Asociacija “Aktyvus jaunimas”
Active Youth” Association (Asociacija “Aktyvus jaunimas”) is a non-profit organization based in Kaunas that unites young leaders from Lithuania willing to work on a voluntary basis to facilitate an intercultural dialogue and enhance competence of the European youth. We cooperate with organizations of similar profile from all over Europe (more than 50 partnerships) to organize events and trainings using non-formal education as a powerful instrument to encourage youth to take an active part in a society. By doing this we help young people to improve their skills and social awareness, share experiences and ideas, integrate them within the multinational environment of the EU, facilitate cooperation, create new joint initiatives, increase their social awareness, and promote healthy lifestyle. In particular, we concentrate on youth (18-30 years old) that have fewer opportunities and/or disadvantaged backgrounds.
Generally, our aims are to: (1) enhance entrepreneurial, social, leadership, communication skills, self-esteem, as well as multilingualism of youth through non-formal education; (2) help youth increase their social awareness, be tolerant towards others, be aware of the persisting social and environmental problems and help solve them; (3) educate youth workers and youth on how to join volunteering initiatives, cooperate with each other, and get employed more easily; (4) organize joint campaigns, projects and activities, where young people and youth workers can get involved in an intercultural dialogue, be a part of the decision making process, develop the spirit of volunteerism, facilitate youth cooperation and social values; (5) raise awareness about EU citizenship among young people, educate about social responsibility and work towards reducing youth unemployment in the EU; (6) organize youth seminars, exchanges, trainings for youth workers, conferences and discussions on relevant social topics, promote healthy, active, and ecologically friendly lifestyle in order to increase the well-being of youth. Inform about similar actions organized by others in Europe; (7) defend and promote human rights, universal values of tolerance, active citizenship, democracy, equal opportunities and work towards the elimination of discrimination in order to build a better integrated society; (8) organise Erasmus+ projects and spread information about the opportunities that lie behind it in order to further facilitate youth development.
Apart from other activities, we have also hosted Erasmus+ youth exchanges and youth worker mobility in Lithuania addressing key social topics for youth. Firstly, we organised a youth exchange on tolerance for minorities (“Let’s Turn Discrimination into Tolerance”), where young people gathered to help the minorities across Europe integrate easier to the society and get better opportunities both in social and work life. Secondly, we have organised both youth worker mobility and a youth exchange on the topic of Social Entrepreneurship (“More than Money: Social Entrepreneurship Heroes”). Here youth workers have shared their experiences, learned about social entrepreneurship and the ways to teach it to young people; whereas, unemployed have gained important knowledge on the topic and increased their chances of getting employed or create their own social enterprises. Since then we have hosted 6 more Erasmus+ projects (as of April 2016).