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Professionalizing European Youth Circuses
Start date: Feb 1, 2015, End date: Jan 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The project aims to improve the quality of the youth work done in the youth circus field by educating professionals. This is done by offering several master classes: four focusing on sharing best practises between circus trainers and three targeted for the circus school leaders and administrative staff. Also a training course for basic level circus trainers is offered with the possibility of gaining training that will give employment opportunities for young people in the youth circus field. All the training modules also have a strong emphasis on sharing best practises about social inclusion, as previous experiences show that circus is a very powerful tool that can be used for this purpose. This aspect is shared for the wider field of youth workers in the final dissemination seminar. The project is based on the idea of circus as an activity that can be used as a tool to increase the psycho-physical and social wellbeing of young people. Circus also improves the self-esteem and gives positive learning experiences for different kinds of people. The project aims to develop the professionalism of the youth circus workers in order to increse the positive effects that can be reached through circus. There is a strong focus on giving more tools to the trainers and youth circus leaders and raise their professional self-esteem as well as increase their motivation to stay in the field. The project activities will be organised in eight different countries. The local partner is in charge of organising the activity in their country. During the project, an open-knowledge resource centre is created where all the learning material created during the project will be collected. These are disseminated to the whole youth circus field in each partner country, but also internationally through the already existing connections and networks. The project will gather altogether 17 participants for the basic trainer course, 48 for the administrative masterclasses and 72 for the pedagogical masterclasses. The dissemination seminar is expected to collect 80 participants. The project steering group will meet eight times during the project. Through the existing networks that the partners have in their countries and in other parts of Europe it is possible to reach thousands of people working in the field of youth circus and give them the chance to benefit from the project results. In addition to that, several national actions will be made to include a wider field of youth work in each country and give them knowledge about circus as a method to increase the wellbeing of young people. The project will influence the youth circus field through trainings that support the participants and the youth circuses where they work but also the creation of national training courses and thus the long-term development of the youth circus field on the way of becoming more professional. As all the curricula, training materials etc. are available online as an open resource, the project benefits even actors who don't take part in the project but who are invited to take advantage of the received results. In this way, the project is expected to have an international influence on the professionalization of the youth circus field.
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