January 2020 – December 2021

The past year has been marked again by rising instability in the Western Balkan (WB) region. This ranges from large scale ongoing protests in Serbia and Bosnia, increasing tensions over borders, trade disputes and the closing of markets and unsanctioned violence against journalist.

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All of these factors pose significant impediments to the economy, democratic processes, the wellbeing of individuals and also to the process of joining the EU. One of the key underlying reasons behind the tensions plaguing WB is an ever-increasing torrent of nationalism that characterizes local and regional politics and the relations between neighboring countries. Extremism based on national, ethnical or religious background is one of the most evident destabilizing factors both in the EU and in the WB. Thus, the consortium designed Understanding and Challenging Nationalist Extremism — a project that uses a bottom-up approach to tackling nationalist extremisms through educating youth workers (from the EU and WB), designing a toolkit and developing non-formal education methods, through which youth workers from partner countries will empower youth to address cases of extremism. Many large-scale top-down initiatives overlook the fact that virulent nationalism is entrenched in culture and the most effective long-term strategy for diminishing it is to make it culturally less acceptable and for this to succeed, the key target group is youth. The consortium includes 11 organisations from 10 countries coming from the EU and neighboring regions.

Objectives:
– Increase the level and intensity of cooperation between programme countries and partner countries from WB.
– Create a robust youth anti-extremism platform focused on the WB but working with a decidedly inter-regional and trans-sectoral perspective
– Increase the capacities of youth organisations based in WB.
– Increase the competences of youth workers in WB, the EU and beyond.
– Educate youth about recognizing and opposing extremism.
– Design a toolkit for educating youth about nationalist extremism and enable youth leaders to better do this.

Activities:
– 2 transnational project meetings
– 3 mobilities of youth workers (at least 24 participants per activity)
– 1 youth exchange (at least 58 participants)

Outputs:
– toolkit
– 1 international conference
– 3 webinars
– webpage
– 5 cultural events / public interventions
– 4 press conferences

Partners:
EPEKA Srbija
EPEKA Slovenija
Qendra Open Doors Albania
Omladinski Resorsni Centar Tuzla BIH
Filodasikos Cyprus
EPEKA UK
EPEKA Berlin
CET Prizren
Centrual Educational de resurse Romania

Project duration: 1th January, 2020 – 31th December, 2021

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The Association EPEKA, Soc. Ent., is supported by: