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The Power of Media
Start date: May 1, 2015, End date: Apr 30, 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The theme of the youth exchange was proposed by two young people who participated previously in our projects and decided they would like to organise their own project. We believe that the topic of media and critical thinking about the information we get from media is extremely important for young people nowadays. It is important that young people are able to shape their own opinions independently and analyze information. The theme was discussed with our partner groups and we decided to involve in the project those partners who have around them young people interested in this topic as well. The youth exchange is not targeted necessarily at young people who have some experience with media, study the topic or have been dealing with it. It is rather aimed at anyone who is open and wants to discuss his/her opinions and points of view about this theme. We believe that the workshops will enable young people to reflect about how media influence them personally. They will be able to evaluate this and in the future think more critically about what they read or hear. This is important for active participation and citizenship of young people. The working methods will use non-formal education and learning by doing. The methods are described in details in the attached programme of activities. There will be various topics that will be discussed during the week, like advertising, election campaigns, social networks, media manipulation, media and freedom or media in our countries. Firstly, participants will discuss about these topics. There will be some inputs for the discussion prepared by the organisers. All young people will then have a chance to contribute with their own points of view, their own experience, present cases from their countries, etc. The workshops will be done using various methodologies. After these more reflective workshops, young people will have time to create real media outputs about these specific topics. There will be three groups - journalist, photo and video group. The topics will be common to give some guidelines to young people. However, it will be up to them to come up with what they want to express, how they want to express it, what will be the forms, etc. Young people will be actively involved in all the stages of the project. The project idea itself was created by young people who previously participated in youth exchange and now wish to try to organise their own project. They will also co-operate on the idea with young people from the other participating countries. During the preparation phase, young people will get several things to prepare: the food for intercultural dinner, presentation on their countries and presentations on the various topics that will be discussed during the exchange. Young people will have to communicate with the organisers and plan their travel. We will set up a Facebook group and they will be given mini-tasks to do and links to interesting websites that relate to the theme of the project. Young people will be very actively involved during the youth exchange itself as well. The programme of the exchange will be discussed at the APV and we will welcome additional ideas from other countries. We will also give a chance to young people from the other countries to lead specific workshops and contribute with their experience. Therefore, it will be a common job to prepare the youth exchange. During the discussions and reflective workshops, we will encourage all young people to participate, to contribute with their opinions and take part. During the practical workshops, young people will then have the task to work on their own newspaper, photos and videos. They will be free to come up with their own ideas, sub-topics and form these into concrete media outputs. The programme will be flexible and would be adjusted to the needs of the participants and they will be encouraged to contribute to it. There will be also several more informal activities, like national evenings, that will be the responsibility of the participants themselves to organise. We believe the topic of media and media literacy is very important and is connected to the priorities of the Erasmus+ programme. Media literacy is a prerequisite for meaningful participation. Young people must be able to get information from media, think critically about them, analyse them, shape their own opinions and then act on these opinions. Therefore, their attitude towards media is crucial for youth participation. The youth exchange will encourage young people to think about the world around them and have their own opinions as well as to be able to express them. The youth exchange will also work with the topic of European citizenship. We will explore how Europe is portrayed in media and how media influence people's opinion and attitude.
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