Kickoff Meeting of the Erasmus+ Project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights”
Kickoff meeting of the Erasmus+ Project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights” was held in Belgrade on December 12, 2018. The project, envisaged as a combination of awareness raising and educational activities, is aimed at improving knowledge and information of young workers on their labour rights (what are their labour rights, what endangers them and how to protect them), so that they can work in fair, just and decent working conditions, being fully aware of these rights and exercising them.
Apart from the mentioned knowledge and information, the aim of the project activities is to help them develop a variety of skills, as well as self-confidence in order to help them create better perspectives in their lives. This project is seen as pilot activity in work with young workers and should result in sustainable model that can be replicated all over again as part of regular extracurricular educational activities of young workers, once they enter the labour market, in cooperation with trade unions and relevant institutions from Croatia, Serbia, Slovakia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Macedonia.
University of Rijeka, Center for Advanced Studies – South East Europe is the main project researcher, in charge of constructing the youth survey “Are you Familiar with your Labour Rights”, designed to gather and analyse data for further project activities to be implemented jointly by project partners in 2019.
Official project website
All news regarding the project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights” you can also follow on the official website at: pravauradu.org/en/.
On this web address you can find detailed information about the project and its phases, coordinator, partners and follow news regarding the project within the Erasmus+ programme European Union: KA2 – Capacity Building in the Field of Youth/Western Balkan Window.
Project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights” is implemented by Development Center for Youth Belgrade and Trade Union of Administration of Republic of Serbia, Trade Union Educational Center Banja Luka and Trade Union of Administration of Republic of Srpska, Foundation Budva and Trade Union of Administration and Judiciary of Montenegro, Coalition SEGA from Prilep and Trade Union UPOZ of Macedonia, Center for Advanced Studies – South Eastern Europe at the University of Rijeka and organization YouthWatch from Slovakia.
Project consortium meeting in Avala, Serbia
The second meeting of the Consortium took place in Avala, Serbia on April 8, 2019. The meeting’s agenda was opened with a presentation of the national and regional reports on the online Youth Survey “Are You Familiar with your Labour Rights” conducted by the main research partner – University of Rijeka, Center for Advanced Studies – South East Europe, in four partner countries: Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Macedonia. The presentation of the youth survey’s results was followed by joint planning of the next project activities – design of the project’s visual identity and the awareness raising campaign.
National reports on the level of youth information on labor rights
After comprehensive analysis of the situation on the field, conducted by an online youth survey “Are You Familiar with your Labour Rights?” among citizens of the regional countries, the project team presents the results of the research, which now constitute the starting point for all further activities within the project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights”. With this project, we are trying to improve the awareness of young people about their labor rights, in order to empower them to combat negative phenomena in working environment and improve their working standard.
Focus of the research was on young people under the age of 35, employed in public administration. Research was carried out by the Center for Advanced Studies of South East Europe at the University of Rijeka, with the support of the trade unions of administration and justice involved in the project implementation.
National Reports can be found at the official website and downloaded in pdf format.
Research is part of the project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights”, supported under the Erasmus+ program of the European Union: KA2 – Capacity building in the field of youth/Western Balkan Window.
The training for future peer educators “Labour Rights of Youth – Phenomena Endangering them and Mechanisms of Protection” was held in Bratislava, Slovakia, May 20 – 25, 2019.
Youth representatives – young union workers from Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, Croatia and Slovakia participated in an education on human rights, focusing on the working rights of the youth, and the threats that diminish these rights, with the actual mechanisms of protection. The education was designed with an aim of being shared with the peers in the home country as a direct result of the five-day training course in Slovakia.
The support to young youth workers, during the training and in their future work, besides the union representatives of the Project (Trade Union of Administration of Republic of Serbia, Trade Union Educational Center Banja Luka, Trade Union of Administration and Judiciary of Montenegro, Trade Union UPOZ of Macedonia), was given by the citizens’ associations focusing on the youth rights and the coordinator of the project – Development Center for Youth Belgrade, the training host YouthWatch, Foundation Budva and the Coalition SEGA from Prilep. The training was supported by UNIRI CAS SEE delegate Kristina Smoljanovic with a presentation focusing on the themes of future educational activities in correspondence with the national and regional research outlines and the organization of the activities to follow after the Bratislava training.
