The CoYOUTHworking working group met in Amsterdam from the 16th to 19th of December 2019.
The team, composed by two youth workers from each of the 5 partner organizations, has the task of developing the contents that will then flow into the final project’s outputs: guide-lines for coworking space managers/staff members, a Competence Model and the website.
These tools will be aimed at facilitating the implementation of practices that can make coworking spaces more inclusive for young people, supporting them in the development of their business projects, as well as making them protagonists in the processes of involvement of the local community in the activities promoted by the coworking itself.
This first work group, hosted by the Dutch partner Impact Hub Amsterdam, was useful to share successful experiences in involving young people in coworking spaces in Europe, and to define together "indicators" that will guide the recognition of good practices in this area.
The identified quality standards represent the final result of a very stimulating debate that involved all the partners, each of whom was representative of different cultural contexts, but who share the same European reference framework and aims of youth work.
This is precisely the added value of the projects promoted by Erasmus +: they make it possible to "put together" the strengths of the experiences of the various participating countries, finding answers to common needs. The dialogue thus made it possible to analyze the practices promoted in France to tackle the unemployment of young people in rural areas by stimulating the creation of social cooperatives; the experiments of the Portuguese partner to create a direct link between the Youth Center and the coworking space which so far welcomes professionals of an older average age; the skills of the Dutch of creating and managing youth communities within the coworking, in such a way as to stimulate social relations, a sense of belonging and entrepreneurial skills at the same time; the ability of the Croatian organization to organize events and recreational moments that become reference points for the young people of the city; finally, the Italian experiences of collaboration between public bodies and policies and coworking spaces.
On the basis of the indicators identified and with the support of the Design Department of the Politecnico di Milano (which is responsible for the scientific and methodological review of the project’s products), two tools were created for data collection: the first is a questionnaire aimed at young people, useful to investigate their expectations with respect to a welcoming and functional coworking space for their needs; the second tool, a grid for observing and collecting information on virtuous practices in the context of involving young people in coworking spaces (not only in Europe, but all over the world).
In the next month, the dissemination of the questionnaires at local level in the partner countries and the systematization of the information will follow.
During the meeting, there was no lack of moments of "exploring" of the territory and local business projects: the staff of Impact Hub Amsterdam guided the representatives of the organizations on a study-visit to the TQ headquarters. The space hosts the “Young Creators”, a community of young and ambitious talents who share useful information on job opportunities, debates on entrepreneurship and new technologies, training, consultancy, contacts with companies and events open to the local community.
The partners also had the opportunity to participate (also actively, through voting) in an Elevator Pitch event that inspired future initiatives by the Municipality of Cinisello Balsamo and the HubOut platform.
CoYOUTHworking begins to shape.