4.2 Explore the Diverse Forms of Youth Workers’ Mobility Projects

4.2 Explore the Diverse Forms of Youth Workers’ Mobility Projects

Let’s explore the different types of youth workers’ training and networking projects which are often implemented within the Erasmus+ Youth in Action programme. If several partner organisations identified a need to develop skills in using new methodologies of working with young people they would probably choose a training course. Usually, there would be a team of trainers who were experienced in that methodology and they would build an educational programme for participants to develop the necessary competences. The duration of such an activity is usually between 5 and 10 days. Depending on the number or complexity of competences to be developed it could also be a long-term training course consisting of several training sessions with some practice in between. If organisations need to share or exchange ways of carrying out youth work with colleagues from other countries involved in using similar methodologies they might organise a seminar. Let’s take the example used before. If a number of organisations were using various theatre techniques in youth work they might wish to share their methods and also learn new methods from others. A seminar is usually shorter than a training course and lasts from 3 to 5 days. In most cases, there would be no trainers as most of the partners would bring their expertise from the field. There might be a team of facilitators, though. They would provide some structure and methods for sharing and learning together in an international group of youth work practitioners. A contact making seminar might be organised if partners are eager to develop new projects in the future. In this case, there would be a common topic or similar types of organisations sharing common needs or interests and ideas for future cooperation. Contact making seminars can be a good space to get to know new partners better to explore each other’s realities and the needs of the young people and actually start developing new international projects. Such seminars usually last from 3 to 5 days. As an ancient proverb goes “It’s better to see once than hear a hundred times” A study visit is another type of ‘youth worker mobility’ which allows people to visit several places in a given country and explore the specifics of youth work there. For example, it could be a study visit focusing on street work or it could be one focusing on social inclusion practices in youth work. A study visit would include trips to various organisations as well as sessions to reflect on what has been learnt how to apply this to the participant’s organisation. Such an activity would usually last up to one week. Let’s imagine that someone participating in a study visit is really excited about the methodologies used and the way an organisation is working with youth. It would be challenging to learn about it just by visiting that specific organisation for an hour or so. No problem! A youth worker can take a job shadowing at that organisation. Such an activity is usually longer than the ones explored before. It may last from one or two weeks to up to 2 months. In this time a youth worker from another country can observe the daily activities of the hosting organisation explore the methods used get a better understanding of the socio-cultural context of the youth work and much more. It is also a great way to develop long lasting relationships which can grow into long-term partnerships between the organisations. Partner organisations may decide to combine several types of mobilities in order to achieve their goals and match the professional development needs of their youth workers and others actively involved in the youth work field. Subtitles by the Amara.org community

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