Speak out! Reach out! (Speak out! Reach out)

Published on: 04/09/2008
The project Speak out! – Reach out! aims at stimulating the personal development of young people with fewer opportunities and at providing them with skills making active participation possible. The participants produce a four-language online magazine with radio casts (audio podcasts). By interviewing people, writing articles and producing audio podcasts each group deals with the following two topics “What has Europe to do with me?” and “How can I make a difference?”. As a preparation there are two workshops (webpage design and audio podcasting) for a group of participants and youth workers from each country who afterwards peer-educate their team at home.The project is a vehicle to achieve 1. self-confidence and self-efficiency, 2. acquisition of ICT, social and language skills, 3. more active participation in society and 4. stronger recognition of European identity. As a result the participants are more confident about setting goals for their future and committing to make a change. Their horizons broaden and interest in Europe and other cultures is stirred. Equipped with new competencies and skills their social and labour market inclusion is facilitated. For the pedagogical staff Speak out! – Reach out! is a training and learning opportunity promoting replications of the project in the future.

Description of target users and groups

Young people with fewer opportunities (aged 16 – 25) who live in the peripheral areas of Bucharest, Palermo, Toledo & Stuttgart. All of them seldom leave their neighbourhoods. In general they have not had access to the acquisition of certain skills and competencies which would facilitate their participation and inclusion in society. Youth workers: The pedagogical staff has a diverse professional background, some are experienced full-time social workers and others part-time or volunteering youth workers, teachers and sociologists.

Technology solution

The approach is based on Web 2.0 (a well proven second generation of internet that facilitates collaboration and sharing between users) as a platform not only for specialists and lay persons, but also for young people with fewer opportunities.The basic condition for a professional result is basic journalistic and radio know-how which is taught in workshops. These are attended by both the young people AND the pedagogical staff so that 1. participants learn that even adults (need to) learn new things, 2. bonds between participants and staff are strengthened as the relationship is one of equality, 3. effects of synergy can be exploited creatively. Knowledge transfer by peer-education is a principle of the project which is new to all participating organisations. Technology choice: Open source software

Return on investment

Return on investment: Not applicable / Not available

Lessons learnt

Making plans and setting goals By providing marginalised young people with the opportunity of learning something new they had not thought they could access, they have more confindence in their own abilities and skills and start to make plans and set goals for their own future. Following the workshops with the young people from other countries many participants suddenly understood the importance of learning languages and set this as a personal goal for themselves. Confidence By understanding that they too can achieve something and create something, the young people become more confident. Podcasting requires approaching other people, speaking up and listening. The participants now accept more readily challenges like making appointments on the phone, talking to people outside their circles and meeting their peers from different social backgrounds. "We are not that different in Europe" By meeting with young people from other countries, by using the online magazine as a means of communicating thoughts, ideas and opinions, the particpants realised that they are not so different from one another, that they share many interests and that together they can start to make a difference. Scope: International