Europe On a Doorstep
#EUdoor Europe On a Doorstep
Title Eudoor — Europe On a Doorstep
Text Ana Rita Carneiro + Daniel Ribeiro + Katheryna Makogon + Maria Inês Mota + Miguel Carneiro + Vojislav Vujic
Edition Freguesia de Vila Boa do Bispo
Editorial Project Miguel Ribeiro + Pedro Castro
Chapter 01 The #EUdoor Project
Chapter 02 Working towards a more engaged youth
Chapter 03 Engaging youth and promoting local and european citizenship
Spaces to be young and engaged
Youthful and community engaging ideas
Youth participation made real
Campaigns by and for youth
Chapter 04 Funding opportunities worth knowing
INTRODUCTION Hi and thank you, for getting in touch with the Europe On a Doorstep #EUdoor – project cofunded by the Europe for Citizens programme from the European Commission. ¶ The executive team, all the partners and participants are very glad to share their work, ideas, projects and insights with you. If you have reached us through our publication or via online channels, it means that you are focused on youth engagement, youth participation, active citizenship and Europe. Well, then it means that your concerns are our concerns as well. ¶ This publication aims at sharing good ideas with youth workers, local leaders, youth and political agents that might turn them into relevant tools to create engaging, dynamic and youthful projects that contribute to a more active citizenship in their communities. We hope to encompass the good practices that the network of towns involved in the #EUdoor project shared and developed in order to make it feasible in your community among your youngest citizens. ¶ To do so we organized those good practices and examples in four major categories: 1) spaces to be young and engaged, 2) youthful and community engaging ideas, 3) youth participation made real and 4) campaigns by and for youth. You can find them in Chapter 3. ¶ Moreover, we wanted to share with you examples of activities executed during this project by it’s partners, plus some relevant tips for campaigns on the European Union’s values and principles awareness that could be helpful to reach broader audiences and convey our message in a more effective way. Chapter 2 would be the choice if that’s what you are after. ¶ We could not finish this publication without sharing with you relevant funding instruments that could be relevant to your cause. You can find them in Chapter 4. ¶ We sincerely hope that you find this publication and our website (eudoor.eu) helpful and don’t be a stranger, so… Get in touch with us, we will be more than glad to help. Sincerely, The #EUdoor team
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THE #EUDOOR PROJECT Traveling from Milano to Lugano, do you cross the passport and customs control? What is the difference between European Council and the Council of Europe? Where are the European borders? Why doesn’t Bulgaria use Euro, but Montenegro does? Will you vote on the EU elections in 2019? We have asked these questions to the citizens of our communities and it looks like we have failed to educate new generations of Europeans about their home. ¶ This was the starting point for the Europe On a Doorstep project (#EUdoor) and the core motivation to promote citizenship and improve conditions for civic and democratic participation at both the European Union and the local level. ¶ #EUdoor aims at improving capacities of involved communities to promote European citizenship, improving skills for community leaders to identify, design and implement local activities in cooperation with stakeholders, which will provide information to citizens about the European union (EU), its structure, decision making process, values and the ways of active participation.
On infographic you can check the timeline of the project.
Outset Meeting Portugal –– February EU Briefing Training Poland –– April Seminar EU awareness Greece –– June Study Visit Estonia –– October #EUdoor Conference Serbia –– November
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Evaluation Meeting Macedonia –– February
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The #EUdoor project encompasses a diverse group of partners that you can consult on the right and get in touch through the available contacts on the project’s website: eudoor.eu Get in touch: Kate, Miguel and Voja firstname.lastname@example.org
Associatia Super Tinery Romania
CET Platform Hellas Greece
CET Platform Serbia Serbia
Comune di Asti Italy
Daugavpils Pilsetas Dome Latvia
Institute for Social Integration Bulgaria
Municipality of Bitola Macedonia
Municipality of Legrad Croatia
Nasze Rio Stowarzyszenie Poland
Vila Boa do Bispo Portugal
Youth Senate Tallinn Estonia P —— 10
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WORKING TOWARDS A MORE ENGAGED YOUTH Campaigning for European awareness in your community European awareness, European citizenship, European values and other similar topics are more controversial than ever in many communities around Europe while Euroscepticism is growing. ¶ At the same time, it’s kind of obvious for everyone the relevance of these terms… Right? Well, not quite right! The truth is that things are becoming harder and harder to advocate for the European project and it’s values. So, here are four main tasks and some tips for each political and social campaign that you may run successfully in your community:
Make sure that in the plan of your campaign you foresee all four phases and address them effectovely. Failing to do one or more of them may lead to failure of the whole campaign.
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I do not care but looks like i'm your main target group
Collect information about your community: population, age structure, education and occupation structure, social status, opinion, etc. Try to find information about similar campaigns before. Target organizations, institutions and other stakeholders that may be interested in your campaign and may help you: every single partner is valuable. In this phase you can use public information, online and offline surveys, focus groups and many other methods.Depending on the size of your campaign you may have to collect more or less information. It will help you to create your messages in the following phases of the campaign.
This is your main target group. The goal of your campaign and your main task is to make them happy. How big is this group? In average, this group is 60% of society, depending on the topic. If you ever heard about polarization of the society regarding some topic, that is happening when there is more happy and sad faces then those indifferent. Remember the size of this group, we will compare it with another group later. Once you have identified your target group and know as accurately as possible which citizens in your community fit in each attitude and opinion-group regarding your topic, it is time to start another phase of the campaign.
Identification Once we know how many people support your opinion, how many people are against it and how many people are indifferent, as well as how many of them are young or highly educated or unemployed, it is time to identify citizens in your community and group them in one of three main target groups.
I support you People that support you and agree with you are not your target group. Very often we make that mistake and communicate only with them. They should be used to spread our word with other citizens, tell us important information about their friends and neighbours, help as volunteers, etc. We do not focus our campaign on them, but we don’t ignore them, too. It is important to keep them informed, communicate with them and cooperate with them.
