🏆 #EIVYA2020 🏆
🏆 Erasmus+ International Volunteer Youth Awards 🏆 🏆 🏆
Awarding and celebrating youth work is another tool to make our work better recognized and sustainable.
Type of the tool
☐ Self-assessment tool
☒ Large Scale Celebration
Recognition dimensions addressed by the tool
☒ Social Recognition
☐ Formal recognition
☐ Political recognition
Level of influence of your tool
Target group(s) for the tool
☒ Youth workers
☒ Youth leaders
☒ Young people
☒ Youth organizations
☒ People from different social clusters
☒ Higher Education Institutions
To what problem does this tool target?
Youth Work, especially the one that happens on a voluntary basis in most of our countries, is usually staying at a project-based level. The problem we all face is the lack of sustainability of the projects and initiatives we undertake and successfully implement, as we all depend on the financial support.
Within the consortium of this project, we aimed to give sustainability of the process of recognition we started, make the outputs, the tools of the project more visible and sustaining.
Young people and wider clusters of society are willingly attending events and gatherings, where there are more celebration and positivity. The tool aims to use the method of large scale celebration and socializing opportunities, to make youth work excellence recognized and celebrate the contribution of youth workers and volunteers in the development of our society.
How does the tool work?
Within the project ‘Voluntary Youth Work Recognition for Employability’ capacity building project, we decided to organize a Youth Awards ceremony and a Networking Gala Evening. We see this event as a tool to reach recognition, which can be used for national or international levels. Here we share step by step how to make it work by sharing our experience.
1. Decide on your partners and with what organisations would be interested in cooperation with you. In our case we involved partners of the project and partner network organisations to co-host the Gala evening.
2. Decide and open the call for your awards nominations. You can check the nomination categories and their criteria here: https://www.europeanprojects.am/erasmus-awards
Try to be creative in the selection of nomination categories. Here we chose 3:
THE MOST INSPIRING VOLUNTEERING STORY IN YOUTH FIELD
THE MOST IMPACTFUL VOLUNTEERING YOUTH INITIATIVE or PROJECT
THE BEST VOLUNTEERING RECOGNITION TOOL OF THE YEAR
3. Decide on the organizational part of your Gala evening, work on the scenario and topic of your evening, networking and celebration part should be under your main attention. Cultural and reception should also be included during the ceremony.
4. Work on your guest list, think strategically whom do you want to invite and make the target of your main aim, which is to raise youth work recognition socially, but also formally. You may want to invite people and decision-makers from the government and relevant institutions, main stakeholders of the field to advocate with you.
5. Work on printing and preparing some promotional materials for the youth awards, it can be the prize, the certificates or other useful promo materials with your event’s logo to give away to the guest.
6. Make clear your target during the evening. Announce clearly why you organized this Youth Awards. It shouldn’t be only for fun or meeting friends. People attending your gathering should be aware that you advocate for recognition on a different level, you want to make excellence and success stories visible and recognized, validated socially and formally. For many people, it will be the first time attending such an event, so you want to be impressive.
7. Follow up with your guest after. Send the materials and thank you letters after the event, include the winners’ profiles and stories, how the decisions have been made, who were in the jury, etc. Remember that this information should be involved from the beginning.
8. Make this event annual and celebrate more!
How can we create a new situation and bring change by using the tool?
The Youth Awards for Volunteering in Youth Work Work celebrate the contribution of volunteers and youth workers in achieving youth development goals.
The awards showcase the work of outstanding young people who are leading initiatives ranging from impactful youth projects, volunteering stories to recognition tools.
Each year the awards will become more popular and many would wish to be nominated and win, thus the recognition will grow.
The awards demonstrate to leaders and other policy-makers the importance of young people’s role in social and political development. The awards also serve to inspire other young people to take action in their communities. Youth work and volunteering can address the number of areas, such as skills training, arts and culture, environment protection, education, health and well-being, human rights, technology, sport, science and many more areas.
We believe that #YouthWorkMatters #VolunteeringMatters
Who does the validation?
This is a tool requiring firstly social validation. If you are successful, your public and people of the Youth Awards and Gala will talk about it later, make it visible and contribute to the validation process more.
The validation of the prizes should be done by a trustworthy jury team, who are experienced in the field of youth work and volunteering.