YOUth are the Voice
Twelve countries, twenty-five participants gathering in Finland and one same goal: being the voice. Not a voice that sings, but a voice that can be heard and understood. A voice that spreads in the new channels like a melody, smooth and strong. “YOUth are the Voice” is the name of the training course that started on the 13th and ended in the 21st of August. Social Media was the main theme explored in this project organized by the Youth House of Lapua and the Youth services of Seinäjoki, under the Erasmus funding. The course aimed to students, volunteers, teachers, journalists and youth workers of several organizations send their participants to live this new experience.
The representative of the youth services in Seinäjoki, Terhi Hunnakko, explained that “The background of this training course is the regional youth information and counselling service called JIBBO. They have developed social media with projects last two, three years and then they started to think that maybe it’s good to learn something in an international way”.
The trainers that were chosen to this project were Marco, from Brazil, currently living in Estonia, and Lorenzo, from Italy. Both have large experience in European projects, Erasmus , youth work and communication. Rhetoric, persuasion, stereotypes, symbols, critical thinking and targeting groups were some of the main topics discussed on this training course.
Likewise the diversity of the countries, participants also have different motivations to join the YOUth are the Voice. They want to improve their communication skills, English language, getting to know new cultures, learn about new technologic tools and how to impact people, youth in concrete, on social media and campaigns.
Simona Schennach, from Austria, clarified that she decided to participate in this Erasmus project because social media is quite a big part of her work, which is related with youngsters, so she had the feeling she needed to improve her knowledge in this field. On the other side, Marco Aiello, from Italy, explained that he came because of the “Nordic culture and Finland, that have been a passion for a long time, and also the topic was also something that I wanted to explore”.
This training course has been a success for the organizers of both youth services and youth house of Seinäjoki and Lapua, Terhi Hunnakko and Samppa Taivalmaa. “I think this project went very well, the participants have reached new tools, concrete ones, they learnt new aspects and it’s also important that they get international contacts and connections so they can cooperate in the future”, they added. nternational work is for both municipalities “Important and maybe in the future there is a chance of some new cooperation between these two cities”, explained Terhi Hunnakko.
Finland, Portugal, Spain, Estonia, Italy, Slovenia, Slovakia, Austria, Poland, Czech Republic, Greece and Germany will continue their journey on finding the voice they want to be within their society. After the end of the training course, on Tuesday 21st of August, the participants left Finland with improved knowledge, critical thinking and brand new tools for their future as professionals and active citizens.
Pictures: Inês and Patrick