Active Youth Challenge

Program: Erasmus+ Key Action 1, Youth Exchange
Title: Active Youth Challenge
Partners: I Participate – Συμμετέχω – hosting organization (Greece)
Oslo Kommune (Norway) – Comune Di Padova (Italy) – KJBW Kassel (Germany) – ISZOSZ (Hungary)

Duration: July 2019-June 2020

This generation of young Europeans has been hit hard by the economic and social crisis. The transition from education into the labor market has become more difficult as about one out of five young job seekers under 25 cannot find work (Empowering young people to participate in society, EU 2015). Many young people believe that their concerns are not taken up by politicians. More than half of them feel that in their country young people have been marginalized and excluded from economic and social life (Eurobarometer, 2017). A re-analysis of data from several large European surveys pointed out that active citizenship of young Europeans between 14-30 years is affected by several types of inequality (e.g., socioeconomic, gender, or age). Young people coming from less affluent and educated backgrounds such as NEETs are less politically active, less likely to vote, less involved in various civil associations and groups, less communicating about European issues, less involved in European or international projects, or less psychologically connected to Europe in terms of their European identity and trust in European institutions (Youth Participation in Democratic Life, Eurobarometer, 2015).There is a growing pattern of young people feeling disillusioned and discouraged, which leads them to abstain from active participation in local, national or EU level. This is shaping up to be a big challenge because a society with an inactive youth is condemned as young people are the future of a healthy and strong society.

A group of young people from Greece, Italy, Germany, Norway and Hungary want to explore the topic of youth participation (local and online participation) and active citizenship focusing especially in the participation of NEETs and young people with fewer opportunities. Together with youth workers of partner organizations they formed the idea of “Active Youth Challenge” an 8-day youth exchange, that will take place in Larissa during 28/9 – 5/10/2019 and involves 40 young people and 10 team leaders from 5 countries (Greece, Italy, Germany, Norway, Hungary) with the aim to exchange views and ideas on how to activate young people and especially NEETs on local, online and EU level and magnify their impact and level of participation in their community.

Our project’s objectives are to:

  • connect and involve active Europeans from the 5 countries and increase their awareness and understanding of other cultures and countries and explore ways for boosting active youth participation especially in a local level where the impact of young people is magnified
  • give the opportunity to young Europeans to explore the challenges and obstacles of youth participation in the different levels (local, national, EU) and how we can overcome them
  • support them in the acquisition of learning outcomes (knowledge, skills, competences) regarding active citizenship in EU level, evaluation and discussion of the EU Elections of 2019
  • foster exchange of views of participants in exploring ways of e-participation and online activism in connection with local youth participation: how young people choose to be active, in what level, how is it different in each local community
  • learn more about the situation of NEETs in other countries, exchange of knowledge and good practices, methods & tools for boosting their participation by creating a social media campaign and a handbook of the youth exchange that will focus on active citizenship and youth participation
  • increase participants’ knowledge on volunteerism and peer support of young people with fewer opportunities (NEETs, young people from rural areas) through non formal education activities, field trip and study visits to local associations

Main activities

  • Getting to know each other and team building activities
  • Role playing and intercultural learning
  • Study and field visits in Karditsa and Volos
  • Online activities (#BeActiveChallenge) and creation of handbook of participation


  • Non formal education and experiential learning: the so-called “learning from experience” i.e.: role games, physical activities and so on;
  • Cooperative learning: participants working together but divided in small groups to reach common goals;
  • Open Space Technology: an interactive method of development of ideas to follow up projects and actions;
  • Peer learning

Profile of participants:

  • young people 18-30 years old, some of them are young people with fewer opportunities such as NEETs and young people coming from rural areas, or with migrant background
  • are interested in youth active citizenship and to know more about the different levels of youth participation and are committed to work and contribute to the objectives of the project
  • are eager to know more about non formal learning methods and lead/participate in activities/ creative workshops during the main activity
  • are willing to participate in the next phases of the project (experts meeting in Norway) and continue the ideas of Active Youth Challenge through follow up activities in their local community
  • are able to work and communicate in English.