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Youngsters in Urban Planning Participation
Start date: Jan 1, 2015, End date: Apr 1, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

In this feasibility visit, in preparation of a KA2 cross-sectorial partnership in the field of youth and education, we wanted to meet, plan and fine-tune the scope and conditions of a future KA2-proposal. The main project (KA2) will focus on participation of young people in projects of city renewal, urban planning, design and co-management of public space. This project wants to use this as gangway to promote active citizenship of young people, non-formal learning and building bridges between youth work, employment and education/learning. The added value to young people is giving them the opportunity to have their say on and work in the public space, which is otherwise mostly and exclusively reserved for designers / architects / city-builders. In doing so, they develop social and technical competences and these will be acknowledged through competence-instruments. All official partners, Ostrava (Czech Republic), Cuenca (Spain), Gothenburg (Sweden) and Ghent (Belgium-Fl.), but also the non-official partners Oslo (Norway) and Utrecht (The Netherlands) have an urban renewal project where they want to involve young people. Non-official partners = these cities were so enthusiastic about this project that they wanted to take part at their own expenses. Main objective of the feasibility visit was to organize a strong partnership to formulate a KA2 project. In this visit we wanted to: 1/ get to know each other personally and professionally; 2/ build trust and partnership among partners involved in training, youth, work, policy making or other relevant fields; 3/ exchange on and create a shared vision and methodology on: • participation of youngsters in urban renewal projects • ownership and co-management by young people (responsibility) • innovative methods of promoting non-formal learning, learning paths and building and acknowledging competences of young people Several activities and learning methods were programmed in the visit such as presentations of partners, workshops (about participation methods), study visits, discussion groups, round tables, open sessions, we created many and diverse learning possibilities. The visit took place in Ghent (Belgium-Fl.) from the 26th of January till the 30th. Each partner had a gender-balanced and age balanced team, consisting out of 4-7 persons, with expertise in different fields from youth, work, urban renewal and training. We achieved the objectives because: *we know that all partners are suited for the KA2. Every partner is looking forward to continue working with the partners in the project. * we obtained a clear view on the scope & project management for the next steps in building a strong KA2 partnership. All partners co-created and co-wrote the renewed aim of the project. * we developed a structure for the next steps regarding the KA2. All the partners are excited about preparing for a KA2 in 2017 but also to continue to share more experiences and methods during networking and training projects in 2016. * workpackages are identified and allocated to the partners. Each partner has a sense of ownership on (a specific part of) the project Because of the ambition of the project and the willingness to succeed, it is very important to have a good knowledge about the scope, share common ground on the different themes, have adequate staffing and enough resources. For this reason the network submitted at the end of April a new KA1- project that continues working on this project. The difference with this KA1, is that all partners, including Oslo and Utrecht meet again in October for a further consolidation of our network, added with the presence of youth organisations, young people etc. This was one of the biggest remarks after the visit in Ghent that we underestimated the fact that getting to know each other takes time and that in order to create a good KA2 - strategic partnership about 'youth participation in urban renewal projects' we have to build in more steps. Also that it is crucial to involve youngsters and youth work organizations. In the new KA1 the aim is to explore more into depth the different themes, especially youth involvement, but also the different partners, with an extra platform/ extra space for the participating youth organisations to express their thoughts, opinions, visions and experiences about the KA2-project. The development of the project had a positive impact on the partners to motivate young people and youth workers to get involved in urban development and provide them with knowledge and experience . Also provide municipalities new tools to apply in their urban development projects and to assess competences of young people. As an overall impact we had impact on strengthening governance processes and public authorities, on all levels. At last we have had impact on the participants in this visit by showing them the added value of working together from different fields such as youth, work, training and urban development.

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