Communication This is the phase in which you send your message to your target group using different channels of communication. It can be: posters, online ads, public events, workshops, articles in media, press releases and many different other ways to reach your target group. Figuring out which one is the best for you is a key achievement. When creating messages make sure that your message has the following characteristics:
CLEAR People receive hundreds of messages each day in various ways. If your message is long, complicated and confusing, citizens will never engage with it. CONSISTENT This means that the message must be repeated as many times as possible.
UNIQUE Your message must be different from other’s messages.
People that disagree with you are not your main target group either. Those, most probably Eurosceptics, can waste our resources and the chance of making them support you are very low. Anyway, you should be aware about their attitude and be ready to protect yourself from their attacks.
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CONVINCING Citizens must feel i tis a good message and be convinced that it is real.
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TRUTHFUL It is easy to lie, but “A lie has short legs”. IMPORTANT Formulate a message that really worries citizens, what is really important or significant for them.
Make sure that you are aware about the pyramid of participation in society:
1% Decision makers
5% Influencing actors
15% Informed citizens
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Only 1% of each society are decision makers: members or parliament, ministers, president and all other people the have power to decide how our public money will be spent. 5% of people are those that can influence decision makers: political parties, media, celebrities, civil society organizations, religious organizations, lobbyists and others. Another 15% are those that cannot influence decision makers but have awareness of what is going on in the community. They are informed, they follow news, they most probably already have strong opinions regarding the topic of your campaign. Finally, the large majority of the society is not informed or do not care much. They are your target group! They are biggest part of society! Remember the three main target groups we spoke about in identification! Most of the indifferent citizens are in this group of people who are not informed and can’t influence decision makers. Your task is to find the best way to reach them, to transfer your message to them. When it comes to social media most probably you will reach the upper part of the pyramid using Twitter. Instagram will be useful for younger citizens and those in between of the pyramid while Facebook is a great tool to find those that are your main target group. Whichever social media or online channel of communication you decide to use, make sure that the message that you are sending not only meets the above mentioned criteria, but also motivates people to share it with their friends. ¶ Also, please remeber the concept of Six degrees of separation! This is the idea that all people are six, or fewer, social connections away from each other. Often called as 6 Handshakes rule. As a result, a chain of "a friend of a friend" statements can be made to connect any two people in a maximum of six steps. There is na estimation that the avarege separation among users on Facebook is 3.5. This shows the power of “share” in an online campaign. ¶ Finally, during your campain you may need to defend yourself, particulary from the target group that’s against your oppinion, statemens and values. Those sad faces that we were talinkg about during phase of identification! Therefore, you should also prepare your message box:
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Message Box when there are opponents
You on Your Opponents
Your Opponents on You
What you will say
Your Opponents on Themselves
What you may need to answer
You on You
Motivation This is final the phase of each campaign. You can perfectly do all previous phases, learn everything that you can about your community, identify every single citizen, use all resources to communicate your message with them, defend yourself from all attacks… But if you fail to do the final phase, effects of the whole campaign may be disappointing. Therefore, your final activity should be a set of events, actions and special messages that will motivate your target group to act. It can be a simple phone call reminding about the event that you are organizing, a letter with na invitation to come and sign a petition that you are making or anything else that will actually make them contribute to your goals. ¶ Much more would we need to say… But there many things that you can figure out just by doing… So, get things moving and good luck!
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Some ideas to inspire you A
From Greece comes the picture contest Some of the most powerful means for organizations to get their message across are social media and multimedia content. With this in mind, CET Platform Hellas did a photo contest within the Trikala community to promote voting in the European elections of 2019! ¶ The focus and the goal were clear: Engage with youth and motivate them to vote in the European elections of 2019. To get there, the NGO harnessed the potential of social media and their dynamic and relevant community around their facebook page in particular. With more than 1600 followers, CET Platform Hellas engaged with more than 7500 users through the posts of the contest whilst communicating the importance of voting in the European election. To top that, the initiative promoted the taste for photography and shed light over the participating photographers by promoting the ones that answered the call and exposing them on social media and on their locally organized activities. ¶ Needless to say that all of this wouldn’t be possible without interesting incentives beyond the promotion of photographers and their photos… So CET Platform Hellas offered, as a prize, invitations to participate in an international activity of the winner’s choice. With this prizes the NGO made the contest even more interesting for participants whilst sharing the opportunity to engage in international activities that… Guess what… Contribute to a broader understanding of Europe and to increase the sense of belonging to the European project… So, kind of a win-win situation for everybody! Moreover, the NGO launched an online survey to “feel” the young citizen’s intentions to vote in the EU elections and what were their main concerns and interests regarding Europe. This survey produced 585 answers and reached more than 14500 people online, proving itself as a valid and interesting instrument that could easily be applied in a wide variety of topics.
The voting station to promote participation from Bulgaria The Institute for Social Integration in Bulgaria (ISI Bulgaria) is a very dynamic and impactful NGO in the field of democracy, participation and transparency all over the country. With their agenda in full swing during 2019, the European Parliament elections were a mandatory date to be celebrated and to engage with citizens. Tagging along the This Time I’m Voting Europe-wide campaign (read more about it on Chapter 3), ISI Bulgaria organized a fictional voting station with a special ballot: designed by the This Time I’m Voting Campaign with a blank space to complete the sentence “This Time I’m Voting for”. ¶ The idea was to stimulate citizen’s reflections on their reasons to vote in the European elections and with this reflection promote the European values and, possibly, motivate citizens to advocate for the European project amongst their fellow citizens and within their community. ¶ Remember the 6 Handshakes Rule mentioned above?! Well… ISI Bulgaria brought the symbolic voting act along with the motivationsfrom the symbolic voters to the social media world and they started spreading the message. So the physical act and event got digital wings and spread out through digital Bulgaria to thousands of potential voters. ¶ The message was clear and coherent with the European-level campaign and ISI Bulgaria gave it a Bulgaria-wide boost through a symbolic voting session and social media campaigning…
facebook.com/cetplatformgr • cetplatformgr.com
facebook.com/Institute.ISI • isi-bg.org
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ENGAGING YOUTH AND PROMOTING LOCAL AND EUROPEAN CITIZENSHIP In this chapter we want to share with you great examples of activities, projects, infrastructures and events that we found as having relevant potential to contribute to a more engaged and dynamic youth in your community.
