly influence young people's acquaintance with current themes.

BEBRINA YOUTH ASSOCIATION Local Youth Information Centre Bebrina

Lokalni info centar za mlade


Bebrina 81, 35254 Bebrina Contacts: +385/99-409 1275; F: Lokalni info centar za mlade Bebrina Leader – Martina Stepić Established: 2014

Methods of informing: Indoor - Educative methods, Team – cooperative learning of Team of Experts, Learning by doing Outdoor - Youth information fair, Public advocacy forums, Media promotion (radio, newspaper, TV) On-line - Facebook, e-mail

Highlighted: Learning by doing (Educational method) – Bebrina Youth Association Team of Experts implements educations for their members and beneficiaries, thus transferring gained knowledge and experience in fields important in working with youth, group and team work, team mediation, communication and presentation skills, social entrepreneurship, rural development, youth guaranty, EU, writing and implementation of projects, youth policies, etc.


info centar mogućnosti

AFFIRMATION OF YOUTH IN SOCIETY „Impress“ DARUVAR Info Centre of Possibilities


Ivana Zajca 3, 43500 Daruvar Contacts: +385/98-953-7002;;; F: Info Centar Mogućnosti Leader – Dubravko Šopar Established: 2016

Methods of informing: Indoor- Individual, group, World cafe, creative workshops, multimedia, discussions, debates, brain-storming, peer support, "info board", info corner with leaflets/newspapers, mini library Outdoor - Group, exhibition stands, presentations in educational institutions, flash-mobs, media and interviews (TV, radio, newspapers), non-formal talks, leaflets, treasure hunt, round tables, debates, cooperation with other civil society organization in the region On-line - Portal, Facebook s page, e-mail, skype

Highlighted: Peer support - method of involving two sides of youth willing to share knowledge of some field and how to seek needed information. In this way, young people supported by Youth information centre mentors, explore topics more deeply and support each other in informing themselves. This method encourages young people in more active participation in society.

PRONI Centre for Social Education Youth Information Centre Sisak

info za mlade


Perivoj Viktorovac bb, 44000 Sisak Contacts: +385/44-880-826; +385/91-545-9630;; F: ICM Sisak Leader – Igor Kovač Established: 2009

Methods of informing: Indoor- Interactive work with beneficiaries/visitors, support in information seeking, free usage of services and equipment: printing, scanning, sending e-mails, etc., education and workshops, voluntary actions (preparation of volunteer before actions, organizing and providing volunteering positions), educational activities according to current projects, meetings, forums, etc. Outdoor- Promotional actions according to current projects, promotional stands, celebration of relevant European and world dates, association and informing fairs, info points On-line - Selecting interesting topics for youth, promotional notifications according to current projects, providing information connected with the specific themes (according to 7 chapters of National Youth Policy), publishing monthly bulletin about youth employment

Highlighted: Direct approach to youth – face to face contact and providing specific themes of information which young people seek, seminars, workshops and educations. On-line work – providing on-line information according to e-mail requests (direct answers) and providing articles and information about youth relevant themes by using blog-web information channel.


Vjekoslava Venka 3, 44450 Hrvatska Dubica Contacts: +385/98-188-2354; F: Info centar za mlade Hrvatska Dubica Leader – Željka Vuković Established: 2015

Methods of informing: Indoor- Educative and creative workshops, different information materials such as leaflets and posters, counselling "one on one" On-line - Providing on-line information from different portals, web pages, centres and youth information centres, on specific issues, enabled direct communication through email

Highlighted: Counselling and informing through educative workshops carried out in Youth information centre, where discussion takes place on issues regardless of connection to school, job or any other. By volunteering on different seminars young people, together with their leaders, learn how to select necessary information, especially in cases where they are unsure how to find sources. They also learn how to use material already accessed. At the same time, by sharing their own ideas they find solutions for resolving specific issues.



