Farming with young people - Contact Making Event
Start date: May 1, 2015,
End date: Dec 31, 2015
?Farming with young people? was a KA1 mobility - Contact Making Event - which took place on 2-10 October 2015 in County Durham/Gateshead. The mobility gathered 31 participants from 15 different countries. As such, the very project was implemented with the aim of developing capacities, networks and future project ideas of partner promoters interested in promoting agricultural, gardening and farming activities among young people. In order to achieve that the following project objectives we successively met:
- bringing together promoters from EU, SEE and EEC countries to discover the needs of our regions and potential for developing agricultural initiatives with young people - already at the start of the mobility as part of country sharing participants had the chance to outline the needs related to the situation in their rural or urban environments (depending on where their organisations are based and engaged). This allowed for creating a bigger picture of what is needed nowadays when it comes to engaging youth with any agricultural/gardening/nature related activities. Also, further links and similarities were identified between promoters from the different corners of Europe during the formal (NGO Market) and informal networking time.
- developing closer links between partner organisations involved as well as discovering the opportunities for the joint future cooperation in the youth field
- exchanging best practices already being implemented in the field of youth work, in particular those related to creation of closer links with the environment, gardening, farming, recycling, etc.
- creating new and innovative ideas of how to get young people interested in farming and other nature related activities
- discovering the potential of Erasmus+ Programme and similar EU and/or local funds, invaluable in supporting greater engagement of young people with nature
- developing the necessary capacities in preparing successful funding applications (e.g. applications writing, needs analysis, goals setting).
The mobility itself was built around the sample timetable presented at the application stage. As such, each day consisted of 4 main sessions with reflection groups at the end of the days. Only one day differed as the group was taken on a study visit to the city gardens and city urban farms in Newcastle and Gateshaead. All workshops (sessions) were ran by experienced facilitators who employed a number of non-formal education methods e.g.: one-to-one and group work, teambuilding, discussions, presentations, networking, feedback and evaluation moments, tools sharing. Also, the workshops were frequently filled in with ice-breakers and energisers, which helped in further motivating the group to act and engage in the tasks further.
Overall, the mobility and the whole project allowed for creating a great number for learning opportunities for those directly (hosts, participants) and indirectly engaged (representatives of local communities met, partner promoters back home. As such, it exerted significant impact in form of:
- improved competences in the areas covered by the project (e.g. farming, gardening, permaculture, outdoor activities etc.)
- practical knowledge and skills in ERASMUS+ programme and projects management (please see Learning Outcomes section for specific information)
- new/greater/improved confidence gained on how apply for funding bids in the future, thus turning their ideas into reality
- strong international friendships on personal and valuable links on professional level
- increased motivation to engage with nature and nature related activities further
- greater understanding of the European diversity, ones own culture and identity and how that impacts others
- a great deal of practical examples and case studies to learn from - these come from the study visits to Urban Gardens as well as participants? own sharing, etc.
Finally, 6 new project ideas have been created by the participants. These are now being polished off and prepared for the possible future funding bids within local and international funds (including ERASMUS+).
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