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Kesklinna Noortekeskus Tallinn –– Estonia The Kesklinna Noortekeskus is one of the eight youth centres currently active in Tallinn, Estonia. This network of youth centres provides a local integrated response to youth and NGOs with such dynamics and enthusiasm that makes them central in the testing and implementation of public policies concerning youth. ¶ The Kesklinna Noortekeskus is one of these equipments that contribute to a highly dynamic and engaged youth community. This youth centre has particular features that make it very relevant within the Tallinn reality: a) the building has a public sauna and a public cafeteria that provide a more intergenerational approach to the community, welcoming Estonians from 6 to 80 years old; b) the youth centre includes a mini youth hostel focused on hosting international volunteers that implement activities and bring ideas to life; c) the Kesklinna Noortekeskus has a coworking space that hosts NGOs that they find strategic to their goals and projects. Currently you can find over there the Shokin Group International or AIESEC Estonia; d) the youth centre has fully dedicated technical staff that defines, plans and executes the institution’s strategy throughout the year, making sure the centre is always relevant within the community. ¶ These features make the Kesklinna Noortekeskus a place and a project worth knowing. Nevertheless, it’s always useful to know that it is possible to rent spaces for events (as we did) or trainings. Activities like karaoke nights, theatre sessions, workshops, yoga classes, culinary sessions or intercultural evenings are very common to take place, so feel free to drop by and get involved or start looking for more information at their website.
Spaces to be young and engaged Spaces and concepts that brought something unique to the equation, making them worth knowing and sharing
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Fuoriluogo Youth Center Asti –– Italy
Daugavpils Youth Centre for Non Formal Education Daugavpils –– Latvia
Fuoriluogo is one of the beating hearts of Asti, Italy. It is probably the most important cultural and social driver for youth in the city. FuoriLuogo is a “house of culture” where writers, musicians, journalists and creatives of all kinds can meet and deal with an audience that is ultimately protagonist of events. It is an educational and training opportunity for students wishing to approach a career path in the field of culture. Fuoriluogo is a dynamic and multifaceted centre for young creatives and a shared space for professionals where future collaborations can be born sitting informally at the Caffè. FuoriLuogo is, for everyone, a lively and stimulating structure. In a nutshell, FuoriLuogo is part of the contemporary world and the place where culture meets economic sustainability in Asti. ¶ Fuoriluogo means in Italian “Out of place” and it was brought to life by a genuine civil movement and dynamic within the Asti community. The citizens of Asti teamed up with the municipality, which converter this ancient and abandoned building at the heart of Asti. From this moment on it was all about community engagement, youth, citizenship, cultural dynamics and socioeconomic development. ¶ Fuoriluogo provides a diverse set of spaces and rooms that you can use to work, create, teach or simply for a private event. The spaces encompasses an events hall, a cafe and several common areas that make it a fantastic option for any kind of event right at the center of this city of the Piemonte region. ¶ Fuoriluogo is, all in all, a story incubator, told, heard and lived, moved mostly by locals, especially local youth with the precious support of the Asti municipality. Fuoriluogo makes cultural business with their own idea of cultural enterprise as the birth of a new concept of place: an outpost.
Daugavpils city council recognized several years ago that the learning process for children and youth were too focused on rigid, inflexible, time and place-bound methods. The traditional learning methods needed to be diversified in order to create well-educated, engaged and active citizens within the community. That was the main problem that the Daugavpils Youth Centre for Non Formal Education was focused in. Since its birth the Youth Centre has become much more than that, positioning itself has a dynamics generator within the local community and opening up a whole new world of possibilities for youth in Daugavpils. The Youth Centre focuses on creating the environment and the necessary substrate to stimulate youth to discover and investigate into their own tastes, objectives, preferences and even their own community. ¶ The Youth Centre currently hosts 26 organizations which contribute in a proactive way to the Youth Centre’s agenda and dynamics, putting together a calendar of activities for the whole year. It is quite common and easy to access dance, circus, music or vocals lessons. There are sports, theatre, arts, design and photography focused organizations. Events in areas such as staging of historical moments and dates, DJ contests and parties or even martial arts demonstrations are very common during the year. ¶ These multifaceted space brings its unique contribution to the project in the sense that it has been able to create an environment that feels like a “House of Organizations” and this organizations contribute to the infrastructure’s dynamics and maintenance, leaving part of their revenue to the Youth Centre. ¶ Daugavpils brings a more informal, exploratory and self-centered approach to local youth’s development and growth through the Youth Centre.
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Gisemi Innovation Hub Trikala –– Greece
Samsen Kulturhus takes us to the coastal city of Kristiansand, Norway. ¶ Samsen kulturhus is Norway’s largest, most extensive and diverse cultural center for youth. It is the municipality of Kristiansand´s flagship providor of cultural activities for young people aged 15-25 in the region. Samsen (has it is locally known) provides the premises, expertise and equipment for the practice, production and experience of art and culture. At Samsen kulturhus you can participate in dance, music, art, film making, photography, climbing, parkour, concerts, festivals and events. Users and autonomous groups play an important role in creating the diversity and the extent of cultural activities. ¶ In a nutshell that’s it… But there’s so much more to say because it takes great management, focus and drive to make such a huge space work based on user's proposals and suggestions. Samsen is worth getting to know despite of your level of expertise or field of specialty, because Samsen is not just about culture. ¶ Samsen Kulturhus created a management model that allows youth and locals to propose events throughout the calendar in a way that it really makes Samsen a Kulturhus by and for everyone. You have filming and photography equipments and scenarios, rehearsal rooms for bands, dancing and gymnastics rooms, meeting rooms, cafe and lounge spaces… It even has a fully equiped concert hall and a huge climbing wall and room. ¶ In Samsen Kulturhus the options are endless and it really stands out from anything we have seen, making it by far the best transformation that we have seen from an acient slaughter house into a modern day culture and youth centre. Mandatory.