Trg svete Jelene 6, 49210 Zabok Contacts: +385/49-222-635; F: Mreža udruga Zagor / T: @zagorinfo Leader – Jelena Knjaz Established: 2014

Methods of informing: Indoor- Information desk, info wall, leaflet, brochures, focus groups, lectures, workshops, free computer access, publications, face-to-face Outdoor- Publication in printed and electronic media, radio shows, lectures and workshops, public forums and actions, Fair of associations, participation in working groups of local and regional authorities and steering boards, video animations, radio jingles, leaflets, brochures, informing by telephone, surveys, info stands, face-to-face On-line - Facebook and web page, twitter

Highlighted: Lectures, workshops and focus groups – are example of „face-to-face“ work with young people, because in this way they learn and find out accurate information in their field of interest. Additionally, by working in this way we teach and inform young people about employment (self-employment, how to present themselves at the job interview, how to write CV, etc.), mobility (through Eurodesk, about Erasmus+ and other possibilities), participation in decisionmaking processes, etc.), and other important fields for young people.

INFO ZONE Regional Youth Information Centre Info zona

Jerina 1, 21000 Split Contacts: +385/21-339-909;; F: Info zona Leader – Darko Čop Established: 2008


Methods of informing: Indoor- Presentations of different youth programmes, public forums, round tables, educations, meetings, etc. Outdoor - info connection (Info "kopÄ?a") in high schools, activities of non-formal education based on experiential and peer informing, multimedia events in places where young people gather. On-line - Youth portal (; Radio show - Info zone on radio, video reportage; Info zone YouTube channel, You Tube stream of certain events from our premises aiming at reaching wider youth population

Highlighted: Peer informing - transferring information, as well as experience in places where young people gather (schools, public places, cafĂŠs and clubs, etc.). Informing through non-profit media programme - portal, radio shows, printed magazines, YouTube channel with audio/video contents.

YOUTH IN EUROPEAN UNION „Point – Youth Information Centre“

Prilaz tvornici 41, 22000 Šibenik Contacts: +385/22-340-104; Leader – Vinko Livaković Established: 2014

Methods of informing:

Indoor- Advising young people

Outdoor- 5 info points regularly updated, lectures, workshops, public forums, round tables, info desks On-line - Dissemination of newsletters

Highlighted: Through info points which are regularly updated weekly with new and accurate information, young people are enabled to be in touch with necessary relevant information of their interest. By providing Lectures with various themes (mobility, Youth guarantee, social entrepreneurship, etc.) we are aiming to integrate young people in social processes, to enhance and help them to recognize their own values and potential in order to contribute to the community to which they belong and to be creators of a better and more just world in the future.

ZUM ASSOCIATION Youth Information centre Pula

Kandlerova 10, 52 100 Pula Contacts: +385/52-211-364; +385/99-252-9488; +385/98-1673-494; F: Info-centar za mlade Pula Leader – Zorica Višković Established: 2006

Methods of informing: Indoor- Talks and discussions, non-formal educational methods (energizers, social games aiming at better introducing of each other and creation of relaxed atmosphere)

Outdoor- Dissemination of youth magazine "3ska", implementation of info caravans in schools and university, presenting on educations, informing in parks

On-line - Communication channels: Web and Facebook page, e-bulletin INFOZUM, ZUM YouTube channel, e-mail

Highlighted: Informative caravans – in cooperation with schools, universities and other interested stakeholders, we inform young people in 15 to 20 minutes about various themes of interest. After the event, counselling and further information sessions are organized in the premises of Youth information centre. „Pop-up“ informing – short actions on places where youth gather. In evening hours our team visit public places where gather a large number of youth. In joining them, we deliver short information, leaflets and useful promotional materials.

CARPE DIEM the association for the promotion and development of creative and social potential of children, youth and adults Youth Information centre of Karlovac County

Maksimilijana Vrhovca 13, 47000 Karlovac Contacts: +385/47-422-347, +385/91-422-3471 F: Info centar za mlade Karlovačke županije Leader – Marko Petančić Established: 2009

Methods of informing: Indoor- Group and individual informing through workshops, round tables and forums, personally (face to face), by telephone, e-maila

Outdoor- Mobile info points: Info bike - visits locations and events where young people are Info desk in schools (once a week) and on locations and events where young people are gathering On-line - Youth Info portal – publishing of articles, event calendar, blog

Highlighted: 1. Informing through Youth info portal of Karlovac County. This covers all fields of youth action (culture, sport, education, activism, volunteering, employment and entrepreneurship, youth and EU, health, social engagement). It emphasizes events in local communities and possibilities for young people offered in local communities, but also in wider Croatia and the EU. 2. Informing through mobile points – mobile points are places where mobile stands with promotional, informative and educational materials are put up. Mobile points are organized temporarily as the need arises on spaces where young people gather (concerts, festivals and other events of youth interest) and in cooperation with high schools.


