Measure 1.2: Cross-border initiatives targeting the exchange of people and ideas to enhance professional and civil society cooperation
Project title: Active Youth for Active Societies
|Project value||EU contribution|
|Republic of Serbia||€ 59,310.10||€ 50,413.58|
|Montenegro||€ 89,890.90||€ 74,500.00|
|TOTAL||€ 149,181.00||€ 124,913.58|
Beneficiary of funds in the Republic of Serbia: Centre for Youth Work (CZOR), Novi Sad
Partner: Urban In, Novi Pazar
Beneficiary of funds in Montenegro: Forum Youth and Informal Education (Forum MNE), Podgorica
Partner: Vocational Education and Training Centre (VET Centre Montenegro), Podgorica
Area of implementation:
• Montenegro: Municipalities of Berane, Plav and Rožaje
• Serbia: The City of Novi Pazar and municipalities of Sjenica and Prijepolje
Project duration: 15/08/2012 – 14/08/2014
Project objectives: The overall objective of the project was to enhance the cross border professional and civic society cooperation in area of youth activism as basis for the social revitalization of the relations and strengthening of ongoing democratization processes as basis for common path to the EU. The specific objective of the project was to promote and protect human rights in Sandžak area through capacity building and networking of formal and non-formal youth groups including Youth offices in youth activism, protection of human rights and fostering multiculturalism and diversity in their community
Activities and results of the project
The project brought together 34 active young people from 6 cities and municipalities, who were part of the project from start to finish and created recommendations for further, but also shared their experiences with their peers in order to introduce youth activism in these municipalities. Also, Forum MNE and the CZOR ensured that young people develop ideas for projects and initiatives that can be implemented after this project.
With the support and cooperation of the presidents of all six municipalities, and the assistance of secondary schools in Montenegro and youth offices in Serbia, the Project provides for and implements the following activities:
• Three training courses for youth activists on the topics: “From Multiculturalism to Interculturalism”, “Community Development” and “Youth Activism”;
• Workshops and mini actions within communities;
• Youth Bus;
• A publication with practical examples and ideas in the field of youth activism.
In Novi Pazar, a mini action was conducting through the projection of a film about the status of young people in this city. Attendees had the opportunity to participate in a constructive discussion on this subject and to give their opinion on how to improve the status of youth in the community, with particular emphasis on the role of local institutions in the lives of young people.
In Sjenica, an initiated and implemented action resulted in the landscaping of the city park in which young people and all their fellow citizens spend their free time. Benches in the park have been reconstructed and painted. This small action has made a great contribution to comprehension of the concept of common life and the fact that with a little effort and dedication significant positive changes can be made in the local community.
Over the course of the Project, young people from Prijepolje launched a petition campaign for the reconstruction of the sports hall in one of the city’s elementary schools. This problem was evident, but nobody initiated its solution. Through the petition, the youth from Prijepolje were also able to persuade the local government to include the reconstruction of the sports hall into the local action plan. As a result, work on the reconstruction of the school gym has been initiated.
Lim Park in Berane had been neglected. Through their Class Parliament, young people from this town organised a volunteer action that envisaged the cleaning and decorating of the park. They marked a sports field and set up several swings. During the campaign, the young volunteers were joined and assisted in construction by parents of children who spend their time and play in the park.
In the municipality of Plav, young activists launched an action of landscaping the plateau in front of the Cultural Centre. Through their own engagement, they also persuaded representatives of local institutions to support this action with a symbolic amount of money. With the help of the Vocational School and volunteer work, the plateau was cleaned, the fountain, fences and benches painted and flowers were planted. This one-day event was accompanied by music from loudspeakers and was a lot of fun, thus bringing the attention of all Plav citizens on this positive social act.
In Rožaje, the youth identified the lack of youth offices as one of the problems they wanted to solve. With the objective of awakening the consciousness of local communities and institutions about this need, they organised a petition in the central city street. During the organisation of this mini campaign, young people from the Rožaje animated a large number of peers by enabling the signing of petitions both electronically and on the streets. The action was fruitful, thus collecting a significant number of signatures and providing support from city school administrations and the local self-government for the further development of the idea to open a youth office.
The Youth Bus was the central, but also closing activity within the Project. Over the course of 6 days, a branded bus with about 35 young participants of the project travelled each day to six partner cities. In each of these cities, youth implemented a number of young creative and public actions which animated the wider community and drew attention to the importance of youth activism. These actions included:
• “Openly with the Mayor about Young People”, half-hour debates with the president of each municipality in which discussions were held about the status of young people in the local community;
• Flash Mob was performed several times a day, at different locations, in each municipality, with a message promoting – youth activism;
• The performance “Wedding” promotes multiculturalism and interculturalism, as well as many other creative activities, most distinguishably “European Citizen”.
STATEMENTS OF YOUTH WHO TOOK PART IN THE PROJECT
“This project helped me expand my conceptual views and notice differences and similarities between people. Furthermore, by participating in the Project, I gained the confidence to express my opinion at any time, regardless of whether others will accept it or not, but also to accept the opinions of other people in my environment. For this reason, I am grateful to the people who thought of us young people and created this Project, which has helped me in every way.”
“Great experience on the basis of which I learned that there is something good in each of us, without exception.”
“Thanks to this project, I have realised how important it is to be part of society and work with people who have different ideas and opinions they sincerely want to use in assisting the development of our community.”
“The positive thing is that young people who participated in this project recognised their own problems and solved them with the help of the project team. They prospered and become responsible members of their local communities. This project has greatly influenced my development and my views. I hope that more such projects shall be initiated and that young people will have a chance to express their potential and make their own contribution to the development of their country.”
“I am very happy with this project and its idea. I learned a lot about myself, about other cultures and respect for diversity. It would be my pleasure to share my acquired knowledge with others.”
|Available multimedia resources|
|Photos||Youth Bus. It might be possible to obtain even better photographs from the users.||High (usable for print and web)|
|Video footage||Montenegrin and Serbian languages
|The publication “Active Youth for Active Societies”||About the Project and generally on youth activism. Not published on the users’ pages.||High|
|Users’ Web page/ sections relating to the Project||http://www.forum-mne.com/index.php/mn/novosti/75-forum-mne-ucestvovao-na-sajmu-projekata