#wecare_ye is a project coordinated by Consorzio per Valutazioni Biologiche e Farmacologiche (CVBF) with the aim to create four new Young Persons Advisory Groups (YPAGs) in Romania, Czech Republic, Greece and Belgium following the experience of KIDS Bari and KIDS Albania developed under the umbrella of the TEDDY Network, by fostering youth active participation (including young patients) in health promotion. To achieve this goal, a youth exchange was organized on July 8-18, 2019 with the group leaders responsible for the setting up of the group and the youngsters, aged 13-18 years, that have been selected by each organisation among those involved in their local activities (young patients, patients’ relatives, youngsters interested to health in general). The youths followed a training period characterized by the “peers education” and “learning by doing” approaches, aimed to increase their engagement on health and research issues (through a better knowledge and active engagement) and learn how to be actively involved in the decisions concerning their own health, but also the planning, participation and evaluation of research involving children.
Project Coordinator: Consorzio per Valutazioni Biologiche e Farmacologiche
Funded by: Erasmus+ Italian Agency, KA105 – Youth mobility
A Young Persons Advisory Group, or YPAG, is composed of youths actively participating as partners, advising researchers and their teams on a full range of activities in various research projects and initiatives. As shown in the United Kingdom, Europe, the United States, and Canada, their ability to provide fresh perspectives on a research study have resulted in much valued knowledge and changed attitudes about the involvement of young people.
KIDS Bari and KIDS Albania are respectively the first Italian and Albanian YPAG, to find more on what a YPAG is and on the activities of these two YPAGs click here.
The #wecare_ye_project is coordinated by Consorzio per Valutazioni Biologiche e Farmacologiche (CVBF), in partnership with Romanian Angel Appeal Foundation (RAA), Masarykova Univerzita (MU), EPIONI Greek Carers Network and Universitair Ziekenhuis Antwerpen (UZA).
The partnership has been chosen based on their mission and expertise. Although they work on different fields and have heterogeneous competences, they share the awareness of the importance of the following factors in the scientific and global community:
- The active participation of youths in Society
- Promotion of Health
- Social inclusion
An Advance Planning Visit (APV) took place in Bari in May 2019 and was attended by the group leaders. The meeting was the occasion to define the main activities foreseen during the exchange that will gather all the participants in Bari from the 8th to the 18th of July 2019. The agenda of the event in July has been drafted and agreed by the group leaders.
A Youth Exchange is an experience bringing together groups of young people from two or more countries, providing them with an opportunity to meet, discuss, and confront various themes, while learning about each other’s countries and cultures. The main aim is to encourage and promote the personal and social education of young people, reinforcing their feeling of being European citizens. The young people involved in the Youth Exchange, are an essential ‘active’ part from the very beginning till the very end of such a project.
From 8th to 18th July 2019 in Bari, 25 youths aged 13-18 years, guided by 5 group leaders, participated in #wecare youth exchange.
The selection and the involvement of these youths has represented the first step for the creation of the YPAGs in the partner Countries under the umbrella of TEDDY European Network for Excellence for Paediatric Clinical Research.
The youths selected for #wecare exchange expressed a common need to gain a better knowledge on Health issues, in order to better influence their social and political environment. Moreover, they showed great interest in actively participating in research activities, advising researchers and their teams in various projects and initiatives.
During these 10 days, the participants organized not formal activities based on the “peer education” and “learning by doing” approaches, aimed to increase their engagement on health issues (through a better knowledge and active engagement). Training activities (according to the YPAG training plan performed by KIDS Bari and KIDS Albania in 2018 and ongoing in 2019) was based on a training plan normally used in the YPAG members’ education and focused on 5 main areas: Biomedicine, Basic research, clinical research, innovation and information and Humanization of healthcare. Moreover, the youths had the possibility to visit the MRI room of the Paediatric Hospital “Giovanni XXIII” of Bari, recently beautifully decorated by the artist Sally Gallotti. Moreover, they visited the laboratories of the Department of Pharmacology and Genetics at the University of Bari. Finally, one of the aims of the project was creating an awareness campaign for lymphoma in occasion of the World Lymphoma Day on 15 September, creating a website and dedicated hashtag, logo and slogan.
Have a look at #wecare website!
Youth Exchanges are intended to contribute to the personal development of the young participants. The exchanges are open to all European young people, regardless of their background, education, or socio-economic situation.
Every participant is individually entitled to receive a Youthpass Certicate, a useful recognition to document and recognise learning outcomes from youth work and solidarity activities. It is available for projects funded by Erasmus+: Youth in Action programme, and will be made available for the European Solidarity Corps. It is a part of the European Commission’s strategy to foster the recognition of non-formal learning, putting policy into practice and practice into policy.
For more information, please click here.
The European Union’s Erasmus+ programme is a funding scheme to support activities in the fields of Education, Training, Youth and Sport. The Programme is made up of three “Key Actions” and two additional actions. They are managed partly at the national level by National Agencies and partly at the European level by the EACEA. The European Commission is responsible for Erasmus+ policies and oversees the overall programme implementation.
#wecare_youth exchange is collocated within the Key Action 1 – Mobility of Individulas, that is all about providing opportunities for individuals to improve their skills, enhance their employability and gain cultural awareness.
Under Key Action 1 organisations can apply for funding to run mobility projects to enable organisations to offer structured study, work experience, job shadowing, volunteering, training and teaching opportunities to staff and learners.
Beneficiaries are able to spend a period of time in another participating country gaining valuable experience of life, study and work with the aim of increasing the opportunities available to them in the future.
More information are available at this link.