In September 2014, YES Forum was invited by the SALTO Inclusion and SALTO Cultural Diversity Resource Centres to take part in a roundtable consultation in London for the development of an integrated “Inclusion & Diversity Strategy” for the new Erasmus+ programme. The strategy has been recently made available.
In collaboration with the European Commission, the two SALTO research centres gathered together youth workers and experts to critically discuss the former inclusion strategy, and offer recommendations for reaching young people with fewer opportunities. In the consultations, YES Forum's Director, Annett Wiedermann, drew attention to the danger of perpetuating stigmatising categories such as "vulnerable young people" instead of portraying them as people with complex social backgrounds, abilities as well as failings.
Furthermore, so-called "soft skills" such as communication abilities, knowledge of foreign languages, cultural tolerance and optimism for the future should also be promoted and developed. These are not only important for young people's inter-personal relationships and self-esteem, but also necessary for the development of active citizenship and democracy.
More information about the Erasmus+ "Inclusion & Diversity Strategy" can be found here.