ELIX will implement the education programme “TeamWorks for Solidarity” (14 days duration) with the support of European Youth Foundation [EYF] and Youth and Lifelong Learning Foundation of Greece funded by European Solidarity Corps [ESC] in order to promote, enhance understanding and mobilize young people in youth matters (youth/social workers) and benefit vulnerable population groups of children and adult refugee and asylum seekers.
ELIX is in search of 3 participants from Greece and 7 participants from other European countries aged 18 to 30 years old having prior or little experience in youth matters to participate in the programme from 8th until 22nd September 2021 on Lesvos Island, Greece.
After the devastating fire in Moria, a new site in Lesvos opened to host at around 7000 refugees and Asylum Seekers. ELIX from the end of September, with the support of UNICEF provided Non-Formal Education to children 5-17 and capacity building to parents for supporting their children to learn their mother tongue with the support of UNICEF and local implementing partners.
The programme aims to educate young people involved in youth/social matters, with minimum experience, but most willing to serve non formal education and psychosocial support of vulnerable population groups of refugee and asylum seekers in Lesvos Island. Actions will take place in Pirgoi Thermis of Lesvos, an island carrying on its shoulder a great refugee population for years now and structurally is comprised of two parts:
- non-formal education (non-formal education tools, site observation, study visits and networking sessions)
- voluntary service and solidarity actions in collaboration with ELIX local partners.
Duration: 14 days (incl. 2 days of travel)
Wednesday 8 September 2021 (Arrival Day) to Wednesday 22 September 2021 (Departure Day)
Location: Lesbos is a Greek island located in the northeastern Aegean Sea, often called Mytilene in Greece, after its capital. It has an area of 1,633 km2 with 321 kilometers of coastline, making it the third largest island in Greece. Pirgoi Thermis (Near Mitilini City), Lesvos Island, Greece
Number of participants: 10 participants
BACKGROUND OF THE PROJECT
After the devastating fire in Moria, in mid-September, a new site in Lesvos opened to host at around 7000 refugees and Asylum Seekers. ELIX from end of September, with the support of UNICEF provided Non-Formal Education to children 5-17 and capacity building to parents for supporting their children to learn their mother tongue. The living conditions in the new RIC are not even close to ideal and the infrastructure for the educational area has not been set up yet. ELIX team (educators and coordinators) in the island provided mobile outdoor educational activities for Greek, English and Science in small groups of children (up to 10 children) apart from the days of extreme weather conditions. At the same time, ELIX provided Greek and English lessons to a group of young women (15-29) outside of the site hosted by ELIX partner NGO Team Humanity.
The young asylum seekers and refugees that we address our intervention are in need of a holistic project of integration.
The need that is focused on an accelerated workshop and training covered by activities concerning job and life skills, recreational activities, capacity building for supporting their children and other population in the site for learning their mother tongue
The participants after receiving a high-quality training adjusted to the needs of such work, will then be deployed and implemented several activities with the target group such as:
- Assist in the educational procedure and classroom management,
- Recreational Activities with children 6-17,
- Parenting sessions and engagement,
- Life and job skills to adolescents and adults (mostly to women),
- Digital and computer literacy skills for protection while navigating to the internet and support on finding proper information.
Apart from the above-described needs of the target group, please find below the wider scope needs:
- Youth/social workers often lack of competences necessary in order to work with vulnerable groups of young people,
- Lack of documented methodology for the proper preparation and training of youth/social workers undertaking such activities either as volunteers or as staff,
- Lack of awareness of the situation in the islands of Greece where refugees are “trapped” under very hard conditions.
OBJECTIVES OF THE PROJECT
The project titled TeamWorks for Solidarity aims to address the 2019-2020 priority 3, adopted by the Committee of Ministers on “Inclusive and Peaceful societies” and it is more specifically targeting a vulnerable group of young people, asylum seekers and refugees in the island of Lesvos.
The project consists of a weeklong focused training for youth/social workers, with limited experience but big willingness to support non formal education and psychosocial support for this vulnerable group. The activity is planned to take place in Lesvos, a heavily affected Greek island with a big refugee population in need of support and is structured in 2 distinctive parts:
- hands-on training for a week with site observation, study visits and networking sessions,
- volunteering and solidarity activity in cooperation with our staff and partners on the island.
The second part of the project will be co-financed by the European Solidarity Corps programme of the European Union. The idea is to combine two different programmes to create a unique project: the first week of activities will be financed by the European Youth Foundation Pilot Activity and will basically focus on the educational dimension, while the second week will be financed by the European Solidarity Corps providing the Volunteering and Solidarity element in the project.
