There is a rising interest in youth work as a volunteer and professional practice in Europe, today. There are more studies than ever conducted on the topic of youth work at national and European levels and some of this interest has also been linked to the topic of youth extremist violence and youth work as a preventive practice.
With this increasing interest in youth work it is important to bring two clarifications related to the practice of youth work:
– youth work, as a value based practice has always been active in preventing youth extremist violence or other forms of violence trough providing young people with the skills and knowledge to make their own informed decisions
– we can value youth work because it is preventive practice but also beyond this role in preventing youth extremist violence and thus it should not be valued exclusively for its preventive role.
So today amid a surge in youth related problems and budget cuts, youth work in Europe is unchanged in its dedication to empower young people through non-formal learning in order to promote democratic and civil society and to encourage them to be actively involved in their communities.
And if the current European youth context is changing, youth work’s needs are roughly the same as they were a decade ago: recognition, better funding and closer cooperation between youth work and other sectors to unlock youth work’s full potential, also in preventing violent radicalisation.
the European Commission
from SALTO-Youth Cultural Diversity Resource Centre