YES! GAM-EU! Training Course “Let’s Start Playing”

The Training Course “Let’s Start Playing” of the project “Youth Engagement Strategies and Gamification in the EU” (YES! GAM-EU!) took place from the 10th -16th March in Portimão (Portugal).

The project gathers five organizations from five EU countries : YEU – Youth for Exchange and Understanding (Belgium), La Fenice (Italy), ABS – Active Bulgarian Society (Bulgaria), Hiraeth/Project 2020 (UK); and aims at fostering a new approach towards the EU as a vehicle for positive change. In order to do so, within the project we want to build a road-map that will allow youth not only to understand how the EU works and what it has been contributing to their lives so far, but also to reflect on how they can actively contribute to a better future for the Union.

During the event, more than 50 young people and youth workers gathered to better understand how to engage young people in the European Elections and how to reach disadvantaged groups, and created a program for local actions in their communities, to spread the campaign.

One of the main focuses of the training was the platform “Gamify EU”: it consists in a game, where people travel in time and space, from a world without the European Union to modern days, understanding better how the EU works, what are the rights of EU citizens and how the EU affects our life daily. The platform, presented in beta version, was tested by the participants to gather feedback on its functioning and possible implementation.

The Training Course took place in ISMAT (Instituto Superior Manuel Teixeira Gomes), a local university; the programme of the Training Course also included a debate night on the 13th of March, where the participants had the chance to meet and discuss four different topics with the local students from ISMAT: mobility programs, the impact of youth absenteeism on Brexit, the advantages (or disadvantages) of mandatory voting, and youth participation strategies. The night represented a moment of sharing and exchange between the multipliers involved in the project and their target group, young people who will vote for the first time in the European Elections 2019.

The activity was coordinated by Youth for Exchange and Understanding, and organized by DYPALL Network, with the support of Erasmus+ European Youth Together programme.

The platform ‘Gamify EU’ can be accessed here: https://gamifyeu.org/

During 22nd and 23rd of March, right after the training, the consortium of partners gathered in Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria, to evaluate and integrate the feedback received for the platform during the training in Portimão. This gathering resulted as well to define the next steps for the procedure of the project, specially for the youth exchange that will take place in Brussels, from 27th of April to 4th of May, where 60 young people will be present, and have the opportunity to visit the House of European History, Parlamentarium and YO Fest.