Active Communities for Development Alternatives

"Art Changes Lives" Project

The second part of March, 2011 AGORA Platform started the implementation of the project "Art Changes Lives" in partnership with Association "Tishina", Bulgaria, The Peace Action, Training and Research Institute of Romania (PATRIR ), Romania and Ucaneller Culture and Art House Association , Turkey.

The project has been funded with support from the European Commission, "Youth in Action" Programme , Youth support systems, Action 4.5 - Support to information activities for young people and those active in youth work and youth organisations. The logic of the project reflects the Programmes' priorities namely:
participation of young people; cultural diversity; European citizenship; inclusion of young people with fewer opportunities; media literacy and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

The duration of the project "Art Changes Lives" is 12 months and the objective is to create environment and promote youth's active citizenship through participation by:

  • fostering the mutual understanding between youth and the cooperation in the youth sector between EU member states and a candidate country through arts;
  • developing solidarity and promoting tolerance among youth founded on the notion of European citizenship;
  • provoking an increased interest in MDGs and the European citizenship values with artistic means based on cultural diveristy.

The project activities include holding of partnership meetings, research of the MDGs by the youth themselves in each of the three respective countries. As result of the research done, the project participants from each partner prepare presentation of the situation regarding the progress towards the achievement of MDGs in their country. In the summer of 2011 in Sofia, during the three day youth workshop, the young participants presented live their research to the partners and after discussions, games and group work drafted the "script" for their future art products.
During the summer and autumn of 2011 the young people work in their national groups to design and develop the art products in order to interpret the MDGs in a popular way through the arts:

  • The Bulgarian youth group from "Tishina" Association, Sofia is going to play a pantomime and dance performance featuring an MDG on their choice. The young actors will deliver their message through movement improvisations and pantomime choreography.
  • The Romanian partner will develop a forum theater performance. The forum theater has been recognized by UNESCO as a "tool for social change" and with its specific complexity of techniques supports people in their involvement and active role in the community. Allows them to find direct solutions of community problems, regardless of the topic - ecology, education, social or economic issues.
  • The Turkish youth plan for a puppet theater performance suitable for international audience (including children, youth and adults) on MDG on their choice.

The produced three audio-visual artistic products on MDGs will be presented live by the youth during the Youth Awareness Days, followed by a discussion. At the three project-partner countries is envisaged organization and holding of Youth Awareness Days: in Bulgaria - Sofia, Pleven and Burgas, in Turkey - Luleburgaz and Kirklareli and in Romania - at Cluj-Napoca and Bucharest. The next activities are related with dissemination on local level of the artistic products on MDGs.

At the end of the project it is envisaged: - youth from 3 countries to have gained civic participation skills that enable them to be more expressive and active EU citizens and to have transferred knowledge on global issues (MDGs); - three new art products to be designed and developed by youth through the "learning by doing" method; - increased positive awareness of other cultures by youth; - developed sense of tolerance and understanding of diversity through the involvement and active participation of youth with fewer opportunities.

Substantial impact is envisaged not only on the direct project participants but also on the development of sustainable partnerships and networking.

 This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.
This publication reflects the views only of the author (Platform AGORA), and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.