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Erasmus+ TC “Raise local leaders”: A Journey of Learning, Mentoring, and Leadership Excellence Across Borders

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In a collaborative effort spanning nine countries, the Erasmus+ training course, “Raise Local Leaders,” unfolded as a transformative initiative to enhance the competencies and attitudes of youth workers. With participants from the Czech Republic, Armenia, Italy, Greece, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ukraine, Spain, Georgia, Estonia, and France, the project aimed to empower youth workers with the skills and knowledge necessary for effective engagement with the dynamic and diverse Generation Z.

The project revolved around 4 key components: improving the quality of youth workers´ leadership competencies, the creation of short educational videos, the testing of innovative mentoring workshops, and the development of a comprehensive guide for youth leaders.

Improving Leadership Competencies: A crucial aspect of the project involved a dedicated effort to improve the quality of youth workers’ leadership competencies. Through targeted training and interactive sessions, participants improved their leadership skills, focusing on effective communication, decision-making, and strategic thinking. The objective was to empower youth workers to take on leadership roles confidently, ensuring a positive and impactful influence on the youth they guide.

Educational Videos: During the implementation stage, short educational videos were meticulously crafted to serve as examples of how youth workers can connect with and inspire youngsters. Focused on themes of active citizenship, European and democratic values, and local actions motivation, these videos are set to be shared not only locally but also nationally and internationally through the extensive networks of partner organizations and the participating youth workers themselves. Watch here:

Innovative Mentoring Workshop: At the heart of the project was the testing of a groundbreaking mentoring workshop during the major activity. This workshop sought to explore new ways of mentoring youth teams engaged in local youth projects and initiatives. Participants engaged in outdoor activities, delving into discussions on leadership styles and personal archetype profiles inspired by the works of Jean Shinoda Bolen. The experiment, if successful within partner organizations, is poised to have a broader impact, with positive results and methods shared with other stakeholders in the field of youth work and youth action projects.

Comprehensive Guide for Youth Leaders: The project also culminated in the creation of a comprehensive guide for youth leaders. This guide encompasses a range of critical topics, including “Non-Formal Education Methods for Youth Leadership,” “Gen Z: Local Public Actions,” “Mentorship in Youth Initiatives,” “Technologies for Youth Actions,” and “Youth Leaders Soft Skills Improvement.” The guide serves as a valuable resource for youth leaders, offering insights, strategies, and practical advice for navigating the complexities of youth work in the contemporary landscape. You can guide download and freely use here:

Achieving Objectives: The project successfully achieved its primary objectives:

  • Soft skills of youth workers were improved, focusing on interpersonal and intercultural communication skills, emotional intelligence, character traits recognition, teamwork, and more.
  • Youth workers developed hard skills and competencies related to project-building and project-mentoring, guiding both their initiatives and the projects of the youth they work with.
  • Understanding of youth workers was deepened in modern technological, cultural, and social trends, addressing the challenges and opportunities presented by working with Generation Z.
  • Non-formal education tools and intercultural learning were promoted, nurturing the growth of young people involved in youth work. Additionally, Erasmus+ volunteering and mobility opportunities were highlighted as pathways for developing local youth initiatives and projects.

“Raise Local Leaders” stands as a testament to the power of collaborative learning, mentorship, and cross-cultural exchange in the realm of youth work. With a diverse cohort of 34 youth workers, the project not only met its objectives but also laid the groundwork for a more interconnected and empowered community of youth leaders. The ripple effects of this initiative are poised to extend far beyond borders, shaping the future of youth work and community engagement.

The project was co-funded by European Union.

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