My name is Sara. I’m an Italian law student at University of Sassari. I am an intern of DBYN during the summer 2018. After my first Erasmus+ student in Poland last year, my point of view changed and it became international. I started to think about a new international experience for my Erasmus+ Traineeship and, actually, it’s the DBYN that found me.
DBYN is giving me the opportunity to combine my main interests: law, education, youth issues. It is my first work experience and I am sure that it will help me a lot to grow up professionally. I have the opportunity to improve my communication and networking skills. At DBYN I’m going to work on human rights and advocacy. I can give a legal contribution in the advocacy strategy of the NGO and I will do it safeguarding the sense of humanity.
DBYN shows me how youth is important and we need to defend it. I am sure that after this international experience I will be a different and richer person!
On 26th April, in the premises of COMECE (Commission of Bishops’ Conferences in the EU) took place the first European gathering of International Catholic Youth Organisations, in which Don Bosco International, as a facilitator and coordinator of the meeting, and Don Bosco Youth-Net as one of the most active Catholic Youth Organisation were represented.
The meeting was opened by Fr. Olivier Poquillon op, secretary general of COMECE, very supportive of this process, as there is a clear need and will from the bishops’ representation in Brussels to have young people’s voices heard by the institutions. The content of the meeting was very diverse: the presence of some organisations in the European Youth Forum, the new policy updates at EU level (such as the new Erasmus+, European Youth Strategy or the difficulties with the current EU grants), the work done with migrants and refugees by the different youth organisations, and the follow up of the Synod on Youth, in order to find possible ways to establish social and political dialogue with different stakeholders at national and EU level.
DBYN’s study session Advocates for Education took place from 8 April until 15 April 2018 in Budapest.
24 participants, 4 trainers and several experts from all over Europe came together to learn and teach about Human Rights based advocacy. The study session took place in the European Youth Centre of Budapest, which offered us both financial and content based support. Furthermore as the European Youth Centre stands for “Access to Rights” and “Youth Participation” their policy framework was an ideal basis for the learning programme.
To kick-off the week with a positive vibe, there was a teambuilding. When participating in a study session it’s essential to know the other participants and where they come from. After this the first session took place. It introduced Human Rights and advocacy but also politics & policies and values were included in this session. The trainers provided an efficient week programme which contained interactive sessions, introducing all aspects of the advocacy cycle.
It’s not evident to learn about such a broaden topic in one week. To help to understand it more, DBYN invited two experts to explain in what way they advocate. They gave examples of how you could use it in your own organisation. One of the experts was Anca Sandescu. She is a Human Rights trainer and she clarified why Human Rights are so important when advocating for something.
“I’m a true believer in the fact that we can build up a society in which we can respect everyone.”
The second expert was Angel Gudiña. As executive secretary of Don Bosco International,
he explained advocacy from a Salesian perspective and how he advocates towards European institutions and different policy networks.
At the end of the week there was the opportunity to start up an advocacy campaign. In this way the participants could turn their words into actions and show what advocacy means for them or for their organisations. The outcomes of this study session are a guidebook on youth advocacy, several local advocacy campaigns, and a working group on integrating the No Hate Speech Campaign in the participant’s local organisations.
Advocacy is a new strategic priority for DBYN. It’s part of our Master Plan 2018-2020 and we will continue working on this with our member organisations.
From 8 March until 11 March 2018 the Strategic Network Meeting of DBYN took again place at the Salesianum in Munich. Member organisations from all over Europe came together to discuss the topics on the agenda and to get to know each other’s organisations better.
We kicked off the first day with a session where the representatives got the opportunity to talk about disadvantaged youth. It was important that they could decide what this meant for them and their organisation. It became an interesting brainstorm session where everyone could share their thoughts and ideas. Not only about disadvantaged youth but also about the target groups of every organisation. The representatives were divided in different groups who had the same target audience. The main idea of this exercise was that they could exchange information and learn from each other’s experiences.
The Master Plan 2018-2020 was one of the main topics of the General Executive Body on saturday. It’s defined for the next 3 years and the member organisations got the chance to give their input where necessary. The General Executive Body also voted that Mouvement Salésien des Jeunes France & Belgique-Sud is from now on part of Don Bosco Youth-Net. DBYN is now active in 16 European countries and counts 18 organisations.
‘10 March 2018 will stay in our minds and marks a very big step in the Salesian world for us,’ says Anne-Florence who represented France & Belgium-South in Munich.
My name is Sien. I’m a Belgian student at University College PXL, Hasselt (BE) and I’m studying communication management. I’m graduating in June 2018.
I’m doing my internship at Don Bosco Youth-net from the beginning of March until the beginning of June.
In the beginning of this academic year I went on Erasmus to Lisbon. I’ve been there for three months and it was the most interesting experience I’ve ever accomplished.
Thanks to Erasmus, I figured out that I wanted to do an internship where I still have that international contact and where I can improve my communication skills, in Dutch but also in English.
Doing my internship at DBYN is definitely very challenging for me because it’s my first experience in a real working environment. Everything they do is in the context of young people and I strongly believe that they need our help as much as we need theirs. I’m sure that I will gain a lot of knowledge in terms of how to communicate in a good and effective way with people in Belgium but also in other countries around the world.
