Do we still meet or do we live mostly in our own bubbles? In recent years, we have seen a growing gap in society, especially depending on the level and type of education. We don't live in the same neighborhoods, we don't go to the same sports clubs or schools, we don't meet in the same places, and our priorities and interests are different.
All of this has negative consequences for social cohesion and the possibility of building a society in which everyone can find themselves. According to some, the current coronavirus crisis threatens this polarization. The crisis can accentuate the divisions between groups. It is therefore important, in the post-Corona era, to work on these cleavages and contribute to bridge the gaps in society.
During the coronavirus crisis, the personal growth and identity development of young people was also put under pressure. Indeed, one of the negative consequences of confinement and online education has been the reduction in social interaction and the increase in boredom, loneliness and mental problems among young people. Research shows that social contact and support can be important factors in resilience and recovery after a crisis.
With its new multi-year project Connecting You (th), the P&V Foundation wants to combine the need for social contacts and exchanges of young people with the societal need for diversified contacts, meetings and mutual understanding. In this way, it is possible to promote not only mental well-being, but also societal well-being and cohesion in society.
The project will consist of 2 components: a call for projects and a youth forum.
Call for projects
As part of its new Connecting You(th) call for projects, the P&V Foundation initiates a youth forum, so as to offer twenty young people aged 16 to 23 the opportunity to gain experience in active citizenship.
- The youngsters are between 16 and 23 years old and the group will be composed in the most diverse way possible.
- The forum began with an opening weekend in October 2021 and will end in May 2023.
- During this period, the young people meet physically four times and organize several digital meetings. They sit on the jury for our call for projects, also carry out project visits and actively participate in the project's closing event.
Weekend (1) :From 22 to 24 October 2021
Many speakers came to present tools to young people. A total of 2 working days and sessions on citizenship, the future of young people, the entrepreneurial spirit ...
The objective of the first meeting was to forge links, to get to know each other and to learn to debate in a benevolent environment. Through the visualization and facilitation of Visuality, the young people shared ideas in an informal atmosphere. They had the opportunity to meet academics, social entrepreneurs and coaches. All the sessions aimed to provide them with tools to debate and make decisions. They are now ready to actively participate as a jury in the Connecting Youth call for projects.
Discover the program of the first weekend here.
Weekend (2) :From 11 to 13 february2022
The youth forum met again for the final selection phase of the call for projects.
After a first selection, the P&V Foundation invited representatives of the most promising projects to an “Expert Day” in Brussels. The teams were able to present and defend their projects at the Youth Forum. Subsequently, the forum selected the fourteen winners from among 84 project proposals, seven Dutch-speaking and seven French-speaking. They receive funding between 5,000 and 25,000 euros depending on the requested budget.
Discover the program of the second weekend here.