On 28th September 2016, Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted Recommendation CM/Rec(2016)7 on Young People’s Access to Rights. The Recommendation highlights that access to rights requires young people, youth organisations and youth workers to know about the rights that young people should be able to enjoy and what they can do if their rights are violated.
On access to information (section 3.6), the Recommendation calls for the provision of "effective mechanisms for informing and advising young people of their rights and the possibilities for seeking redress if these rights are violated or withheld". The recommendation calls on Member States to establish or develop youth policies that more effectively facilitate young people’s access to rights. In this regard, Member States are invited to consider a series of specific measures to promote and facilitate young people’s access to rights and encourage local and regional authorities to do the same. The measures are set out under the following headings:
Education plays an essential role in the promotion of the core values of the Council of Europe: democracy, human rights and the rule of law, as well as in the prevention of human rights violations. More generally, education is increasingly seen as a defence against the rise of violence, racism, extremism, xenophobia, discrimination and intolerance.
This growing awareness is reflected in the adoption of the Council of Europe Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education by the Organisation’s 47 member states in the framework of Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)7.
The Charter is an important reference point for all those dealing with citizenship and human rights education. It will hopefully provide a focus and catalyst for action in the member states. It is also a way of disseminating good practice and raising standards throughout Europe and beyond.
The active participation of young people in decisions and actions at local and regional level is essential if we are to build more democratic, inclusive and prosperous societies. Participation in the democratic life of any community is about more than voting or standing for election, although these are important elements. Participation and active citizenship is about having the right, the means, the space and the opportunity and where necessary the support to participate in and influence decisions and engage in actions and activities so as to contribute to building a better society.
Don Bosco Youth-Net is a part of the worldwide Don Bosco Movement. This movement is based on the legacy of its founder: Don Bosco. Don Bosco developed an educational system based on a dialogue between the Christian tradition and the needs of the society he was living in. It is this educational system which still connects all people active in the Don Bosco Movement today; Don Bosco’s working style is our common denominator.
But the present-day society is different than that of Don Bosco’s time. A new sociological perspective of mankind and the differences between cultures within the Don Bosco Movement demand for a contemporary translation of the system. In order to do so we need to position Don Bosco Youth-Net within the current society and also within the current Don Bosco Movement. Afterwards we can present Don Bosco Youth-Net’s working style by focussing on 4 key elements: the educational themes of youth work Don Bosco Youth-Net is focussing on, the way we use the model of the “Oratory” as a method to build a strong learning environment, the way we create an educational flow through our educational programmes and the style of work of the educators involved in our network.
This document aims at defining the work we do, and how we do it. This is a challenging job for several reasons. On the one hand people involved in the Don Bosco Movement are more used to working through the system rather than defining it - Don Bosco’s statement that in assisting, educators should use “few words and a lot of action ...” only strengthens this tradition. On the other hand people from outside the Don Bosco Movement are asking what we are doing and in which manner it is different than that of others. Therefore we wrote this document in a style which we hope will be understandable for both.
Within the heritage of Don Bosco, the partners of Don Bosco Youth-Net strive together to realize the following aims:
To put these aims into practice, we develop Master Plan for the period of 3 years. The current master plan determines our strategy for the period 2015 – 2017 . Under the 4 strategic actions we are focussing on 4 fields of work: Education, Inclusion, Growth and Synergy.