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Land of Youth: EVS to promote integration and Social Development
Start date: 01 Aug 2016, End date: 30 Nov 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"Land of Youth: EVS to Promote Integration and Social Development" is an EVS project in Sicily which wants to give a concrete demonstration of the importance of the presence of young people in today's society, aiming to strengthen in young people a sense of active participation in society and European citizenship that will allow them to broaden their horizons and understand that Europe includes and is an opportunity to catch.The activities, developed following NFE methodologies, will enable volunteers to develop creativity, entrepreneurship and sense of initiative and to achieve personal and social growth as to guide also their future choices, both personal and professional. 4 young Europeans, aged between 17 and 30 years, will participate in this volunteer experience and, coming in equal numbers from Spain and Romania, will contribute for a period of eight months at our local community to implement activities and support services for young people, to develop concrete actions of solidarity, inclusiveness, cooperation and promote a democratic and active citizenship increasingly participatory and intercultural. Half of the volunteers involved in the project, one for each country is represented by young people living a disadvantage condition compared to their peers for economic, social or geographic reasons.The program of activities, while being different in the specificity of individual projects, has an organization similar in both structure and in non-formal methods. Indeed, workshops, laboratories, role playing and simulations will be the majority of types of volunteer week who, inserted into an ongoing process of comparison, reflection and self-assessment, will develop enduring opportunities to generate new contributions to the project and activities.In addition to training and evaluation days, the volunteers will participate in two local projects where Strauss is coordinating organization while two local organizations sited in Mussomeli will manage the hosting in two different projects based on inclusion:- Individuals with physical and mental disabilities - through socio-cultural animation activities at the Day Centre and the Community managed by a HO;- Children with strong educational, social and cultural disadvantage - through games and socio-educational activities for young people hosted at the Family House managed by the second HO. The presence of professional staff and expertise with high experience will ensure the highest quality design and smooth implementation of the activities, as well as ensure high-impact results both on the volunteers, on the target group and on local communities. In addition, the full availability of facilities and equipment will allow Strauss, the host organizations, and to the sending ones to manage the project in the highest order and serenity. The target group of the project is quite varied and reaches the various layers of the local reality, thanks to the activities that the project idea aims to develop : local young people with problems of integration into society; young people living different situations of distress; high school students and college; young structured and unstructured; the local community throughout. However, all of them will appreciate and enjoy the multicultural contribution ensured by the presence of foreign volunteers, in addition to the practical support provided by them in the performance of activities that will yield benefits in terms of intercultural learning, social growth of the communities and understanding of other cultures and traditions as well break down stereotypes and prejudices often rooted in backward areas.We intend to start with our project partners a real domino effect: set off a reaction that in a linear and continual sequence, and will be pioneer of changes having a positive impact in all areas that our influence will achieve. Close-knit cooperation with partners, professionalism in the management of the project making and meticulous attention to the volunteer's learning process will guarantee a wave of innovation that will lead to break down the barriers of indifference, of misinformation and prejudice through the encounter between different cultures. In fact, the initiative will arouse interest in local communities that will turn into participation, spreading the concept of inclusive Europe, real and possible, at all the subjects involved.The impact will also reach the institutions and the political elements present in the territory and at a regional level which influenced by the good results of the activities will be encouraged to recognize and better support the youth reality and the world of youth workers.
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