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BETA: Bringing Europe Together Through Art
Start date: Jun 1, 2016, End date: Feb 28, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

“BETA: Bringing Europe Together through Art” is an 8-day youth exchange that will involve a total of 36 participants and 1 support staff from the EU and the Western Balkans region, each of the six countries represented by a group of 5 young people and one group leader experienced in working with youth and knowledgeable about the subjects addressed in the project. It will be organized from 14th to 21st September in Olomouc, a city rich in culture and history. The project will focus on topics such as inclusion and equality, anti-discrimination and xenophobia, using art in its various forms as a way to make these subjects relatable to young people. It will be preceded by an Advanced Planning Visit from 20th to 22nd August that will involve 6 group leaders and 1 young person from the Czech Republic.The recent years have been marked by rising social tensions in Europe due to the challenges of immigration, continuing European integration and the economic crisis. Europe stands at a crossroads – will it continue on its way towards becoming an all-inclusive society in accordance with its principles or get caught up in the challenges it is facing today? The answer is in the hands of young Europeans of today. In this project, we want to bring members of today’s young generation of Europe together and get them thinking about social inclusion, what it means and how beneficial inclusive societies are to an individual, through creative methods and techniques that will put them at the center of their learning process, using a universal language that has been connecting people since the dawn of civilization – art. Through various activities that will follow the methodology of non-formal education, the participants will be able to unleash their creativity and actively experience different forms of art while exploring the issues and challenges surrounding social inclusion. Our main aim is to deeply reflect on, raise awareness of and fight barriers to inclusion in the European society, all in the spirit of the European values of brotherhood and solidarity.The main objectives of the project are:• To encourage participants’ personal development and motivate them to be open-minded active European citizens (acting as allies to the socially excluded and the marginalized) by involving them in a week of activities with other young people from various backgrounds and with varied personal experience with social exclusion• To raise awareness of the subject of social inclusion using various art forms created by the participants, concluding with short creative video presentations fostering inclusion and active participation, which will all be promoted and disseminated by the partner organizations, including a final exhibition in Olomouc• To improve the participants’ key competences (such as Communication or Sense of Initiative) by putting them in the limelight of every activity, making them main protagonists of their learning process while using non-formal education and the Youthpass certificate• To intrinsically develop best practices of working with youth on the topic of social inclusion by actively involving experienced group leaders from different backgrounds in the preparation and facilitation of activities• To raise awareness of the Erasmus+ programme and the recognition of the Youthpass certificate as tools to foster a more inclusive European society
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