In the context of the ongoing refugee and migrant crisis in Europe and the risk of marginalization of the newly arrived refugees and migrants, 4 organizations from Sweden, Italy, Bulgaria and Germany developed the Erasmus+ KA2 project “Short Stories – Big Changes”. It has the objective to contribute to the integration and social inclusion of young refugees, migrants and other marginalized young people, to promote fundamental European values such as tolerance, solidarity, understanding of diversity, and, hence, to combat discrimination, racism and xenophobia. The main aims of this project are to contribute to the social inclusion, integration and empowerment of young refugees and migrants in the participating countries and beyond, as well as to build the capacity of the participating organizations and other civil society organizations in the field of social inclusion, integration and empowerment of young refugees and migrants.
These aims will be reached through the planned activities which are:
-A kick-off meeting of the representatives/coordinators of the partner NGOs, which will take place in Sweden and will provide a space for coordination and tasks assignment, clarification of practical and organizational issues
-Development of guidelines (training methodology) for youth workers on the use of non-formal education methods, specifically storytelling, creating powerful messages and audiovisual products for empowering young refugees and migrants through showcasing positive examples of integration. The guidelines will also include methodologies for involving celebrities for advocacy and for using the storytelling techniques online (through videos) and live (Living Library methodology)
-An international training for youth workers based on the developed guidelines which will take place in Sweden, in Södertälje, and will involve 5 youth workers per partner Country
-Multiplier event in Germany to disseminate the guidelines and project results of the first part of the project
-Mid-term meeting organized in Bulgaria, which will contribute for monitoring and evaluating the progress of the project, the activities implemented by each partner; it will also serve for planning the remaining activities, for clarifying practical aspects of the project management and implementation
-Creation of the second intellectual output consisting of two types of short videos: young refugees and migrants sharing their successful stories of integration in the local communities in the partner countries; celebrities (opinion leaders, influencers, policy makers, artists, etc.) from partner countries sharing their positive messages related to the integration of refugees and migrants
-Multiplier event in Italy to promote the videos created in each partner country – involving other stakeholders, refugees, migrants, local community – showing selected videos, discussing and presenting the results of the project
-Living Library events in each partner country – giving the floor to refugees and migrants who have positive stories to share, as well as to youth workers who work in this field
-Final conference in Italy during which representatives of all partners will gather in order to present and discuss the outputs and the results of the project, to plan future steps and follow-up activities
The two outputs of the project: the Guidelines for youth workers: A Story Makes a Difference and the Series of Videos: A Story Makes a Difference will include an innovative element and will be widely disseminated in the partner countries using online tools, social and traditional media, contacting other stakeholders. The outputs will be presented during the local multiplying events in each country, as well as during the final conference, and will be available online for anyone, also after the end of the project.
Through this project the partners from 4 European Countries will not only to build their capacity as well as the capacities of youth workers who work with young refugees and migrants, but will also encourage the participation of young refugees and migrants in society, will inspire them to make a change and to overcome challenges, will promote constructive dialogue, tolerance and acceptance among the local communities, will contribute to the social integration of refugees, migrants and other marginalized groups