Between 19th and 21st November 2014, in Strasbourg, Viktória (Vica) Bedő represented EFIL on the „Unfolding youth work – Seminar on the recognition of competences of youth leaders and youth workers: introducing the European youth work Portfolio – a tool for the assessment and development of youth work competence”.
The European Portfolio for youth leaders and youth workers exists in paper/PDF format (download here: http://www.coe.int/t/dg4/youth/resources/portfolio/portfolio_EN.asp) since 2006. Now the Council of Europe is working on an online platform for this self-assessment tool, which will be launched in April 2015.
This seminar was not only the introduction of a great tool, which could be useful for EFIL member organisations, but the fact that the developers dedicated three days for consultation with a very diverse group made it special: government representatives, international youth organisations, national and local NGOs and universities from all over Europe.
The Portfolio could be useful for AFS volunteer leaders to assess their competences and translate them to be used for diverse purposes, such as stepping forward in the volunteer life cycle, for employability (CV, motivation letters, interviews), for external recognition of their experience, etc.
We would all be happy if finally we would no longer hear the shocking question “You work without getting a salary?!” – right?
The Portfolio helps to draw up the gained competences connected to a few examples and also gives space to plan future learning process, set up goals and prepare users to talk about the competences gained through youth work.
The seminar participants gathered not just to try out and give feedback on the online Portfolio, but also to discuss the issues about the recognition of youth work and non-formal education in Europe.
For the ones who are interested in the topic, we suggest this publication from November 2013 by the Youth Partnership of the Council of Europe and the European Union: Getting there (http://pjp-eu.coe.int/documents/1017981/7110668/GettingThere_WEB.pdf/45deb8f6-7972-4e4e-aab9-86fb4a7cfb3e)
EFIL takes active part in the advocacy work and lobbying for the official external recognition of youth work, what in AFS national organisations’ case, would mean easier connection to the national education system, support for and one step towards employability, wider recognition of the exchange programmes and volunteering, and competences gained through them.
We encourage all the AFS organisations and their volunteers to try out the Portfolio!
For more information about the event: [email protected]
For further information on the youth work recognition process: [email protected]