News

Ymind Activity Update –GREECE

Within the framework of the project, activities that took place in Greece include the organization of 3 different Capacity building training for Teachers in Athens and in Sparta (Peloponnese). A total of 25 teachers participated and thus were presented and trained on the activities and methodology promoted by yMind. It is worthwhile mentioning that one of the project’s main stakeholders in Greece is the “Counselling and Professional Orientation Centre (KESYP)” from the Ministry of Education in the district of Laconia (Peloponnese). KESYP is also member of the “District Action Group of Prevention in the Observatory of Violence”.

Moreover, during the course of the project a total of 304 students from 8 educational institutions covering all levels of initial education (Kindergarten, Elementary, High-School), in both public and private sector, have participated in the project’s activities as described in the Synopsis and Methodology Handbook developed for yMind. One of the workshops in Sparta,  was conducted by a person who 10 years ago was himself a victim of bullying and has acquired a disability because of this.

Finally some of the opinions expressed during the 2 focus groups that took place so far are described below:

- Often students feel pressured by parents and teachers to study harder (sometimes they are not in good terms with them).
-The school system is demanding and as a result they do not have much free time. 
-Students often feel stressed: for marks, from family issues and from other peers (social exclusion, for being teased or picked on, for not belonging in in the “cool” group ) etc.
- According to the majority of the girls two of the most prominent forms of bullying nowadays are cyberbullying and social exclusion. Mostly girls are affected by these.
-Students with learning disabilities (ie. dyslexia) feel that they are in a more difficult and different position one from the rest of the students.

 

Videofilm "Bullying - More than a fight"

The Austrian Women's Shelters Network together with 18 pupils and teachers from an Integration class in Vienna, has developed a screenplay for a video on bullying. The video is called "Bullying - More than just a fight". It is Larissa a new student, she comes from poorer backgrounds, does not know so well, she is somehow different, is shy and she is laughed at for being different. Especially two boys - Lukas and Dragan. Both are starting to get more violent. They also persuade Edi and Alex to joke about Larissa. Larissa withdraws more and more, does not speak to anyone anymore. The more shy she becomes, the harder the harassment of Lukas and Dragan becomes. On Friday afternoon after school Larissa grabs the school bag and wants to go home immediately, but Dragan puts her the "foot". Larissa falls and she falls to the ground. She gets nosebleeds. She begins to cry because her nose begins to hurt violently. A schoolfriends comes and asks what happened, comforts her and picks up the homeroom teacher. Dragan laughs! The teacher goes with Larissa to the school doctor, this supplies her nose, the nose bleeding stops, but the pain is getting worse and the nose swells. The doctor asks what exactly happened. Larissa tells the true story. The doctor calls the rescue, because she is convinced that nose is broken. The rescue brings Larissa to the hospital. The doctor at the hospital confirms the nasal fracture and says to the worried mother of Larissa: We have to file a complaint about assault.

After the scene played by the children, answers to the following questions follow:

Bullying is ...? Violence, discrimination, exclusion, hurtful, destructive etc.

What can we do? Help, support, leave the victim not allon,  get the teachers to help, talk to the victim, stop the perpetrators, etc.

 

The films ends with an apology from the offenders at Larissa.

The main message of the video is: violence is not a solution. We do not accept violence. There is help.

national dissemination conference

On May 18th was held the national dissemination conference to spread yMIND achievements in Sofia. HESED team was proud to host many NGO partners in the Center for Integrated Development in the Roma neighbourhood. The colleagues were really impressed by the project activities and the results at this stage and declared their hope for further possibilities for implementation of activities to prevent violence in schools in Bulgaria.

May 2018

The yMIND booklet presenting the strong and lively children’s and young people’s voices on diversity, gender equality and bullying in school, developed with the contributions of more than 360 students in 18 schools (and one kindergarten) in Austria, Bulgaria, Germany and Greece  is upcoming this summer!

SPI is just finalising the design of the common English language web version that will be soon posted here and printed in three partner languages in the course of the autumn 2018.

Here is a taster for you, three post cards were published in Germany as an appreciative giveaway for the invaluable work of our young co-authors and their teachers!

          

Local stakeholders got aware of the implementation progress of yMIND project in Sofia

One of the HESED community centers hosted a meeting with representatives from the State Agency for Child Protection, the Agency for Social Assistance and Sofia Municipality’s Department of Social Work. The participants learned about various programs applied in the frames of the Model for Integrated Development and were impressed by the progress and reflectiveness of the young people, participating in our project yMIND, which focuses on anti-bullying in schools.

  

March 2018

Beside the 3rd partner meeting in Vienna, in the last month yMIND has participated in several scientific forums of national scope and importance in Germany, which supported the dissemination and upscaling of the good practice models.

On 2 March 2018 yMIND offered a poster presentation at the “Berlin Workshop on Participatory Research”, hosted by the Catholic University of Applied Sciences Berlin.

 

On 21-22 March 2018 yMIND participated with a presentation at the German National Public Health Congress “Armut und Gesundheitsamt 2018”, hosted by the technical University Berlin

Next to that, the experiences of the participatory child-centred approach of yMIND in conducting focus groups with students on the themes of diversity and discrimination were acknowledged by a pilot study project of the German network PartNet. It develops internet tutorials on methods of participatory research. The first two videos have been just launched in German language that allow insights from the perspective of practitioners in the role that focus groups play in participatory research and development processes: See the Teaser here , for the Film click here (using for both password PartNet)

3rd Project Meeting in Vienna

 

The third project meeting of the y-MIND project was held in Vienna, Austria from the 12th until the 14th of March. The main aim of the meeting was the review and discussion on the progress and implementation of the two best practices. During the meeting, the partners had the chance to present the current situation related with the implementation of the two best practices models in their country and discuss about the continuation, evaluation and upscaling of the project activities.

