Me and Youth Work: A life-changing experience, every time everywhere

The 20th and the 21st centuries are characterized by the elimination of geographical borders, which means that is easier to travel abroad and come in touch with other cultures. The question that could be raised is how does the current situation affect the development of the human being and which is the key role of the youth worker? Youth work is a means to interact with people from different socio-cultural backgrounds so it might be a unique opportunity to discover yourself and get over some biases that you have never identifieded before due to your existing situation.

If you would like to read the whole article click HERE

Eurodesk Cyprus-Newsletter February:Youth Participation

The interactive bilingual newsletter of the Eurodesk Cyprus for the month February is dedicated to the youth participation,one of the eight fields of the EU Youth Strategy.The youth participation is an important component regarding the further development of the civil society.

The topics are:

  • Active Participation and EU
  • Interview from the president of the “Cyprus Children’s Parliament”
  • Youth on the Move Event
  • Opportunities in Europe
  • Good Practices at a local level
  • Toolkits for youth workers and trainers
  • Contact Information

You may find the newsletter online here

During the interview the president of the Cyprus Children’s Parliament told to Mariepaz:“If the children have their own voice they can do a lot”

Published by edited the Eurodesk Cyprus

Find the newsletter online HERE

Short Note:The Institution of the Commissioner for the Children’s Rights was launched after a “claim” of the Children’s Parliament and of the Pancyprian Coordinating Committee for the Protection and Welfare of Children.

Pancyprian Coordinating Committee for the Protection and Welfare of Children

Eurodesk Cyprus-Newsletter January: Social Inclusion

The interactive bilingual newsletter of the Eurodesk Cyprus for the month January is special dedicated to the social inclusion,one of the eight fields of the EU Youth Strategy.

The topics are:

  • Social Inclusion and EU
  • School for the Blinds “Saint Barnabas”,interview from the Headmaster
  • Opportunities in Europe
  • Good Practices at a local level
  • Toolkits for youth workers and trainers
  • Contact Information

You may find the newsletter online here

After the interview from the headmaster I have another one moto: Disability is an Ability, Mariepaz

Published by edited the Eurodesk Cyprus

Newsletter of the Eurodesk Cyprus-December: Volunteerism

The Newsletter of the Eurodesk Cyprus for the month December is special dedicated to volunteerism since the 2011 was the European Year of Volunteering.

An interactive billingual newsletter with interesting topics such us:

  • 2011:European Year of Volunteerism-official video of the year
  •  Pancyprian Volunteerism Coordinative Council
  • EVS:Interview with Eleni Michael,an ex-EVS volunteer.Useful links such as the EVS database,National Agency of the Youth in Action Programme,Youth Networks
  • Good Practices at a local level

You may find the newsletter online here

Published and edited by the Eurodesk Cyprus

“There is not an I in the team but there is a yoU in the volunteer”

“The volunteer makes the difference”-Slogan of the 2011 European Year of Volunteerism

Yintro: Stepping into the Youth Information

The Youth Board of Cyprus and the National Agency of the “Youth in Action Programme”  organized a  successful training course in Limassol between 27th of November 2011-2nd of December 2011. The training course was based on the ERYICA module “Yintro: Stepping into the Youth Information”.In the training course participated 18 youth information workers from Cyprus,Malta,Belarus,Lithuania and FYROM.

The topics of the training course were:

  • Background  and  Principles  of  Youth  Information
  • Youth Information in Practice
  • The Art of Working with Young People in a Youth Information Setting
  • Continuous Professional Development in Youth Information Work

The participants through workshops, teamwork and other non-formal education methodologies  acquired additional knowledge and skills concerning the field of  youth information.Some of the participants interacted with local youngsters by asking them about their needs. During the training course the participants had the chance to create their own youth information products, exchange good practices, define the competences of a good youth information worker and develop a strategy concerning the field of youth information.

It should also be mentioned that the participants had the opportunity to enrich their cultural perspectives by interacting each others.

Special thanks to Eleftheria,Varvara, Andria and the Youth Information Centers.

Structured Dialogue: Youth in Action Programme- Action 5:1

The young people may affect the decision-making for policies in the field of youth since the November of 2009 after a decision taken by the Council of the European Union (Council of Ministers). The European Commission is asking the opinion of the youngsters for the youth topics through the structured dialogue since the young people are the ones who are directly affected by the youth policies. The structured dialogue is part of the sub-action of the action 5 ,”Support for European Cooperation in the Youth Field”, of the European programme “Youth in Action”.