Vijverhofstraat 47, 3032 SB, Rotterdam Contacts: +31/10-436-5730 JIP Rotterdam Leader – Els Stam Established: 1992

Methods of informing: Indoor- Group and individual youth informing and counselling through direct conversation with beneficiaries, workshops and trainings, as well as by telephone, e-mail and WhatsApp. application Outdoor- Mobile teams, Info bus, workshops in schools and on public places where young people gather. On-line - Web i facebook page of Youth information centre

Highlighted: 1. Informing by Info bus – This visits young people who are not in contact or not directly involved with the services of information and counselling provided in Youth information centre. Located in front of high schools, inside the Info bus, the Youth leaders inform young people about various themes, personally, by using leaflets and/or video presentations. 2. Geldmattie – method which through peer education and providing support in budget controlling helps young people in solving their financial problems. In implementation of this method a certain number of teams participate (at this moment 12), and each of them works with previously selected youth whom they educate, follow and support during a period in order to overcome financial difficulties.

Info bus, Rotterdam

Bicycle repairing workshop „Bike shop“ Rotterdam and Gouda


Jan Verzwollesteaat 2a, 2800, Gouda Contacts: +31/10-436-5730 F: JONG GOUDA Leader – Dick Smit Established: 1992

Methods of informing: Indoor- Group youth informing and counselling through workshops with special emphasize in gathering of specific society groups of young people Outdoor - Street and detached youth work in places where young people gather by special mobile teams

Highlighted: Bicycle repair workshop „Bike shop“– this method of working with young people aims at developing working habits and skills of young people with financial and educational difficulties through repairing bicycles. Young people who are chosen to take part in „Bike shop“ can stay there for a maximum of two years and earn a symbolic fee for job done. During their participation the workshop leader works on their socialization by intensively informing and counselling them in the fields of budgeting, enrolling into educational system and/or further training and involvement in labour market.

Examples of Best Practise

Info bicycle is a form of mobile info point, but its purpose, besides informing young people, is collecting information about young peoples' needs. Info bicycle has a box for questions where each young person can put a question to which he/she needs the answer. There is a bucket with promotional and informative printed materials. Questions can be written on prepared templates and the young person can choose whether he/she wants to get the answer in written form, personally, or publicly through youth information portal. In the case that the answer needs to be provided personally, then a personal contact is taken up. Info bicycle, staffed by volunteers specially educated for communication and work with youth, is active from March to November.

Youth Information Day in Vukovar “VuMi” the aim of Youth information day is to present to young people in one place programmes, activities and services of relevant institutions and associations from the city of Vukovar that deal with young people or are in indirect contact with them. “VuMi” is designed as one-day activity of informing young people through their direct participation in info sessions and/or presentations of institutions and associations on which they would have opportunity to take promotional materials and be informed about programmes and activities prepared for them. They can talk with representatives of institutions and associations and in these ways get additional information or directly enrol into some programmes and activities on offer.

info za mlade Vukovar

Pop-up" information


These are short actions of information in places where young people gather. Youth information workers join young people and deliver short information, leaflets and useful promotional materials.

A special corner on web page of Youth information centre Sisak enables young people to get accurate information more easily, about various procedures to be followed when making personal documents (e.g. passport, ID, driving licence). Also this corner serves as a guideline for those who finished school and need to follow some legislative procedure, such as those needed entering the labour market.