Peer educators’ workshops
Trade Union of Administration of Serbia and Jovan Dumić opened a series of peer educators’ workshops, to be followed by workshops held in Montenegro, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria and Macedonia, starting on June 27th and lasting throughout the summer to be concluded with a working meeting in Zlatibor, Serbia at the end of August.
During the workshops, young trade union activists from Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Slovakia and Croatia conveyed to their peers knowledge and skills on labor rights and mechanisms of protection against negative phenomena that endanger them, acquired during the training held in Bratislava in May.
As part of the meeting agenda, all previous steps on the project, implemented from December 2018, have been presented; also, peer educators have given presentations of local activities they carried out, and offered recommendations and suggestions for further steps that to be integrated into a joint project brochure.
In addition, during the meeting it has been noted the low level of awareness of young people about what the labor rights were, how to use and protect them, and it has been emphasized that young people are especially interested in getting acquainted with the concept of mobbing, considering it as the greatest threat to a stable working environment nowadays. Thanks to these workshops, many young people learned for the first time when they were entitled to use days off, how the overtime work should be treated, what was a prohibited behavior in working environment, and some of them for the first time realistically perceived the role of trade unions in protecting labor rights and work on strengthening the position of young people in working environment.
Participants of the meeting also discussed with members of the consortium development and implementation of a media campaign planned for September 2019, in order to present to wider audience the project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights” supported by the European Commission through the Erasmus+ program, KA2: Capacity Building in the Field of Youth. A selection of the most important messages that young educators have considered important for further transmission to peers has been made, and the videos have been prepared. Idea is to promote them on the social networks of project partners, with the aim of offering answers to the most common questions and misconceptions regarding labor rights of young workers and their actions and association – independently or through trade unions.
Consultative meeting has been led by Aleksandra Knežević, project coordinator and Nikola Sovrlić, a president of Development Center for Youth. Representatives of partner organizations also took the opportunity to hold the 4th consortium meeting, agreeing on details of the campaign, as well as on initial steps regarding the organization of the final conference of the project.
Promo video for the project „Rights at Work, Work on Rights“ has been launched
Young workers! And you who are not so young or are currently unemployed! Promo video for the project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights” is here!
The project has been conducted since December 2018 in cooperation among partners from trade union, youth and educational sector from Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Croatia and Slovakia, and video is one of products in a row that we have prepared in order to spread the word on labor right topic.
Take a look at what we have prepared for you. Follow our work because a lot of valuable staff follows, join our quest and inform yourselves about your labor rights. This is just a beginning.
The project is co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union.
Final Conference of the “Rights at Work, Work on Rights” Erasmus+ Project
The “Rights at Work, Work on Rights” Erasmus+ project, coordinated by Development Center for Youth from Belgrade, has been successfully completed during the past 12 months, and the results have been presented at the Final Conference and final consortium meeting on November 28-30, 2019 in Belgrade.
More than 60 representatives of youth associations, trade unions of administration and judiciary from the region, academia, institutions having in its portfolio topics of project, media, and other interested individuals were able to get acquainted with the work done and to exchange ideas and constructive proposals jointly developing further activities in the field of youth labor rights.
Mr. Zlatan Klokić, Minister of European Integration and International Cooperation of Republika Srpska, Mrs. Bojana Stanić, State Secretary of the Ministry of Labor, Employment, Veterans’ and Social Affairs of the Republic of Serbia and Mr. Tobias Flessenkemper, Head of of the Council of Europe Office in Belgrade underlined the relevance of the topic and linking all present actors during their opening speeches.
In continuation, Mrs. Aleksandra Knežević, the main project coordinator presented the achieved, starting from the fact that young person’s satisfaction with his/her work life is an important part of the overall life satisfaction and that satisfied worker is the most productive one. In line with this, consortium members carried out a series of activities aimed at information and education of young people about their labor rights, phenomena endangering them, and available mechanisms of protection.