I’m convinced that this internship will help me grow in a professional way but also in a personal way.
The organisation has a lot to offer, and so do I!
The symposium on Human Rights Education and Animation in youth work of DBYN took place in Benediktbeuern (Germany) from the 31st October until the 5th November 2017. Almost 20 participants from several European countries (like Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Malta, Montenegro, the Netherlands and Ukraine) took part in this activity. This symposium followed up the training course ‘The Creanimators’ of the work plan ‘Beyond the SEA’ which aims to bring in Human Rights education into basic animation work
Are you active in the spirit Don Bosco as an animator or trainer? Do you have experience as a trainer on a local level but want to expand your horizon? You are interested in learning about working with international groups? You want to develop your own trainings in an international environment?
‘Rise Up!’ is a 5-day European training course for (international) trainers, where you can meet people from over 10 European countries. The TC will focus on training basic and advanced competences of trainers. You will get input on intercultural learning processes, general training skills, DBYN’s educational style, safeguarding and conflict management. Additionally you get the chance to actively work in international groups and try new methods and approaches in a safe environment.
Next to this you will be sharing your own experiences, work on leadership skills, reflect on intercultural learning processes and much more.
The TC takes at the Burg Wildegg near Vienna (AT). The training course will take place from the 27th of October until the 2nd of November 2017.
Are you interested in taking part? Contact your local DBYN organisation for more information and the registration procedure, or visit http://www.dbynbuildingcitizens.net/rise-up.html
Don Bosco Youth-Net was created in 2001 to offer educational opportunities for Don Bosco youth in the growing EU. But Europe and its young people have changed strongly since then. In order to address these changes, DBYN organise a strategic network meeting 16-19 March 2017 at the Salesianum in Munich.
During the first day of work, representatives of member organisations were divided over 4 thematic working groups: Participation & Impact, Education, Representation and Spirituality. The working groups focused on bringing a new clarity on the needs of our member organisations and its youth. The outcomes fed into the annual meeting of DBYN’s General Executive Body. This is the main statutory meeting of the network, which apart from adopting the annual reports, started the development of a new strategic plan for 2018-2020 and a new work plan for the coming year.
DBYN also elected a new leadership. The network voted Aktionszentrum Benediktbeuern from Germany, Salesians of Austria, SPYS Malta and The Salesian Youth ministry office of Great-Britain as new members for the Administrative Body. They are responsible for the operational follow-up of the network. Fonny Grootjans was elected as a new president, who is taking over the presidency of Francesco Bagiolini.
Are you a Don Bosco animator who can’t wait for the summer of 2017 to get active in the activities with your oratory, youth centre or playground? You want to develop new games to play? You always wanted to get to know what Don Bosco animators in other countries are doing during summer? You are planning to take part in DBYN’s summer exchange of animators in 2017?
‘The Creanimators’ is a 6-day European training course for (international) animators, where you can meet animators from over 15 European countries. As all the participants will be animators locally active on playgrounds and in youth centres, we are bringing together a wealth of animation experience in the form of games, energizers, ice-breakers, story-telling ... You will be able to share your own “culture” in animation and learn from the others. You will also be introduced to new methods from the COMPASS manuals, and develop new approaches how to bring the methods from COMPASS to the practice on a summer playground, summer camp or summer oratorio/youth club. The training doesn’t end with the training course itself. You will be also stepping into a vlogging campaign, and be creating new games which we will use to develop a new games APP for animators.
The TC takes place at the Savio House in Bollington (UK). The training course will take place from the 16th of April until the 23rd of April 2017. As this would mean that you are to travel on Easter Sunday, we will also foresee the possibility to arrive 1 day before and join the local community for Easter celebrations.
Are you interested in taking part? Contact your local DBYN organisation for more information and the registration procedure?
Expert seminar: Journeys to a new life - understanding the role of youth work in integrating young refugees in Europe
On 23rd and 24th of November, Don Bosco Youth-Net participated in an expert seminar of ‘the EU-CoE Youth Partnership’. This is a cooperation between the Council of Europe and the European Commission in the youth field. The Expert seminar “Journeys to a new life” was organised by this cooperation in order to gather knowledge concerning the role of youth work for the inclusion of young refugees and migrants in Europe. By opening space for researchers, policy makers, youth workers and refugees to discuss this topic the aim is to find possibilities to improve youth work and its role in social inclusion in the three dimensions research, policy and practice.
As a participant from a practitioner’s point of view, Don Bosco Youth Net could share expertise and experience in working together with and for refugees. Especially the focus on refugees and Human rights education and the participation of young refugees in the seminars of DBYN, as well as two initiatives from Vienna (Sale for Youth, Don Bosco für Flüchtlinge) contributed as examples on how youth organisations and initiatives are important actors in social inclusion of refugees.
Although the background and situation of European countries and their role of youth work is often different, the output of the seminar showed important messages for improvement. It contains experienced good practices from the case studies, identified fields where deeper research is missing and policy recommendations to support youth work. More information, including the analytical papers and case studies can be found on the website of the seminar:
Explore the categories to find information on the actions developed by Don Bosco Youth-Net ivzw