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Local changemakers: Social entrepreneurship for young people living in peripheral regions
Start date: May 18, 2015, End date: Dec 17, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

This youth exchange was a partnership cooperation between the peer leaders and educators on intercultural learning with neighbouring countries of the Eastern Partnership youth window. The partners were working on raising awareness of intercultural challenges in Europe and shared innovative visions and practiced possible ways of promoting the idea of social entrepreneurship among young people living in peripheral regions. The objectives reached within the youth exchange were: • Analysis of the role of social entrepreneurship in inclusion of young people living in peripheral regions; • Development of new knowledge and skills in managing diversity in youth work in peripheral regions; • Examination of how the non-formal learning and social entrepreneurship impacts on the lives of young people from peripheral regions throughout Europe and agreement on action-centred strategies that assist young people to address the issues raised; • Practicing of peer-led approach of non-formal groups in a youth exchange; • Progress in recognition of non-formal learning and social entrepreneurs’ inputs and achievements; • Raise of cultural awareness between our countries and promotion of cooperation and understanding. This 10 days youth exchange brought together 64 participants from the UK, Portugal, Moldova and Azerbaijan to the city of Fafe, located in a peripheral region of Portugal. The target group for the exchange was young people coming from peripheral regions with an age range between 17-25. The programme was planned in a way that allowed the young people from each country to meet and plan their own national presentations and evenings and then during the exchange they made a similar active contribution in international teams on their chosen workshops. Workshops were led by young people themselves and this allowed their skill or talent or achievement in certain field to be shared with other participants in the peer group. Then they made an effort to make this work for the benefit of the local community or a local target group through the developed social entrepreneurship projects in accordance with the OPEN SPACE technology. During the exchange we used activities, workshops, presentations, facilitated exchange of experiences and best practices. Methods of facilitation were selected by the preparatory team from the SALTO online toolbox. The exchange was complemented by blocks on the Erasmus+ programme, some follow up and future partnership planning and evaluation. The advantages gained and skills acquired at the exchange were used not only by participants of the project but also disseminated by local youth groups and the organisations that took part in such intercultural follow up projects, which related this exchange to a local and European context. One of the achieved aims was also initiation of the cooperation with the Neighbouring Partner Countries. The Erasmus+ programme was explored and promoted, which would lead to follow up projects and usage of the skills gained during this exchange in terms of paying more attention to the Transfer of Knowledge.
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