The GiSeMi HUB is the accelerator of the diffusion of know-how produced in the academic community, research centres/institutes and productive bodies with the aim of creating a new pole of interregional development within the Trikala region, Greece. ¶ But… What does an Innovation Hub has to do with European citizenship and how does it promote citizenship at a local and European level? Well, Gisemi has everything to do with citizenship… And innovation… And Youth… And Business. ¶ Gisemi Innovation & Entrepreneurship Hub (GiSeMi HUB) is a great example of Europe’s policiesand their impact in local communities and a great example as well of the key importance of local governments in bringing this European policies to life and putting citizens and innovation at the center of regional development. ¶ GiSeMi HUB is, first of all, an infrastructure that provides spaces and services to bring innovation, companies, academia and citizens together towards economic and regional development. GiSeMi HUB provides installations and executes a very intense calendar of events and initiatives that are aimed at supporting innovative business ideas that provide solutions that tackle one or more of the European Union’s Urban Agenda issues. ¶ The municipality of Trikala teamed up with e-Trikala SA to bring this ambitious project to life. They want tackle local development through innovative ideas testing and implementation, but they want you to get involved as well. ¶ Because of this open doors and way of thinking concept the GiSeMi HUB would be a great place for you to try some of your ideas or to engage in a problem-solving community that is looking for impact and innovative solutions for today’s urban problems. ¶ So, if you ate looking for a hands-on approach to problem solving that can relate to youth and young people’s aspirations, GiSeMi HUB would be a great place to get in touch with in order to get involved and be part of the solution.
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Samsen Kulturhus Kristiansand –– Norway
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European Youth Work Academy Belgrade –– Serbia The "European Youth Work Accademy" was hosted by CET Platform in Belgrade in Serbia between October 2015 and October 2016. ¶ This major-12month-long project was targeted at community leaders and NGOs that can generate transformative impact in their communities. The project started by focusing on Training of Management (TOM) to provide knowledge and experience related to fund-raising, project management, communication with young people and inclusion of young people with fewer opportunities, along with space for project planning within Erasmus+ framework. This activity provided organizations with time and space to exchange examples of good practices and work on strategic partnership plans and to prepare for the following stages of the project. The Training of Leaders (TOL) followed, engaging future or current youth workers with limited experience that are and will be in charge in their organizations to work directly with young people in local community or on international projects, including Youth Exchanges. ¶ The training focused on getting the participants ready to plan and implement youth exchanges, to provide high quality work as youth leaders on youth exchanges and to be able to recognize and ensure support to young people with fewer opportunities. Last but not least, the Training of Trainers (TOT) involved more experienced youth workers and staff from partner organizations in order to provide them with trainers skills and knowledge to be used in sustainable education of other youth workers and young people about the addressed topics. ¶ Non-formal methods such as brainstorming, presentations, individual and group work, simulations, role-playing, debates, dissuasions, etc. were used. ¶ The European Youth Work Academy still stands as a landmark on the CET Platform’s track record of advocating for youth and European values, generating a massive multiplier effect within the network and it’s actors.
Youthful and community engaging ideas Events and initiatives that put european citizenship values at the centre of the community and disseminate them through youth and NGOs
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Walk for Europe –– Europe Direct ^ ^ Tamega, Sousa e Alto Tamega –– Portugal
The Opinion Festival is a meeting place where everyone is welcome to the festival, who is in good order in Estonia and in the world, who wants to hear, think, ask and speak on topics that are important to society. It is the place to find like-minded people, but also for new ideas, perspectives, views and just to have a good time. At the Opinion Festival you will find out what the Estonian person thinks, what he is worried about or happy about. “The Opinion Festival is one of the few events where people from state institutions and NGOs, cultural figures, entrepreneurs, universities, journalists, citizens, all of whom are part of Estonia’s common discussion culture, come together. Each social group has its own social media and meeting places”says Kristi Liiva, the initiator of the idea of the Opinion Festival. So, if you ever get the chance to participate in the festival, be prepared to meet and discuss face-to-face with political actors, public officers, national and local leaders and many others in a very informal and solutions-focused context. ¶ Discussions come through ideas that can be provided by an organization, a group of people or an individual. The only condition is the willingness to turn the debate from idea to action, ie to bear the costs of bringing ideas to life. ¶ Guessing is easy in some ways - “I like or dislike some ideas”… However, getting an opinion that has an impact that enrichespublic debate and allows for better solutions is much more difficult. ¶ The opinion festival is an impactful event that is very likely to open minds of participants and generate high levels of empathy in the community, whilst promoting citizenship and discussions on common problems that will surely contribute to the much needed solutions.
