SHAPING THE FUTURE IN THE ERASMUS+ PROJECT
That was an idea of the international project FUTURE “Shaping the diverse common FUTURE – Wide dialogue to create and methodologically support a network for involving migrant youth into civic society”under the EU ERASMUS+ programme by youth of partner organizations as members of the project consortium including Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Italy and Georgia. The project has been implemented since 2018 and coordinated by the Dnipro University of Technology.
It should be reminded that in March 2019, a partner kick-off meeting took place in the Dnipro University of Technology; in May and June, young people got acquainted with the basics of an inclusive society during a training course in Lithuania; in October, we all together presented a special “Inspirational Portal” for the youth assisting young migrants and those affected by forced migration; and in early December an international young team of indifferent boys and girls gathered again for training course “Shaping the Future - Youth workers’ Lab” in the Dnipro University of Technology.
The project belongs to the K2 category - Capacity Building in the Field of Youth and aims to bring together experienced higher education professionals (teachers and managers of higher education institutions) and representatives of youth NGOs to strengthen everyone's potential by sharing best practices in involving and adapting young migrants into and for the civil society through formal education and civic engagement beyond the learning hours.
Therefore, we would like to emphasize that bright and smart participants of the youth workers’ lab had such an experience behind the shoulders and such vision of ways of solving acute social problems that best allowed us all to achieve our goals of the training course and the whole project as well. In the Polish team, we had the pleasure of talking to a journalist who researches the topic of migration in the world, the owner of a youth start-up interested in hiring young migrants, a student of humanitarian specialty - a participant of many thematically similar projects and actually a young migrant. The Georgian team impressed us by the depth of knowledge in the theory of responsible, tolerant and multinational society demonstrated by young master degree students in “International Relations” as well as by the energy and experience of young activists of the partner organization in volunteering to help refugees. The Lithuanian youth have made important for us all the emphasis on how to form public opinion and to promote the development of a liberal state policy towards young migrants. Fun and responsible Italians – members of the partner organization, local volunteers and social innovators and young migrants at the same time, shared their experience of projects to involve young migrants and refugees in civil society. And, of course, young Ukrainians, including philological students, internationals, IT engineers, construction structure engineers, members of NGOs and young migrants, opened up to the world the realities of the ATO in eastern Ukraine and the conditions for the adaptation of young internally displaced persons.
28 young indifferent and responsible participants from the partner countries of the project, as a result of 7 days of interaction, activity and creativity in the intercultural environment increased their own potential of social empathy and stimulation of active citizenship of young migrants. Through immersion in international dialogue, young activists have found out for themselves what “social activity” means and what are the practices of its manifestation; tried to initiate positive changes in society towards the acceptance of young migrants; built an intercultural team of like-minded people; offered methods of combining career and social initiatives for young migrants in a new environment; learned to see potential sources of intercultural conflict based on xenophobia; combined formal and non-formal learning practices to better adapt migrant youth in the new society.
It is worth noting that interesting dialogue between the project activists and the participants of the youth conference “Shaping the Future”, which lasted 4-7 December in parallel to the training course, occurred. Project participants' reports revealed serious problems with, sometimes, striking examples of the migrant fate in Italy, Poland, Lithuania, Georgia and Ukraine, which allowed for a complete picture of what young migrants face in their new society and how to overcome and help them for better inclusion and adaptation.
Gigabytes of photo and video information, text messages to friends and members of thematic groups in Lithuania, Ukraine, Poland, Italy and Georgia instantly flew through social media and the web platforms, informing everyone who cares about our training!
Special thanks to ATO veteran Dmitry Koshka for an excursion to the unique ATO museum in Ukraine and for revealing the truth about events in Ukraine.
28 project participants received European Commission Youthpass certificates that are important for social promotion. For some, it was the first significant achievement in life, for others – the first certificate of the highest level and for someone – another step of self-development and self-improvement.
So, the project is ongoing!