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Together: Refugees & Youth
Start date: 09 Jun 2016, End date: 08 Jun 2018 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Current European refugee crisis is one of the biggest threats to the European Project (Angela Merkel, 2015). Indeed, the media is full of scenes with thousands of people flocking to Europe from the war zones looking for better life. However, more often than not they end up in the place that does not want to use their potential, let alone welcome them. Is Europe going to keep these refugees out of work and out of the societies? It would be a huge burden and a fast track to clash of cultures. How to avoid that? The refugees must be integrated. Their potential is an opportunity for growth. Therefore, we are willing to carry out the project “Together: Refugees & Youth” (TRY). In essence, TRY aims to create a special programme in which youth workers would include refugees in their work with youth. This way, youth would get a chance to develop in a multicultural environment; thus building up their tolerance and increasing multilingualism. Meanwhile, the refugees would integrate into the society faster, since the youth would help them with the local language, culture and traditions. OBJECTIVES to achieve this: 1) improve local youth work by involving refugees with their skills and experience; 2a) integrate refugees to the societies faster by allowing cultural exchange with the local youth; also 2b) help their integration by promoting more favourable public opinion and employment opportunities for them; 3) raise the qualifications and competences of youth workers, by providing them with tools & standards for multi-cultural element in their work; and 4) lower xenophobia, racism and foster multilingualism of the local youth. Naturally, the main target groups of the project are refugees, youth and youth workers. The number of them to be benefited directly by TRY is 3030. However this does not include people that will be reached by continuing dissemination activities and self-sustainable deliverables after the project. To fulfil what is planned, TRY will have a total duration of 2 years (from VI 2016 to V 2018). Its activities will take place in Latvia, Lithuania and Croatia. These can be grouped into the following:- Research on the best ways to integrate refugees into youth work;- Staff training for the pilot programme;- Creating methodology of how to include refugees into youth work & setting-up web-platform to help that;- Multiplier events to promote the methodology, match the refugees and youth workers and prepare for the pilot;- Pilot programme that will test the methodology in a variety of events for youth in Latvia and Lithuania.- Social Business Idea Challenge (SBIC) – competition for youth to develop their business ideas aimed at helping refugees;- ‘Refugee-friendly’ badge (RFb) creation to award organisations working with refugees;- Further dissemination & continuation activities (e.g. crowdfunding to further support refugee integration to youth work). TRY will be managed collectively by all the partners (representing different sectors), which will have separate tasks & responsibilities. The entire programme will be monitored by the project’s quality board. Official project’s management language is going to be English. Project will produce a range of tangible results, among which the most important ones are: 1) methodology and standards for youth work to include refugees; 2) SBIC and generated business ideas that could be turned to social enterprises; 3) RFb that would serve as recognition for companies/institutions that help refugees; 4) a web-platform, which will store main project resources and include a crowdfunding section. These products are going to impact the target audiences in all the project countries. Firstly, local youth work will be improved by involving refugees with their skills and experience. This will, in turn, add up to qualifications of the youth workers. Both participating refugees and youth will also improve skills & competencies, extend their social networks, foster multilingualism and become less xenophobic. All of which will have a positive impact on their future careers/life. Looking from a purely refugees’ perspective, they will be able to integrate faster. TRY’s results will also give more recognition of similar social initiatives aiming to support refugees. Ideally, this could lead to more of those being implemented and, generally, a more favourable public opinion towards refugees.Partner organisations have designed the project with self-sustainability in mind (e.g. through crowdfunding efforts). That is why, the focus is on quality of the resources produced and their universal applicability in the European context. In line with Erasmus+ standards, the deliverables will be made free and openly accessible.That and the fact that refugee crisis is seemingly without an end and felt across all of the EU, ensures that TRY stays relevant in the long-term. Its results are envisaged to be reintroduced elsewhere and make an impact beyond the project countries.
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