The main goals are to enhance the participation  and the active citizenship of the young people, two branches of the “EU Youth Strategy” of the European Commission. The youngsters become actors in the process of decision-making, as a result, is improved the communication between the young people with the youth organization , national and European Institutions. The process of the structured dialogue has a really important contribution  to the development of the European citizenship, since, the young people realize that the situation in a another European Country may affect their one reality.

The thematic priorities are set every 18 months by the Council of  Ministers.The EU Youth Conferences are organized by each of the 3 Member States holding the Trio Presidency of the Council, firstly in a national level and then in a European level. The country that has the Presidency of the Council of Europe set its one priorities for their Presidency, so, the member-state that has the Presidency sets the topic for the Youth Conference.The opinions of the young people firstly, are collected in a national level through national conferences or through email and then are collected in a European level.Finally, the European Commission takes into account the outcome of the Youth Conferences in the process of decision-making.

Participating in an EU Youth Conference is a really very interesting experience for the young people, due to the fact  that they have the opportunity to regard many aspects in a specific topic. The structured dialogue also promotes the multicultural aspect of Europe since each EU Youth Conference takes place in the member-state that holds the Presidency.

Now, the Trio Presidency is:

  • Poland 1 July 2011-31 December 2011
  • Denmark 1 January 2012-30 June 2012
  • Cyprus 1 July 2012-31 December 2013

The topic set by the Polish Presidency was “Youth and the World”, the topic of the Danish Presidency is ” Creativity and innovation” and the topic of the Cyprus Presidency is “Participation and social inclusion”.

In the following video you may get an idea about the EU Youth Conference, that took place in Poland:

In a European level  the structured dialogue is also supported by the Eurodesk  and the European Youth Forum.

In Cyprus is supported by the National Agency of the programme “Youth in Action”  ,the Cyprus Youth Council   and the Ministry of Education and Culture .You may also find information through  the Eurodesk Cyprus by email at,FACEBOOK  and by phone at +357-22402613.

For documents concerning the structured dialogue click HERE.

The Minorities and the Cyprus Problem.

In Cyprus, apart from the two major communities, the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot there are three other recognized religious minorities, the Armenians, the Latins and the  Maronites. The Armenians are under the Armenian Orthodox Church, the Latins are under the Romeo-catholic church and the Maronites even though they recognized the Pope as their religious leader they have some differences with the Romeo-catholic church. The Maronites took their name from the “Saint Maronas”.

The Armenians came to Cyprus in the 578 AD. The Latins came between the 1191-1571. The Maronites came to Cyprus from Lebanon between the 8th and the 13th century. The Armenians, Latins and Maronites have a really important contribution to the economic, cultural and social life of the island. It should be mentioned that they have a really strong impact in the history of  Cyprus.According to the Constitution the three recognized minorities had to decide in which community they would like to belong, either to the Greek Cypriot or to the Turkish Cypriot which is against the “Minority Rights”. The above minorities chose to belong to the Greek Cypriot Community.

The educational system has never focused to the multicultural aspect of Cyprus. It is rarely mentioned  the  fact that the Minorities have a really important contribution to the culture of the island.  In the public schools the mainly taught religion is the Greek Orthodox religion, as a result, most of the Greek Cypriots students are completely ignorant about the context of the other religions.In the process of the discussions about the Cyprus problem the minorities who live in Cyprus have never been asked about the kind of the solution they want. In the process of the discussions is always emerging the nationalistic aspect of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriots Community without taking into account the needs and the opinion of the Minorities.

To sum up, I strongly believe that the two major communities should start getting know better the Minorities . Finally, I think that  it’s time to start engaging the Minorities in the discussions for the Cyprus problem.

28 October 1940

28 October 1940, the Greek people said NO to the fascism, to the nationalism, to the Nazism and to the anti-Semitic. The Greek soldiers in the mountains, the women, the children and the old people involved to the struggle against Hitler. Each one had its one unique contribution, the soldiers to the battle, the women knitting socks or repairing clothes. Some of the women and the old men were providing shelter and food to the Jewish people, to Greek soldiers and to people who were declared as “wanted”.

In the educational system and the media it is not promoted the anti-Nazis struggle of that generation but the nationalism. It is controversial because the struggle of those people was for a better future without fascism. Nobody has ever spotted the aspect of solidarity. As a result, most of the people have never realized the key role of the Greek Resistance in the anti-fascist struggle.

When I was a primary and secondary school student I have never heart mentioning the names of Manolis Glezos and
Apostolos Santas who climbed to Acrobolis and hauled down the German Nazis flag . Their action was an inspiration of all the people who were under the Nazism.

Nowadays, for the employees is an occasion for a “day off” and for the students is a day that “they don’t have to go to school”. I think that people should be aware of the anti-fascist struggles in order to avoid the raise of another destroying kind of nationalism.