In July 2016 Organising Bureau of European School Student Unions (OBESSU) started implementing the project “Seeds for Integration” – Working towards building an inclusive secondary education environment which is financially supported by Open Society Foundations. The project is designed around the core idea that secondary school students have the will and capacity to find solutions for current social problems. Educational inclusion of migrant and refugee students is definitely one of them. However, in many cases the lack of resources prevents students from fully developing and implementing their ideas.
That is why OBESSU created Seeds for integration project whose goals are:
- To empower school students – regardless to where they come from – to take action in order to enhance the inclusion of their migrant and refugee peers into the school community and the secondary education environment and to raise awareness on a local, regional and national level on the issues migrant and refugee students are facing throughout their integration process.
- To build closer ties and create a dialogue between the school community and the communities migrant and refugee students are coming from.
- To further engage and enable OBESSU membership (national school student unions) to increase the dissemination efforts and visibility of Seeds for Integration on a national level and to work towards achieving a political impact with their funded initiatives.
- To foster and support initiatives that are designed and implemented as a joint effort of secondary school students and university students around the topic of the educational inclusion of migrant and refugee students, having a potential impact on national policy-making.
Within this project OBESSU provides seed-funding to secondary school student unions on local, regional and national level and to non-formal groups made up of secondary school students in order to empower them to implement initiatives whose goal is integration of pupils and students with migrant and refugee background.
During 2016 and 2017 we have supported more than 30 initiatives from 16 European countries whose value was more than 45.000 Euros. Even though the structure of the project has changed, the most important element stays the same – we are going to continue financing your creative ideas!
Seed-funding on two scales
In the first pillar of Seeds for integration programme we are providing small and large scale grants to grass-roots groups of school students, local, regional and national school student unions, so that they have resources to develop targeted local initiatives or projects with a regional or national level impact.
- For small scale projects we fund you up to 1000 Euros. This grant is awarded to local and regional secondary school student unions or small groups of students linked to either a particular school council or a grass-root community.
- For large scale projects we grant up to 4000 Euros. This grant is reserved to OBESSU membership (Member, Candidate and Affiliate Organisations).
Call for initiatives is going to be opened on February 26th and applications are going to be received on a rolling basis. That means that school students who want to apply can do that any time they want. Project proposals are going to be evaluated by the members of external selection committee throughout the year.
Dissemination through OBESSU membership
In addition, to the re-granting scheme, to strengthen visibility and outreach of the programme on national level and to ensure higher number of quality initiative proposals from grass-root and regional level, OBESSU Member, Candidate and Affiliate Organisations in 3 selected countries per year will be tasked to implement a so-called Inclusion Work Package (IWP) from an overall budget of maximum 7500 Euros per organisation.
The components of IWP are:
- To organise at least one big or several smaller events for a total of 100 students promoting “Seeds for Integration” project.
- To empower students interested in applying for funding, by providing them with a capacity building training (organizing project incubator event) and assistance during the process.
- To make sure that all the documentation (promotional materials, Call for applications, Application form guideline, Application form) is accessible to each student and that language barrier does not prevent interested students from applying. Additionally, organisations have the possibility to help the students by translating their project proposals from their native language to English.
All organisations that are interested to apply will be able to do so in period from February 26th to March 26th 2018.
Joint partnership projects
In cooperation with European Students’ Union (ESU) we are also financially helping initiatives and projects that are commonly implemented by secondary and university students’ councils. More details about this pillar will be published soon.