Thursday, June 29, 2017

Inter-culturalism in Youth Work

The aim of the Interculturalism in Youth Work Project is to address the gaps in youth development in Counties Sligo and Omagh regarding Interculturalism. There are a number of key outcomes planned as part of the objectives of the programme. Among these is the carrying out of research into the nationality, numbers, gender, ages and out of school activities of non-Irish youth. A number of consultations are part of this programme with non Irish young people on their experiences and participation in mainstream youth structures. Consultations with the parents of non Irish young people also feature. Irish young people are also consulted on issues relating to non-Irish nationals.

Training for youth workers is also a component of this project with follow up facilitated workshops in each of the youth centres. Two trainers from the National Youth Council of Ireland came to Sligo to deliver Intercultural training to Youth Leaders. The first day was devoted to Intercultural Awareness and Practical Supports for doing Intercultural youth work. Ten participants explored their views of other cultures and issues around difference, sectarianism and racism. The second day was focussed on designing and delivering an inclusive youth project. Ten youth leaders were supported to design their ideal project and were guided into making it a reality.

On the 9th of April, twenty young people from both sides of the border attended a joint facilitated workshop in Corralea Adventure Centre in Belcoo. The purpose of this workshop was to share the experience of challenging activities like canoeing, climbing, archery and orienteering. It was an excellent opportunity for the young people to meet in an informal setting and share experiences. All the young people had a very good experience.

The last strand of the project was a series of consultations with young Irish and International people and their parents to find out how different cultures get on together and what activities young people like to engage in. This was carried out through the medium of music, and film. This will be the start of an understanding of how to carry out youth development work in this area; welcoming new communities and building a lasting peace.