Sometimes you have to go back to basics and feel amazed by how simple ideas can generate so many “wows” during an initiative… That’s what happened with the Europe Direct Information Centre of Tâmega, Sousa e Alto Tâmega’s “Walk for Europe” in Paços Ferreira, Portugal’s Furniture Capital. Back on May, 24th 2019 in Paços de Ferreira, the Europe Direct Information Centre organized a walking route that began in their headquarters and ended in Paços de Ferreira Urban Park. Along the approximately 2-hour long course there were several georeferenced stations with information about the EU involvement with the space in question and a small lecture explaining the positive contribution of EU funds to the preservation of cultural heritage, to the edification and rebuilding of infrastructures and the overall development of the local economy and tourism. The participants used a map to identify the coordinates and to reach the exact location. ¶ The initiative aimed at showing to the participants the increase in the quality of life in the Paços de Ferreira municipality thanks to the investment in new equipment and infrastructures (#InvestEU). In addition, to highlight the importance of EU investment in the preservation of historical and cultural memory and the importance of the European project in the citizen’s everyday life as well as promoting the European Elections. ¶ It is as simple as that: a walking tour through “non-touristic” spots at your own hometown attached to a historical and communitarian approach to those spots and Voilá… You have surprised and sometimes amazed citizens with how much they did not know about their surroundings and their everyday landscape and environment.
Arvamus Opinion Festival Paide –– Estonia (ENL)
Image by Arvamus Festival
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VE Legrad Culture Legrad –– Croatia
The Folcloristica Festival aims to create a “popular school” for the community, which not only informs and trains young people in the spirit of folklore, but also encourages their personal training through non-formal education and international projects. ¶ It’s promoted by the Associația Super Tineri – Asirys organization, a nonprofit, nonpolitical organization that engages youngsters to turn them into leaders of positive and sustainable changes in their communities. ¶ The purpose of the Folcloristica Festival is to spread the traditional and local culture of Iasi around the world, in order to reinvigorate the traditions and costumes that underlie the cultural base of this region. ¶ This project promotes various events through which young people can experiment this culture, learn their costumes and traditions and, then, spread them! The most important part is that this traditional wisdom is conveyed by the local themselves who are invited to transmit the folklore, challenging each other through performances during the festival. ¶ Through Folcloristica you can learn about history and evolution of folklore, historical traditions, proverbs and sayings, legends, mythological stories, songs (from ballads to epic songs), the folklore calendar and holidays, and much, much more. ¶ This is an incredible way to get to know a rich and unique culture in the best way possible: with and among those who know it the best.
„VE!Legrad culture“ is a project funded by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia and the Legrad Municipality. In order to engage the younger population in cultural manifestations, it was necessary to think of programs that would satisfy the rural audience but add urban elements to their everyday life. ¶ The programme and activities involved a) “Graffiti art for a nicer neighbourhood” – a programme through which the Municipality wanted to educate youth on how to focus their energy and creativity in a constructive way. It included painting multiple surfaces on various abandoned houses in Legrad, skate presentations and the promotion of a mapped cultural route which can be accessed through Google Maps; b) “We love books” – consisted of three creative reading, writing and storytelling programmes which took place at the Legrad Elementary school and kindergarten. ¶ The goal was to involve children in the process of creating of a story; c) A contemporary dance and movement workshop aimed at giving an opportunity to the children of this community to learn new skills and artistic expression that are not so common. ¶ The workshop was complemented with the performance of a silk dancer, who showed the audience that dance can be combined with acrobatics and enhanced the interest of local community in contemporary dance; and d) Comic meeting of Opatija and Legrad, where one local and one renowned Croatian comic artist held a comic workshop for children which was followed by a comic book and caricature exhibition.
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Folcloristica Festival Iasi –– Romania
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Youth Cultural Center Bitola –– North Macedonia YCC – Bitola is one of the leading youth Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) that work on promotion of volunteering and active youth participation. It is a national coordinating office of the non-formal CSO network Volunteer Center of Macedonia developing a nation-wide volunteer service to act as a mechanism for engaging citizen in their communities and linking them with government at the local level. The organization achieved substantial social impact in the area of volunteering by engagement of more than 450 volunteers in the past 7 years. ¶ Bitola became the first Municipality in North Macedonia that established a Local Volunteer Council as an institutional mechanism for improvement of cooperation between local self-government and other key actors in the city – CSOs, public institutions, schools and business sector - to work on improvement of living conditions in the city through promotion of volunteering. ¶ In YCC – Bitola functions a training service which continuously executes a lot of local, national and international trainings for developing skills, competences and knowledge for youth. In the last several years, YCC – Bitola is positioning itself as a serious actor and partner in the creation of public policies at a local and national level, mainly by participation on trainings for capacity building in terms of monitoring the public spending and the process of decentralization, as well as analysis of effective public policy documents. Furthermore, YCC – Bitola is actively involved in working groups for creation of national and local strategies (Strategy for development of volunteering, Strategy for collaboration with civil society organizations of Municipality of Bitola and initiative for creation of a National Youth Council, National Youth Strategy 2016 - 2025). ¶ YCC – Bitola is really putting Bitola at the centre of youth action in North Macedonia.
Youth participation made real Examples of formal responses to the youth engagement and participation problem that can help you reach youth in your community more effectively
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OPP – Portugal Participatory Budget Portugal
Youth councils are a quite common model for youth participation. Bitola, North Macedonia, has one for instance, as we just saw. But Mandal (soon to become Nye Lindesnes after the municipality merging takes effect in 2020), Norway takes it to the next level. ¶ Nye Lindesnes Youth Council addresses a specific age group within the youth target group: youngsters from 14 to 18. This is that age group that is still not represented in public offices due to their ineligibility to vote, but already has opinions to share and ideas to put into practice… And in Mandal they do come into life! ¶ Nye Lindesnes Youth Council works within the municipality’s structure and is brought to life by its staff along with the young elected representatives of Nye Lindesnes youth. The Nye Lindesnes Youth Council participates in the Municipality’s public meetings, having no right to vote but they have the right to speak in all parts of the sessions. This brings public attention to the youth’s interventions and concerns. Furthermore, the Youth Council manages, in a completely independent way, a youth fund of NK 100 000 aimed at supporting and implementing projects and investments targeted at youth. This fund is applied through two open calls per year that give the chance to youth and youth organizations to apply for funding to help them buy sports equipments or build a skate park, among many other possibilities. ¶ The inspiring example of Nye Lindesnes should be spread out all over Europe because this Nordic community is putting young citizens in charge of their choices and their future and they are rising to the challenge in an overwhelming way… And collecting prizes along the way, since they recently won the prize for Best Youth Council in Norway from the Youth National Agency.