The project is a solid and very needed intervention supporting a very vulnerable group of young people, through non-formal education. It has been developed by young people for young people with a great sense of solidarity, empathy and urge to support and intervene.
The project at the same time is a very good example of post-COVID intervention: Refugee youth have been heavily impacted due to the limited access to education and strict lockdowns that didn’t allow them to even step out of the sites.
Participants will be enabled to further contribute in the long term in the promotion and protection of the rights of refugees, either by volunteering through a project or by joining a civil society organisation as staff. The turn-over of volunteers and staff in the field is quite high, and that's often due to the lack of proper training and support. We expect that this project will provide the necessary skills but also motivate and engage young participants to further engage in the field.
At the same time, the outputs that we are planning to create and especially the training manual and the observation paper will be very important resources for other civil society organisations and youth/social workers to use while developing their own interventions.
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE PROJECT
A. The planned one-week training activity will embed and implement the basic principles of non-formal and intercultural education as well as experiential and informal learning.
The following principles will be followed and promoted through the proposed methodology of the project as presented in the programme:
- Safe Space
- Experiential Learning
- Peer Learning
- Group Learning
Engaging with these principles provides a basic understanding of the methodology of NFE, which has a positive effect on the success of a learning activity (or at least plays a crucial part in supporting the project’s success).
B. The second week will focus on concrete volunteering activities planned in the field with the support of our staff.
The project consists of four main implementation phases that are designed in a specific order throughout the six months of project timeframe. Specifically, the project phases consist of:
- Phase 1 - Preparation (2 month)
- Phase 2 - Activity Implementation (1 month)
This phase is the implementation of the 2 weeks activity planned with 10 youth/social workers in the island of Lesvos.
During the first week, a training will take place in order to fully equip participants with the necessary tools in order to be able to properly intervene in activities engaging with young asylum seekers and refugees. The training will be based on non-formal education methodologies that will enable participants to develop their competences and be able to act in solidarity and service for the local community and especially with vulnerable groups.
The second week will focus on concrete volunteering activities planned in the field with the support of our staff.
The awareness raising video will be recorded during this phase and the editing will be completed in the phase 3.
The team together with the participants will start drafting the observation paper on the situation. The outcome will be finalized and disseminated in the next phases.
- Phase 3 - Follow-Up (2 months)
- Phase 4 - Sustainability and Dissemination (1 month)
The observation paper together with the awareness raising video will be disseminated with partners in local and national level as well as members of international platforms and networks that ELIX is affiliated with (such as the ALLIANCE and CCIVS) aiming to raise awareness on the situation and to provoke action.
PROFILE OF PARTICIPANTS
The main criteria to choose the participants will be their motivation and their interest for the proposed activities and their prior involvement or interest for future engagement in the civil society. The recruitment process is based in openly defining the criteria in order to ensure transparency:
- the motivation of the participants, their desire to be an engaged citizen for themselves and others;
- their readiness for a common work, based on exchange, cooperation, and communication;
- the lack of financial means to participate in other international voluntary projects;
- availability to commit further for the follow up actions;
- their age should be between 18 and 30 years old.
ELIX aims to involve a number of youth/social workers, young people with fewer opportunities:
- economic obstacles: people with a low standard of living, low income, young people in long-term unemployment or poverty;
- cultural differences: immigrants or refugees or descendants from immigrant or refugee families; people belonging to a national or ethnic minority; people with linguistic adaptation and cultural inclusion difficulties.
Additionally, to their economic and cultural obstacles, young people with:
Geographical obstacles: people from remote or rural areas; people living in small islands or in peripheral regions; people from less serviced areas (limited public transport, poor facilities).
ACCOMODATION AND LOCATION
The accommodation (double rooms with breakfast) will be in HOTEL VOTSALA, in Pirgoi Thermis, very close to Mitilini City of Lesvos Island in Greece.
Light lunch and dinner will also be served in Hotel Votsala.
The Training sessions will take place in a seminar venue just 5 minutes walking distance from the hotel, namely in VILLA DAPHIS AND CHLOE.
Local travel will be by public transport or mini-bus depending on the places to be visited.
Press here to fill the online application. For project choice please fill in *1. CHOICE: ELIX-ESC-01
It is important for us to understand your motivation and your experience for the participation to the project, please answer well the questions in the application form *Why do you want to take part in a volunteer project?