During the conference, members of the consortium proudly emphasized their own contribution to these topics, showing concrete results as follows: a detailed regional analysis of the level of youth awareness/information on their rights in work environment; 24 peer educators trained for further transfer of knowledge and information on youth labor rights in their immediate environments; over 40 workshops attended by more than 600 young people who have learned this way about the project’s topics, but also shared their own experiences; 3.5 million people from different age groups tackled through a broad media campaign, who also get acquainted with the project messages.
However, particularly significant products, having a long-lasting value, which will be used even after a project lifetime are – 10 videos with frequently asked questions and answers in the field of youth labor rights, dynamic animation and a brochure “Guide throug youth labor rights, phenomena endangering them and available mechanisms of protection”. Their aim was to present to a young worker, in an understandable and youth-friendly manner, all that constitutes his/her work environment today, offering informative material that tries to answer many of questions and concerns that young people face today after obtaining their first job.
Particularly dynamic part of the Conference was a panel discussion “On the Labor Rights of Youth from the Perspective of…” which presented reflections and attitudes of the representatives of institutions, trade union sector, media, international trade union community and youth sector. In addition to members of the consortium, Mr. Božo Marić, president of the Trade Union of Administration of Republika Srpska and Mrs. Aleksandra Knežević, this time in the role of human rights expert, Mr. Todor Skakić, representative of the Ministry within the Government of Republika Srpska, Mrs. Dušica Tasić, editor in Radio-Television of Serbia and Mr. Miodrag Pantović, engaged in the regional office of Solidarity project also participated in this discussion.
During the project, encompassing representatives of the youth, trade union and education sectors from Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Croatia and Slovakia, a series of constructive proposals for further work has been made – from the one that information should start already at high school age till the one that other sectors should join as well, and this is a homework for consortium members in the months to follow. During the Conference, additional suggestions were made and on behalf of the consortium and trade unions involved, presented by Mr. Božo Marić, following interactive work in smaller groups.
“We have raised some very important questions – issues that on the long-term level can contribute to creation of a work environment tailored to the young person’s needs, and that is why it is up to us to continue imposing this topic as socially significant one for all actors who can contribute to concrete changes”, said Mrs. Aleksandra Knežević when closing the conference, adding that “partners have signed an agreement for a further cooperation and planned a number of joint projects, which is another proof that the consortium sees the end of this project exclusively as – a new beginning. The beginning of continuous and organized work on creating the conditions for quality life and work of young people in the Western Balkans, with the participation of all stakeholders from the community”.
Development Center for Youth, Trade Union of Administration of the Republic of Serbia, Trade Union of Administration of Republika Srpska, Trade Union of Administration and Justice of Montenegro, Trade Union of UPOZ of North Macedonia, Center for Advanced Studies – Southeast Europe at the University of Rijeka, Trade Union Education Center, Coalition of Youth Organizations SEGA, Budva Foundation and YouthWatch will harmonize in the next days all materials collected and prepare findings and recommendations from the Final conference, as well as a plan of further action, which will encompass official institutions in the next phase, too.
The process itself and intensive communication with young people have shown that this issue is of great importance to youth and has a direct impact on their overall lives, which gives additional value to the project implemented by the consortium with the support of the European Union through the Erasmus+ program, KA2: Capacity Building in the Field of Youth/ Western Balkan Window – ant this was a clear message that marked the Final conference of the project “Rights at Work, Work on Rights”.
Final Project Consortium Meeting
After the final conference, which exceeded all expectations of the consortium, both in terms of the structure of participants and proposals received for further joint work, a final meeting of the consortium members was held, which brought together all partner organizations except the partner from Slovakia, due to current impediment. The partners analyzed achieved results, from the first to the last activity, looking back jointly on all good and less good sides of the joint work and making a comprehensive evaluation of accomplished, in order to make joint work even more successful in the upcoming period.