Born in Brazil, in the 80’s, the concept of participatory budget was created as a process to fight corruption in public office in that country. Since then, the instrument has evolved a lot and has spread worldwide.It´s use is still very asymmetric, either in Europe or in any other country, but there are great examples worth knowing. ¶ Portugal’s National Participatory Budget (OPP) is the first one in the world being implemented at a national scale and, not just because this, worth sharing. The participatory budget is an instrument of participatory politics where citizens can propose directly to public officers how to apply the available budget. After the proposal and the due diligence to verify competences and feasibility, the validated proposals are subject to direct voting from eligible citizens. Theses citizens vote directly on the proposal that they want to be executed. The proposals with the highest number of votes within the available budget are turned into commitments to execute by the public officers. Basically, that’s the whole idea, but Portugal took it to the next level. ¶ Starting from a bottom up approach and validation through several municipalities, the Portuguese government launched in 2017 the program nationwide, allocating 5 million euros to be invested according to proposals. This budget was divided into regions and topics such as culture, youth, health, public administration, transportation, economic development, etc. ¶ The impact of the program is huge nationwide, in terms of proposals (there are more than 600 validated proposals per year) and in terms of participants with more the 3000 people involved per year in proposal submission, participatory meetings and other public events. To this numbers you must add thousands of voters on the proposals. So the impact is very relevant.
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Nye Lindesnes Youth Council Mandal –– Norway
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Civil Observation: Elections in Bulgaria Sofia –– Bulgaria
E-citizenship is not a new thing and it even comes to very concrete consequences in innovative countries like Estonia… But e-citizenship in local public bodies such as Trikala (Greece) or Vila Boa do Bispo (Portugal) municipalities comes with a different shape and focus. These municipalities implemented the use of electronic communication channels in their local communities between citizens and elected representatives. ¶ Using mobile technology and ubiquity, these municipalities created e-channels for citizens to be active about suggestions and about problems in their day-to-day life that can be solved by the municipality. If you have a whole in the pavement of the public street, if you have a broken public light or even if there’s some problem in a public park you can use apps like Check App Trikala or Juntar a Junta Vila Boa do Bispo. These apps allow you to take a picture of the problem and, along with GPS technology, send it to the municipality with the correct location of the problem. ¶ Once you started implementing such tool, you might as well use its full potential and with this in mind these municipalities allow their citizens to send suggestions directly to the municipality such as events, improvements or other actions that could be done in the population’s best interest. But it doesn’t stop here, you can request declarations or attestations, receive news and updates about events in the municipality or even share resources and equipments to those in need such as wheelchairs or articulated beds. The options are endless, really. Looking at it from the municipalities’ perspective, it allows them to track how long they take to answer requests or solve problems, providing reliable data on the services’ performance and possible improvements. ¶ You can easily get in touch with the above mentioned municipalities (they are partners in the project) or check the apps directly from Google Play Store or Apple’s App Store.
There are so many great things that are happening under the Institute for Social Integration in Bulgaria that we just can’t get enough of them. Their Civil Observation: Elections in Bulgaria project is as ambitious as it is relevant. ¶ The project aims at supporting democratic, transparent and fair elections and increasing citizens’ participation in the electoral process. The project follows three stages: analysis of the electoral legislation, media monitoring and Election Day observation. This is quite an extensive and demanding job, but they are doing it! ¶ The project analyzes the electoral legislation every single voting act, from there they start covering media and different broadcasting stations and their environments and contents. On the Election Day the observers try to pass a clear message of being present and vigilant to possible electoral legislation violations and they hope to create a deterrent effect on possible violations of the democratic process. For this purpose the Institute has created and nourishes a network of civil observers in all regions of the country. ¶ With this committed and relevant work the Institute has gained the confidence of the public and its responsible members have been often invited for discussions and panels on media. Moreover, the network of civil observers has been creating a multiplier effect, increasing voters’ interest and confidence in fair elections. ¶ It is a work in progress still, but the Institute for Social Integration has been doing it and they will gladly share their experience.
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CheckApp and Juntar a Junta Trikala –– Greece and Vila Boa do Bispo –– Portugal
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180 Days Euphoria Kotel –– Bulgaria Bulgaria held the presidency of the Council of the European Union during the first semester of 2018. This major political responsibility and undertaking opened up a diverse set of opportunities for the country to strengthen their position at the european level… And they did not leave it to chance. ¶ The Ministry of Youth and Sport defined a call for organizations to execute campaigns concerning european membership, european citizenship and youth engagement throughout the country. The Bulgarian NGO Renaissance Capital was awarded a Grant to execute the “180 days of EUphoria” campaign. ¶ The campaign aimed at projecting regionally, throughout three regions, the positive image and impacts of EU membership for Bulgarian youth. The campaign promoted dialogue, reflection and discussion about Europe and it’s relevance to every citizens’ lives. The campaign reached more than 380 young Bulgarians through 25 events during those 180 days, creating a more realistic image and a more concrete idea of Europe and European institutions. ¶ This campaign poses as a great exemple of a “leg” of a wider campaign that aims at reaching a young audience with a broad message that is to be communicated nationwide.
