Local Work Phase in all partner countries

The project "Work Based Learning - The entrance to professional future" is now at its mid stage. This is a very important project work stream as all partner organizations involved are required to operate local actions in order to promote such kind of learning and international mobilities in the VET field in their regions. Therefore, partners have gathered school representatives as well students and have presented the benefits of operating international mobility and apprenticeship schemes for those target groups. The idea for holding such local work phases was to put NGOs and private educational providers closer to public vocational education entities and in this way create valuable ways of cooperation, proposing sustainable future partnerships within the Erasmus+ program.

In Bulgaria, the leading local entity Horizont ProConsult has gathered in Sofia the representatives of almost 30 Vocational schools from all around the country. Two different meetings have been operated. During those meetings, the experts from Horizont ProConsult team have explained the steps to be done for getting EU funding for operating international apprenticeship schemes and the ways of involving students in them. Also, teachers and school staff have learned about the long-term benefits relevant for their institutions while proposing such international activities to their students. last but not least, all institutional members involved have had networking opportunities and have been introduced to the web platform which the project has developed, relevant for registering and finding new partnerships with institutions from several EU countries. Schools but also fellow NGO representatives have declared their big satisfaction out of those working and networking encounters and confirmed their interest to apply for EU funding through the Erasmus+ program for VET mobilities during 2020. The long term results out of the local work operated will be evaluated by the end of the project and within its follow up activities.

Unemployment is one of the strongest challenges faced by European youth nowadays and combatting it remains as a top priority aspect for securing a positive future for young people. “Work Based Learning – The Entrance to the professional future” project aims at creating youth-centered empowering environment for enabling young people to undergo WBL mobility and promotes holistic approach for fostering youth employability by bridging non-formal, formal education and labor market sectors, contributing to the creation of long term multi-level cross-sectorial networking and cooperation In this framework, the first local work phase of the project “WBL: The entrance to professional future” on behalf of IED took place on the 1st of October 2019 in the premises of the Institute of Entrepreneurship Development in the organization’s office, in Larissa, Greece. The majority of the event’s audience was mainly higher education’s students who study in the University of Thessaly, which is located in the city of Larissa. In total, 20 students participated in the event, as well as one of the participants in the C1, which held in Zaragoza, Spain in June 2019.

The event was consisted of presentations which were conducted in order to introduce the project, its purpose, targets, goals and future perspectives to the participants. Not only the project, but also the training activity which held in Zaragoza, Spain in June 2019, were presented in detail. Moreover, IED presented the future training activities that are planned for “WBL: The entrance to professional future” as well. Except for presentations regarding the project, other presentations included topics like the Work Based Learning in Europe and the chances for mobilities around this subject. At the end of the local work phase many of the participants expressed their interest in participating in the upcoming training activities of the project and keep being informed for the project’s updates. All presentations were conducted in Greek language.

The local work phase in Cyprus was done in two separate activities: the first activity, the local work phase for youth, aimed to inform young people about the benefits of work-based learning environments and apprenticeships in companies abroad. CSI has implemented the local work phase for youth during the national festival “Up to You(th)!”, organized by the Youth Board of Cyprus on the 28th of September 2019 in Nicosia. During the event, which has gathered hundreds of young people from all over the island, CSI invited young people to its booth, offering the project’s flyer and discussing with them the possibilities that the project can provide to young people like them. The second phase, the local work phase with stakeholders, aimed at getting interested schools and VET colleges to apply for an Erasmus+ KA1 VET proposal in February 2020. CSI has contacted numerous schools and colleges in Cyprus, informing them about the Work-based learning project and the possibility to develop a proposal in line with the project’s objectives and goals. CSI has also implemented a face-to-face meeting with a local VET college to further discuss the planning of the proposal to be developed for the upcoming Erasmus+ KA1 VET deadline.

The project "Work Based Learning - The entrance to professional future" is now at its Mid-stage. From Asociación Mundus in Zaragoza, we have presented during several meetings, the benefits of operating international mobility and apprenticeship to the students and schools in order to make closer the relationships between NGOs and educational providers. At the same time, we are working on better communication and cooperation with a wide range of companies who have been hosting students since 2016 and who have been awarded in the BET4VET event that took place in Zaragoza in the middle of November for their great collaboration and support.

CECIS organized between September – December 2019 local activities within the project Work based learning – the entrance to the professional future, finance by European Union through Erasmus+ Program, Strategic Partnerships in the Youth Field. The local activities developed involved 2 parts:
1st part – organization of meetings with VET schools from Gorj County to present Erasmus+ opportunities in VET field and establish partnerships. As result of meetings we have settled 3 local partnerships with 3 VET schools from Gorj County and we formed a National Consortium led by CECIS. Through this Consortium we have applied a VET project for students enrolled in technological high schools.
2nd part – organization of a Youth Share event on 19 December aimed to promote international work-based learning opportunities for 20 young people. The event started with the general presentation of the Erasmus+ project Work based learning – the entrance to the professional future, finance by European Union through Erasmus+ Program, Strategic Partnerships in the Youth Field. Youth workers from CECIS presented the opportunities for work-based learning and how youngsters can participate in such projects. The presentation was followed by questions and answers session.

Business School PAR contacted numerous schools in the VET sector during the November and December. Consequently, we organized several meetings with the school representatives. At the meeting we presented the WBL project and put emphasis on the benefits which the program offers to their students. Some of the schools were already introduced with the Erasmus+ programme, but for most of them it was something very new. School representatives gave permission to disseminate the project to their students as well. Students were very interested in the topic and overall concept and opportunities which Erasmus offers. Business School PAR has collaborated with many schools before, but for the very first time plans to engage in VET consortium.

Mine Vaganti NGO carried out several local activities in different schools in North Sardinia (Italy) between September and November 2019. MVNGO organised 2 meetings with students in 2 schools in September and November. We involved a large number of students to whom we presented the project WBL and we shared the European opportunities for youth (Youth Exchange, Training Course, ESC, etc.) offered by the Erasmus Plus programme. Most of the students didn’t know about VET mobilities or any other kind of opportunities. We also identified and analysed the needs of the students with fewer opportunities during a NFE workshop. Moreover, we organised several meetings with school representatives, both in our office and schools in October and November. We presented the project and we proposed them to be part of a consortium of schools in the frame of a VET project that will apply in February 2020. We have already collaborated with different high-schools in the frame of Erasmus Plus - KA1 VET projects and we have successful implemented some of them.