Historically, young people have faced social exclusion, and the recent economic downturn has prompted high unemployment, which particularly affects the younger generation. However, some disadvantaged groups of young people face exclusion in the longer term for reasons beyond the current crisis. Remaining outside the global labor market has far-reaching consequences – not solely economic. These include a loss of confidence, an undermining of trust and expectations, and an increasing risk of social exclusion and disengagement from society.

As youth unemployment, social exclusion, intercultural communication and youth participation continues to be a policy priority for European and national governments,  the need to empower young people is increasingly recognized in this process.  We see youth empowerment as an attitudinal, structural, and cultural process whereby young people gain the ability, authority, and agency to make decisions and implement change in their own lives and the lives of other people, including youth and adults. In other words empowered young people will exercise power over one’s life by being skilled, critically aware, and active in creating community change.

The long-term training course “inFormal – integration of non-formal education approach to the formal education system for youth empowerment at local level” is an attempt to use non-formal education as a tool for youth empowerment in order to address all the mentioned issues and to build a stable and productive co-working platform for educators coming from formal education and youth field (NGOs and other youth authorities).

  • To unite efforts of youth workers coming from formal and other youth field backgrounds for youth empowerment at local level by using non-formal education
  • To build a necessary set of competences for proficient use of non-formal education instruments and tools for youth empowerment at local level
  • To introduce the values, principles of non-formal educations
  • To discuss the recognition of competences gained by non-formal education
  • To provide the possibility to plan, experiment and to get feedback to the non-formal education activities
  • To discuss and introduces the ways of integration of non-formal education activities to the system of formal education
  • To provide the opportunity to assess the quality of non-formal education activities and youth empowerment process at local level
  • To build a network and to create joined actions in order to address current challenges

As a general outcome, we expect our participants to improve their competences in non-formal education and in the topic of youth empowerment as well as other competences linked to their professional profile; to broader understanding of non-formal education as the most effective tool for youth empowerment, to better understand the interconnections between formal and non-formal education, training and labor market respectively and to improve quality of their work at local, national and international levels.