Campaigns by and for youth Campaigns and ideas meant to put the word out and to raise awareness about issues within the community
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European Activist Factory Tallinn –– Estonia
This Time I’m Voting is, probably, the biggest campaign to promote voting in the European Elections so far. This campaign was aimed at the 2019 European Parliament’s election. ¶ The campaign had so many shapes, events, forms and activities that we do not aim at describing this aspect in a very thorough manner. The campaign represents a true evolution because of the “non-centralized” way that it occurred. Under the “This Time I’m Voting” a lot of things happened and they happened in different ways. The message was clear: get people to vote, especially young citizens, because Europe’s plurality and diversity might be at risk at the core of the European project. Hate speech, discrimination and far right movements upraise were (and still are) a real concern for EU institutions and European citizens. ¶ The campaign was implemented in the different countries and in each country the campaign was managed as a steering wheel of giant cruise ship (remember the characteristics of the message presented in Chapter 2?), defining goals and basic rules for participation that was fueled by each volunteer’s work and input at a local level. This way it was possible to have a bottom-up approach to a continent-wide event: EU elections. ¶ This strategy allowed volunteers to be creative and organize events and initiatives of different types and through different channels. Both online events and door to door campaigning (or any other example), volunteers proposed and asked for support – either technical or logistical – and the national/regional steering wheel answered. This cooperation-based campaign became the biggest grass-roots campaign ever organized by the European Parliament… Nowadays you can find it at together.eu because this humongous work and network created in 2019 has so much potential that it can only result in even better things. If you think they could help you or that you could be active in this ongoing effort of promoting the European project and its values, register on the website and join the never ending revolution.
The European Activist Factory is a one-year long project, promoted by the Shokkin Group International. The European Activist Factory is supported by the European Youth Foundation and the Council of Europe. ¶ The purpose of the Activist Factory is to raise the level of active citizenship among young people. The project is created to connect young people, youth leaders and organizations around the topic of campaigning and social activism. Thus, it is possible to increase the visibility of the network and their memberorganizations, promoting the “international feeling” of belonging to the #ShokkinFamily. The project is being developed in different countries such as Romania, Poland, Denmark, Spain, Switzerland, Estonia and Norway. ¶ The project is being developed in different countries such as Romania, Poland, Denmark, Spain, Switzerland, Estonia and Norway. ¶ The project is structured through three main stages. First, “We Plan to Act”, which took place in Vihi, Estonia, 3-9 March 2019. It consisted of an international training of trainers from 7 different countries (21 participants) on the topic of youth activism and campaigning. The second stage, “You Act”, is a series of national training events and blended campaigns. Those are held in each partner country, on the 3rd December 2019. Lastly, the third stage, “Evaluate Now!” is a final meeting to evaluate the work done, measure the success of the campaigns, assess results and develop reporting and dissemination materials. So the project promotes 9 activities, two of which are international, and the remaining 7 take place in each partner country. More than 70 youth leaders, members and volunteers from all around Europe were involved. ¶ We found great ideas and concepts for the campaigns created during this project in several involved countries. We strongly suggest that you check them out and get inspired to replicate them on your reality.
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This Time I'm Voting and Together.eu Europe
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When There’s Nowhere to Swim… Zlotoryja –– Poland
The project ROOF – Roots of our Future aimed to disseminate information on the European Union and the European institutions and to encourage citizens to participate in the 2019 European elections. ROOF intended to promote discussions and structured dialogue along the paths of mobility actions (youth exchanges) in order to stimulate active participation in political life, create networks and stimulate involvement in international mobility projects. ¶ The project also aimed at gathering citizens’ opinions on the future of the Union, create new networks and reinforce existing ones, place the theme of sustainable mobility and environmental issues and the protection of heritage at the center of the political agenda and promote dialogue. ¶ The project included a series of 4 youth exchanges that took place at the same time in an itinerant manner through routes that follow the EuroVelo cycling routes and combining cycling routes to train journeys. Each exchange involved the participation of 20 young people (4 plus a leader from each country) starting from 4 different corners of Europe (France, Italy, Sweden, Bulgaria) and with a common destination, Prague (Czech Republic) where a meeting took place with all participants of the exchanges and one representative from each organization to evaluate mobility actions and to initiate dissemination of results. Dissemination events were planned and executed in the 15 countries involved. ¶ This campaign was original and creative from A to Z. Starting from to the concept and the way it would get into the ground to the funding structure. ROOF was funded by the Erasmus + programme through the European Youth Together call. OK, normal stuff. Beyond this, ROOF launched and completed a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter to ensure the needed funding, raising more than €8500 to their budget and completing it with private donors.
Citizens can present their dissatisfacion about local government decisions through different ways. They can write a protest, collect signatures… present it at the city council meeting, talk with the Mayor, ask difficult questions over the internet and demand clear answers… But what should young people do in the not so rare case that nobody is listening and nobody cares about their opinions and needs? ¶ In such case you have to come up with something new, non-standard, out of the box... And make governent decisions look ridicule. ¶ This what young people from Złotoryja, Poland did. They organized a flash mob at the city’s artificial lake - to protest about the fact that there is no water in it… The case is even worse when the city doesn’t have any other option for swimming in the summer for local population and the sea and nearby lakes are hours away by car. The local lake was empty, without water, despite being June and about 30oC degrees and full sumer sun. Young citizens organized themselves, invited and mobilized other citizens and media. To bring to the next level and pay a comic tribute to the iconic 1990’s TV series Baywatch they invited a filmmaker and did all the necessary arrangements for transforming the empty lake into the TV series’ film and production set... The result? A great video showing people who are swimming and enjoying beach activities without water in Zlotoryja’s empty lake. I tis not hard to guess that it went viral immediately and attracted local and regional media attention... But the very best thing: It took only 2 days to have the water back in the lake. Take a couple of minutes of your time and check out the video on the link and it will be quite easy to understand the transformative power of youth, creativity and multimedia.
