OUT OF THE BOX WEEK: YAP! Youth from Another Perspective.
19th-22nd of September 2023 / Fažana, Istria, Croatia.
The Out of the Box Week is back! This four-day event aimed to bring together the members of OTB, representatives of OTB Member Organisations and Experts, who joined in Fažana (Croatia) for a programme of 20+ events to tackle youth challenges, and to find new trends & opportunities within the field of youth work.
This thrilling programme has combined the internal governing structures, working groups and expert meetings, the general assembly, a set of open events, workshops, expert panels, and last but not least, several study visits in Istria. All the efforts have served a purpose – youth engagement and its role in rebuilding society. OTB Week provided a platform for networking, learning, and collaboration, allowing participants to connect, exchange ideas, and create partnerships for sustainable projects.
The first day focused on the governing bodies’ activities, specifically, on sharing OTB Strategic Plan 2021-2025, from which four priorities have been settled down to govern this period: Alternative democracies, Fresh Ideas for Social Cohesion and Solidarity Policies, Economy with Social Mission, and Sustainability Incubator. Furthermore, a comprehensive overview of the key highlights and initiatives within the organisation for the year 2022 was underscored. The growth in staff, an active network, increased budget, and the organisation’s engagement in numerous projects were highlighted. Policy events in Brussels were noted as a regular feature of OTB activities.
On the second day, it was the turn of OTB Member Organisations and Experts to share with the rest of the participants their current fields of work, initiatives and ongoing projects. Consequently, a wide range of diverse youth work initiatives were showcased. Each project was briefly introduced, with a focus on its goals and significance. Some projects highly created curiosity among participants, and notably, the discussion underscored the organisation’s commitment to addressing contemporary youth work challenges. These engaging sessions provided valuable knowledge and perspectives on the challenges & opportunities facing European youth work.
On the third and final day, OTB Week concluded with a whole-day conference involving youth work within a vast variety of sectors. Six (6) different expert panels were established to provide a deeper insight into diverse thematic, as follows:
- Panel I: “Strengthening cooperation between youth NGOs and local and regional authorities”.
- Panel II: “Strengthening cooperation between youth NGOs and ICT sector in cities outreaching young people in the digital age”.
- Panel III: EU Young Innovators Forum: “Service Learning and Sustainability – cooperation between HEI, VET and NGO”.
- Panel IV: “Radicalisation among youth – how to deal with it in different ways?”.
- Panel V: Young Finfleuncers – how to stimulate the financial education of young people?
- Panel VI: Digital platforms and social cohesion in Metaverse – new reality & new youth work.
To wrap up, OTB Week was a resounding success, bringing together members of OTB, representatives of OTB Member Organisations and Experts from diverse backgrounds to share their field of work, initiatives, projects and the most crucial objective – to inspire each other. The events fostered collaboration, networking and knowledge exchange, emphasizing the key role of partnership in youth work to achieve success in our societies. The participants left a positive impact on the OTB Organisation, and the meetings provided them with the space, motivation, and positive energy to dream big and continue fostering partnerships to make a difference in Youth from Another Perspective.