CYPRUS ORGANISATION FOR SUSTAINABLE EDUCATION & ACTIVE LEARNING (SEAL CYPRUS)

SEAL CYPRUS is a non-profit organisation based in Nicosia, the ethnically divided capital of Cyprus. With our work, we try to overcome the results of the urban division, and our members are from both ethnic groups.

  1. To provide educational opportunities to young people and youth professionals (youth workers & youth trainers) to improve the level of key competences and skills and to boost employability.
  2. To advocate the recognition of non-formal education, lifelong learning and youth work.
  3. To promote quality improvements in youth work and youth training, in particular through cooperation between organisations in the youth field and other stakeholders at European and international level.
  4. To reinforce the link between the youth field and the labour market.

SEAL CYPRUS supports the professional development of youth workers through the implementation of international training courses (Erasmus+ / KA1). We use a wide range of innovative interactive educational methods to provide open and distance learning, non- formal education, e-learning and on the job training.

We have coordinated:

-“Make an Impact!” (2015). This project provided our organisation with substantial experience in Dissemination and Exploitation of project Results (DEOR) which we are planning to apply to the project to bring a strong multiplication effect.

-“Know the Way- Go the Way- Show the Way” (2015) provided the participants with opportunities to learn and practice Leadership and increase their employment opportunities.

-“Making Ideas Happen” & “ARTrepreneurship” (2016). With both projects, we promoted entrepreneurship through youth work.

– “Youth Minded” about the mental health of the young people in the era of the social media. With this project, we explored the links between the (social) media and mental health. For this project, we ran a campaign in the social media with the title #realpeople.

– “YOUTHPASS EXPANDED” (2017) aiming at recognition and certification of non-formal learning with the EU transparency and recognition tool YOUTHPASS.

– “Go Digital” (2018) on Digital Competences and Media Literacy which are closely related, and both draw on the same core skill of Critical Thinking. Emphasis was given on the importance of digital media for the inclusion of migrants and refugees.

– “Human Rights Education versus Cyber-hate” (2018) is a project to tackle hate speech and radicalisation.

– “Dandelion Effect” (2018- 2019), a project on digital tools for dissemination of project results and visibility.

– “ADD ME” (2019- 2020), a project on digital youth work in the social media era.

 

Our target group consists of youth professionals, people interested in the welfare of the youth, and young people, including those with fewer opportunities (i.e. people who face social barriers, financial barriers, disabilities, learning difficulties, cultural differences, health problems or geographical difficulties), immigrants and refugees.

We employ 3 full-time and 1 part-time staff and we are now hiring project officers.  In order to implement our projects, we hire several professionals, including IT experts, trainers, researchers, and career advisers. We have a large network that allows us to activate the necessary number of young people and volunteers, who may organise or participate in all the activities and events.

Last year, we provided training courses to more than 300 people. The learners were youth professionals and young people with fewer opportunities; mainly NEET’s. During the last four years, we prepared approximately 120 youth workers from Cyprus to participate in mobility projects coordinated by our partners abroad.

SEAL CYPRUS is an active supporter of the  NO HATE SPEECH Movement, the youth campaign of the Council of Europe for human rights online, to reduce the levels of acceptance of hate speech and develop online youth participation and citizenship. SEAL CYPRUS is a member of the European Network “European Youth United” and the “MV International (MVI), a network of NGO from EU, Africa, Latin America and Asia. MVI cultivates social involvement, and directs community building activities towards inclusive, sustainable and reflective societies.

SEAL CYPRUS is an affiliated partner of the Nicosia Municipality Multifunctional Foundation, the department of the municipality responsible for social support of vulnerable parts of the population, people in poverty, unemployed, refugees and immigrants. Members of our organisation provide voluntary services to the above target- groups.

 

SEAL CYPRUS has experience as a coordinator in three Erasmus+ KA2 “Strategic Partnerships for Youth.”

(1) “TRACES- Supporting youth to manage their digital & social media presence” (2019- 2021). With this project we are developing Digital and Social Media Literacy Curriculum Resources, In-service Training Handbook, Collaborative online Learning Database, E-learning Portal, Library of Case Studies, Guidelines for Youth Workers working with Digital Media.