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ROOF: Routes of Europe Prague –– Czech Republic
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FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES WORTH KNOWING
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Europe for Citizens
Europe for Citizens (EfC) I an initiative of the European Commission for the period 2014-2020 that just got renewed funding, commitments and priorities. ¶ This program focuses on helping European Union citizens to understand their history and cultural diversity. It is also concerned with promoting European citizenship and improving the conditions for civic and democratic participation at the EU level. This program has equal access for all citizens of the European Union, regardless of the EU country in which they live, and has a local dimension, making it visible even in small towns. ¶ Concerning supported actions, the EfC supports activities that promote reflection on European cultural diversity and common values. On the other hand, it supports activities, initiatives and projects that encompass broad civic participation based on three measures: town twinning, city networks and civil society projects. If you want to know what this means, you have a great network of National Contact Points that you can reach out to, but if you want to you can contact any partner of the Europe On a Doorstep project and they (we) will gladly share our thoughts and expertise with you. With the current framing of the program, EfC supports up to 100% of the eligible expenses. The amount is defined when the publication is approved and the program puts forward 50% of the total budget for you to work and, after the submission of the final report and posterior validation you have access to the remaining 50% of the grant. ¶ Countries eligible for this projectare EU member states, as well as those that are beginning the membership process and EFTA countries that are party to the EEA agreement under that agreement.
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Erasmus Plus for Youth
The Erasmus program supports three types of initiatives divided into key actions. In this particular case we want to address Key Action 1 (KA1) that involves youth exchanges, European Solidarity Corps and training and networking initiatives for youth workers. ¶ In the Youth Exchange key action, participants, supported by group leaders, hold workshops, exercises, discussions and role-playing activities. This enables young people to develop skills, discover new cultures, habits and lifestyles and reinforce values such as friendship and solidarity. It is a method very much based on non-formal education. ¶ As for Solidarity Corps, projects are currently submitted through the European Solidarity Corps. In this volunteering program, young people between the ages of 18 and 30 are given the opportunity to volunteer or work on projects for the benefit of people and communities across Europe, both within the applicant's own country and abroad. ¶ After signing up, participants in the European Solidarity body can be selected and invited to join a wide range of projects related, for example, to the prevention of natural disasters and reconstruction following disasters of this kind, the assistance centres for asylum seekers or addressing other social issues at community level. Projects supported by the European Solidarity Corps can last between two and twelve months, usually taking place in countries of the European Union. ¶ Training and networking of youth workers supports the professional development of youth workers through activities such as transnational or international seminars, training courses, exchange events, study visits, etc. All of these activities are organized by the organizations participating in the project. The participation of youth workers in such activities contributes to strengthening the capabilities of their organization and learning outcomes should be disseminated later. ¶ The Erasmus program is probably the most successful European integration program and has been associated to the birth of more than 1 000 000 babies that resulted of relationships initiated in one event or activity of the program… So, we can only have great words for it.
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Other tools and funding opportunities The Europe On a Doorstep (#EUdoor) project is cofounded by the EfC programme of the European Union, but there are many organizations and programmes that are focused on youth and in citizenship that can interest you. ¶ Our first suggestion would be to check out our project’s website (eudoor.eu) and access the several tools, resources and websites available. In there you can find a diverse and useful set of information to frame, in terms of funding, your activities. ¶ After doing that we want to give you a couple of hints that might save you some time and may be very useful in your project planning. The SALTO Youth website is a mandatory directory of opportunities for youth workers and organizations. Browse it and register to get the latest news on international trainings, exchanges, seminars and events concerning youth all over Europe. Moreover, you can access relevant publications, tools and support material for your activities and events that will make them a success. Creative Europe is the funding programe that you must consider if you’re working with youth and culture. These fields overlap not in rare occasions and this program helps you get funds for international partnerships that can translate into communitarian projects aimed at impacting not only your organization but you community’s leaders, NGOs and members. Europe’s cultural diversity is one of the continent’s richness and this program is one of its main friends at the European level. EU institutions in general are very active in the field of youth, but institutions like the Council of Europe (CoE), the European Parliament (EP) or the Committee of Regions (CoR) bring this focus to the next level. In their webpages and through their programs and events you can find so many relevant opportunities for you to learn and to engage with young people. By the way, the European Youth Event 2020 (EYE 2020) is coming up on May 2020 in Strasbourg. Check it out, register and apply. Only great things will come out of it for you and your community. Parallel to the EU institutions and public sphere, you can find a whole world of possibilities between Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and NGOs focused on youth. About this, we have to suggest visiting the European Youth Forum website, it is full of activities, events and opportunities for you to engage at the European level in the field of youth and citizenship.
The European Youth Foundation is a must see as well. This organization, under the umbrella of CoE, manages several funding opportunities through calls and you never know if your idea is worth being funded if you don’t apply… You might just be surprised. Taking this a bit further than Europe, you should not rule out United Nations (UN) funding opportunities related to youth activism and citizenship, neither you should leave off the table the idea of organizing a Model European Union (MEU) Parliamentary session or even a Model United Nations (MUN) general assembly session. The level of engagement and the impact generated locally by this kind of initiatives is way bigger than you might think of beforehand, so give it a chance. ¶ As we said previously, if you don’t know where to begin and you to share your thoughts and questions with us… Please feel free to reach us at email@example.com, we will be happy to help. ¶ A warm and honest thank you to have come along until the end of the publication, we really hope you find it useful and relevant.
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Cheers, The #EUdoor team
CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS PUBLICATION Ana Rita Carneiro Freguesia de Vila Boa do Bispo linkedin.com/in/ana-rita-carneiro-067b34192
Daniel Ribeiro Freguesia de Vila Boa do Bispo linkedin.com/in/daniel-ribeiro-50902b153
Katheryna Makogon CET Platform linkedin.com/in/kmakogon ^ Maria Ines Mota
Freguesia de Vila Boa do Bispo linkedin.com/in/maria-mota-951a7a180
Miguel Carneiro Freguesia de Vila Boa do Bispo linkedin.com/in/migueltcarneiro
Vojislav Vujic CET Platform linkedin.com/in/vojislavvujic
Citizenship and Participation in Youth –– European Benchmarks worth sharing