C1 Training Activity, 10-14 June 2019, Zaragoza, Spain

The first joint staff training event integrated in the project has been held in Zaragoza, Spain. The activity has gathered 3 participants from each country who got to know in depth the concept of WBL and the practical ways for providing support for its implementation across the EU. The joint staff event has addressed youth workers and staff members of partner organizations.

The seminar aimed to foster excellence in youth work and the educational field by empowering participants to integrate WBL and apprenticeship schemes into the activities of their organizations and to better promote new kinds of educational pathways, so as to address several youth target groups proposing such offers.

During the training event participants discovered concrete ways in which international WBL mobilities are operated and have acquired relevant competences and know-how related to the provision of support for implementation of such schemes around Europe. Participants have gained new knowledge related to the realization of structured procedures for helping educational entities to involve youth in apprenticeship learning opportunities. Partners' representatives have benefited of a structured training course that helped them to build up the necessary expertise for becoming intermediary actors for bridging educational and job market sectors, thus to become able to facilitate transitions of youth from the educational system to the job market.

Moreover, the seminar has provided detailed information regarding the funding opportunities for fostering youth employability, available through the Erasmus+ program. This international mobility activity has to be considered as stimulating for active participation in learning, sense of initiative and involvement of the youth workers and representatives of partner organizations. The training program, delivered by experienced members of the project team was based on non-formal education and was conducted using highly practical and participative approach.

The joint staff event has created a common learning space, which brought high quality results, out of the process, and as a result is supposed to enhance the impact of the future initiatives led by the directly addressed target groups. The joint staff training has contributed to raise awareness of the needs in terms of WBL in the participating countries and abroad, and has explored the ways to better address either the educational institutions, either directly the youth groups, especially those with fewer opportunities and NEET, for involving them to participate in such opportunities.

Participants' prior experiences in youth work, educational and social fields, in transnational and crosssectorial partnerships, were used as resources in the development of the learning process. The training seminar has fully explored the concepts of WBL and youth employability through various non formal educational means and activities. It has proposed the real opportunity for creating an international learning space for sharing and exchange relevant knowledge and expertise in terms of involving stakeholders in the creation of empowering environment for WBL. Also, the seminar was used for the creation of content for the planned practical local work phase, aiming at the transfer of the shared know-how to other fellow organizations and VET schools, who will be further interested to start working for support of youth employability through WBL and apprenticeship schemes.

Thanks to the learning activity the participants are now able to:

  • - Understand fully the concept and principles of WBL and its implementation
  • - Possess expertise on how to enhance WBL promotion among youth and relevant stakeholders on local level
  • - Have concrete knowledge about the implementation of WBL and apprenticeship schemes on local and international level
  • - Are acquainted with the funding opportunities offered by the Erasmus+ program in view of supporting youth employability through WBL in their communities
  • - Have created contacts with international colleagues operating in the educational and youth fields and work better in network

This learning activity was an important step embedded in the project logic in view of fostering the professionalisation and development of youth work. Since the very beginning, the seminar has been designed in a way to enable the participating organizations to play a pivotal role for bridging formal education and labour market, by using non-formal educational means. Also, trained youth workers are now better able to prepare and motivate young people for taking advantage of international workbased learning mobility opportunities and the positive impact, which comes through. This activity was indispensable within the project framework, as essential within the whole process of creation of favouring WBL environment and conditions for development of such procedures, so will be followed up by the attending representatives in the next project stages.