 (2) “CURSOR- Crafting Career Roadmaps” (2018- 2020). We are developing a Training Handbook and digital tools for youth workers to use in their work to support young people with fewer opportunities in Career Planning. The digital tools are aiming in building career management competences in four areas: (1) SELF- to develop the sense of self within society, (2) STRENGTHS- to build on strengths and pursuing rewarding learning and work opportunities, (3) HORIZONS- to visualise, plan and achieve career goals, (4) NETWORKS- to develop relationships and support networks.

(3) “ARTSQUAD” (2017- 2019). After researching youth work and blended learning opportunities for youth workers in Cyprus, Ireland, Estonia and Romania, we developed a Training Curriculum and digital tools for professionals who wish to use Digital Media, Storytelling, Drama and Music in youth work.

 

We are partners in the Strategic Partnership in Adult Education “EXEMPLAR- Young Migrant Integration Leaders” (2018- 2020) coordinated by JUGEND- UND KULTURPROJEKT E.V. (Germany). The objectives of the project are: (a) to develop a training programme curriculum addressed to young male migrants (b) to develop an in-service training programme for front-line youth workers and trainers working in migrant support organisations to assist them in delivering the Integration Leaders curriculum.

 

In the field of Youth, we are partnering in two Strategic Partnerships:

(1) “Forest Schools and Bushcraft Practices” (2019- 2022) coordinated by Essex Boys and Girls Clubs (U.K).

(2) “Young Female Entrepreneurs Program” (2019- 2021) coordinated by Autokreacja (Poland).

 

 

We are also partnering in a Capacity Building (Western Balkans Youth Window projects) titled “Promoting Equality through Gender-sensitive Journalism” and in the Europe for Citizens project “EU DEFENCE NETWORK”.

 

SEAL CYPRUS is leading a 10-partner consortium in the project “DARE- Day One Alliance for Employment” (2018-2021) with the support of 1.2 million Euros from the EEA and Norway Grants/ Fund for Youth Employment.  DARE is aiming at strengthening transnational cooperation to address European challenges in the area of youth employment”.

FIELDS OF EXPERTISE

Training for Competence Development

With participatory teaching and learning methods, we motivate and empower youth and adult learners to acquire the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values necessary to shape a sustainable future.

Starting from the needs of the learners, we provide blended learning solutions based on scientific ground. We use a wide range of innovative interactive educational methods to provide open and distance learning, non- formal education, e-learning and on the job training.

Educational curricula

We are developing educational curricula for short training courses for youth workers but also for Strategic Partnerships.

For our Strategic Partnership ARTSQUAD, we have created a full suite of modules for a Train-the-Trainer Curriculum. The objective is to support youth professionals working with disadvantaged youth to use Digital Media, Storytelling, Drama and Music in their work with the youth

For our Strategic Partnership CURSOR, we are developing an In-service Training Programme Handbook. The handbook will be used by youth professionals to support young learners in their career planning endeavours with the use of contemporary Digital Tools.

For our Strategic Partnership TRACES, we are developing an in-service training Curriculum, Online Educational Resources, and a Training Handbook to be used by youth professionals to support the young people manage their online presence.

Research

We are using research to identify the needs and preferences of the key target groups of our project. Needs analysis and state-of-the-art are part of many of our projects. Moreover, we have researched the “Youth Trainers in Cyprus”.

Digital tools in training and youth work

SEAL CYPRUS has a team of versatile professionals that can undertake the digital part of an educational project. We build powerful and scalable web apps that are custom made using agile development processes leveraging the latest web technologies. We are flexible in our approach and diverse in our skill-set. Each project is different, and we treat it as such.

The advantage of our organisation is that we can pilot our digital tool with diverse target groups of young people, youth workers, youth trainers/ facilitators, and adult educators.

Dissemination and Visibility

SEAL CYPRUS has substantial experience in communication and dissemination strategies. We provide training on Dissemination and Exploitation to other organisations in Europe and MEA too.

Standardized procedures

In SEAL CYPRUS we value efficiency. By following standardized procedures in all the managerial aspects of our projects, we are capable to focus on the quality of the intellectual outputs.