Info connection (Info kopÄ?a) Specific method of group information, in most cases high school pupils. It is dynamic, fast and efficient: in just one school hour (45 minutes) several relevant life themes are presented to youth. This method is based on Pecha Kucha concept where every presenter has maximum 20 slides (mostly photos with minimum text) each lasting maximum 20 second, which means that every presenter for his/her presentation has a maximum of 400 seconds (6 minutes and 40 seconds). The aim of this method is to present different themes and useful information to young people in an interesting and amusing way, as well as to enhance and motivate young people for active participation, taking initiative, realisation of their own ideas and improvement in personal competences and abilities.



info za mlade Osijek

Mobile Youth Information Fair – a rented, placarded city bus which runs on a variety of urban and suburban routes in which WI FI connection is available to the passengers. The entry code id „klik“ on Youth information centre Osijek web page, directly connects passengers to the category where they can be informed about activities of organizations and institutions that deal with youth in that category. With this method, the use of fixed stands is replaced by easier access to information. The entry code can be adjusted according to accurate events and themes, as was done during European campaign “Time to move, International Day of Tolerance, Month of fighting against addiction,” etc. Besides this, the bus passengers can inform themselves by using „Elevator pitch“ method – by using microphone and loudspeakers. In a short time (a few stops) the basic information is provided in a simple way. The aim of this method is to inform a larger number of young people about various themes in a different and more interesting way.

Street work Work with marginalised and problematic youth – aims at protecting the most vulnerable people – mostly youth – and to give them means to protect themselves. The challenge to youth workers who work on the „street“ is to work with young people who live in difficult conditions and who suffer multiple forms of exclusion. For them, the youth worker is the first and last link in chain of education and social assistance. With this method, the building of self-esteem and developing personal skills takes place with target group members, leading to their easier participation in social life. Nekoliko su važnih koraka u ovoj metodi rada: 1. Preliminary investigation – collecting information about target group 2. Field research – dialogue with those involved, visiting the location at times when no youth are there with the purpose of better understanding of their habits 3. Making contact with young people – introducing who you are and why you are here 4. Establishing closer relationship – individual or group, with the purpose of trust building and intention of assistance providing 5. Providing help and assistance 6. Process control, evaluation and adjustment to specific situations

Detached youth work This differs from the usual concept of youth work, since it is dedicated to young people on their „territory“. Therefore youth workers work with young people at places which they choose such as street, café, shopping centre, etc., actually in any place they are. The contact itself is happening on the field, where development of relationship is happening too, aiming at further work with young people. The key point of detached youth work is its flexibility. There is the advantage of having youth workers who are not burdened with responsibility for premises, but can focus on the best way of recognizing young people's needs in places where they hang out. „As a street youth worker, you become recognised as a landmark or reference etached youth work point, and so continuity is important“.

and more...

„Informing youth is not an individual obligation, but requires a whole organization of people with different knowledge from various fields of work, thus contributing more strongly to dissemination of wider spectrum of themes in the field of youth information and counselling“ „Implementing methods of certain activities depends on target group profile, age range and needs of young people“


Premises Although there are different methods of work, indoor in Youth information centre, outdoor or by using on-line communication tools, the interior of the Youth information centre and especially its accessibility, by location as well as for those with disabilities, is very important for the development of a complete service. Accessible and well presented premises, with clearly indicated services and available materials, in which different promotional and educational activities can be organized gives additional quality to youth information and counselling.

The importance of cross-sector cooperation: The advisory board is example of best practice of networking which proof that cross-sector cooperation is important for improvement of programmes, activities and services for youth. The need of this target group is primarily based on sharing the information in the field of youth, and faster flow of information towards final beneficiaries - youth. Therefore, aiming at improving flow and quality of information to youth at local level, in 2009 PRONI Centre for Social Education within the Youth information centres in Osijek, Vukovar and Sisak, has established Cross-sector advisory boards of representatives of different institutions and civil society organization from the local community in which Youth information centre in active. From its inception, the advisory board was recognized as an excellent city „network“ of people who work with young people. Information flowed faster from institutions towards civil society organizations and vice verse, thus reaching a larger number of young people more quickly, not the case previously. This cooperation of different local community stakeholders enabled young people to acquire from a Youth information centre in one place, accurate and timely information of a wider spectrum, so that they can select according to their personal needs.

The Manual is prepared by:



Co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union. The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute endorsement of the contents whic reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.


Methods and examples of youth work in the field of youth information and counselling  

Youth information and counselling work in Croatia and The Netherlands

Methods and examples of youth work in the field of youth information and counselling  

Youth information and counselling work in Croatia and The Netherlands