The partners of the European Erasmus + project Volem (VOLunteering for EMployability) organised a transnational meeting with about twenty young French and Italian people in Luxembourg from 10 to 15 June 2022.
The objective of this meeting was to propose to the young volunteers to reflect on the skills acquired during their volunteering and the possibility to have them recognised by digital Open Badges.Indeed, the last part of the Volem project consists in thinking about the creation and use of digital Open Bagdes to validate the skills acquired and have them recognised on the labour market. This innovative approach is based on the 8 key competences identified by the European Youthpass certification scheme, on the competences for the future identified by the World Economic Forum and on the soft skills studied during the first phase of the project.
In concrete terms, the young Italians and French followed a 5-day Design Thinking workshop,led by the Luxembourg partner Art Square Lab, allowing them to familiarise themselves with the fundamentals of this method and then to apply it in small groups to reflect on and co-create tools to validate the skills acquired. Based on the needs of the users (volunteers), the young people worked on original solutions and prototypessuch as apps in order to identify skills and to value them with potential future employers.
The creation of digital Open Badges enables the volunteer to carry out a self-assessment with his or her tutor throughout the period of volunteering in order to identify the skills acquired (and the level of mastery: beginner, advanced, etc.) and to set up an action plan to acquire new skills in line with his or her professional project. The volunteer thus becomes an active participant in his or her training course with the support of his or her tutor, who validates the various stages. At the end of the process, the young person acquires a portfolio of Open Badges that he or she will be able to use on his or her online CV (LinkedIn, etc.) with future employers. One of the challenges of the Volem project, in order to support this approach, is to propose an updated skills repository(competence model) allowing to follow the progression of the acquired skills.
During this transnational meeting, the young people showed an interest in Design Thinking and were creative during the working groups mixing French and Italian in order to favour interculturality. At the end of the project in 2022, dissemination activities will be proposed in France, Italy and Luxembourg in order to capitalise on the experience acquired during this pilot project.
Making volunteering a lever for professional integration through concrete actions to validate and promote the skills developed by young volunteers is a major challenge in a labour market that increasingly values transversal skills and the recruitment of personalities with a capacity for adaptation and openness necessary in a constantly changing world.
More information on: volem-project.eu (FR, IT, EN).