The meeting was organized by the Austrian partner of the project, Austrian Women's Shelter Network (AÖF) and hosted in the hospitable offices of AKIS (http://akiseu.com), the Afghan cultural centre in Vienna.  An onsite visit was organized to the offices of AÖF in order to give the opportunity to the partners to see and discuss the other activities of the organization. Finally, the partners have participated in a flash mob in front of the Austrian parliament organized by organisations working for gender equality requesting from the Austrian government 21 times more budget for prevention and gender equality work.

European Parliamant- the GEAR against IPV approach

The GEAR project, which results formed one of the basis for the Good Practice 1 model of yMIND holds an event presenting its results and policy recommendations at the European Parliament   on 21st of November. The event is organised by the European Anti-violence network and the Smile of the Child and is entitled "Gender Equality Awareness Raising against Intimate Partner Violence: Empowering new generations to build healthy intimate relationships". You can download also the agenda of the event.

October 2017

yMIND was present at the EACEA Thematic Cluster meeting on Social Inclusion: Inspiring Trends in European Funded Projects that took place in Brussels on 9 October 2017. More than 100 projects   from the Erasmus +, Europe for Citizens and Creative Europe programmes attended the meeting. The project’s technical coordinator from SPI Forschung gGmbH participated in two of the workshops and hosted an Open Space discussion session on “Diversity from children’s perspective” group during Workshop 1: Intercultural dialogue and mutual understanding.

 

yMIND’s technical coordinator from SPI Forschung participated at the international conference of the Erasmus + SOIL project in Berlin on 29th September 2017. The project Social Inclusion of Learners (www.soil-project.eu ) aims to foster accessibility if disadvantaged learners into the mainstream education. The conference organised under the motto: “Inclusion as a chance to conceive school anew” brought together more than 100 stakeholders from the whole school system in Berlin. Read more: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1821298634827943.1073741832.1697174887240319&type=1&l=9628a98caa

Piloting of POL model in Bulgaria

The piloting of good practice model 2 Popular Opinion Leader (POL) started in two big Roma communities in Sofia, Bulgaria. The first piloting steps comprised a special selection of young community leaders in the two selected locations – Filipovtzi and Faculteta neighbourhoods. To learn more about the community norms and for the purposes of the needs assessment during the preparation phase HESED`s team organised two focus groups exploring the topic of gender based violence within the selected community of intervention. Two POL groups were started– one with young men and one with young women. From methodological point of view this approach will provide us the precious opportunity to offer two versions of intervention – one addressing potential perpetrators and another, facing the needs of the most vulnerable community members exposed to domestic and gender-based violence risks – young mothers of children at age of 0 to 3. All together 20 young leaders- men and women, are involved in the POL trainings, they are expected to reach more than 100 young people from their social networks and to transmit the massage of non-violent communication in the couple and the family to them.

Piloting of Comprehensive diversity training in Germany

The piloting of good practice model 1 Comprehensive diversity training started in the cooperating four schools in Berlin, Germany. The first implementation steps comprised participatory needs assessment workshops and focus groups with learners to explore their views and perspectives on issues like commonalities and differences, diversity and discrimination, bullying, gender roles and inequalities. Four child-centred workshops were conducted by SPI Forschung with participation of 79 learners from 3rd to 9th grade in June and July 2017. After that 34 of them took part in focus group discussions. The participants were aged between 8 and 17 years and came from welcome classes for refugees and newly-arrived migrant learners or from multi-ethnic classes in primary and secondary schools. Read More: Implementation (Country Focus)

yMIND held its second partner meeting in Sofia, Bulgaria

The four project EU-country partners teamed up for second time since the beginning of the yMIND project between 9th and 12th May 2017 in Sofia. Hosted by the Bulgarian partner Health and Social Develoment Foundation (HESED) the meeting marked a milestone in the preparation for testing of the selected two good-practice models aiming to improve social inclusion of young disadvantaged learners through education. The meeting's objective was to present, discuss and approve for piloting the adapted training models:
- good-practice model I - comprehesnive diversity competence training in school setting (adapted by SPI Forschung gGmbH) and
- good-practice model II - training of popular opinion leaders for gender-based violence prevention in community-based settings (adapted by HESED)
 
Multiple training sessions allowed for method transfer, experience-based teaching and learning and reflection on the practical  implementation in the four local partner settings. Altogether 18 experts from Austria, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece and UK took part in the meeting. Among these were the country coordinators, trainers, teachers, psychologists, social workers, the project leader, manager and technical coordinators and the external evaluator.
 
An on-site visit to the community centre MIR, established by HESED in the Roma neighbourhood "Fakulteta" and presentation of the integrated model for community development and education run by the Bulgarian team complemented the programme providing inspiring insights and fruitful exchange opportunities.
 
As a next step all partner will prepare their local implementation plans and will start piloting the two models in schools, community education centres, refugee camps, Roma and migrant communities.
IMG_3486 yMIND in Sofia EUBULLY drama workshop during yMIND meeting

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