Name of the organization: Values, Virtuals, Integrity Foundation
Brief description of the organization
“Values, Virtues, Integrity” Foundation is a Bulgarian NGO registered at the Sofia City Court on 5 March 2015, acting in the public interest.
The main goal of the Foundation is to foster the formation, promotion and embodiment of life-affirming values, virtues, and integrity in Bulgaria, Europe, America, and the globe at the levels of personality, family, organization, guild, community, and society in fields like education (formal and informal – for children, youths, and adults), science, arts and culture, sports and tourism, ecology and sustainable development, civic participation and public actions for the formulation of policies, healthcare and social activities, work with representatives of vulnerable (including Roma) groups, media, and other interested in the foundation’s sphere of activities organizations and institutions at the local, national and international levels.
The main mission of the Foundation is the creation and development of intelligence on values (or VQ – values quotient, similar to IQ and EQ – intelligence and emotional quotients) in Bulgarian society.
Problem addressed by the good practice
The project objectives are:
- to develop and strengthen the capacity of the partner organizations to provide social inclusion services based on the integrative arts and the group creative processes
- to increase their ability to work internationally by sharing ideas, creative methods, and good practices in the field
- to provoke cooperation in implementing and popularizing these effective and innovative practices at the local, regional, national, and international levels
- to develop important competences of staff members, associates, and served populations such as digital, ICT, social, civic, and creative skills competences as well as abilities and motivation of representatives of vulnerable groups to get into the mainstream of life
The main target groups are youth workers, trainers and young people.
Summary of the good practice
The project is a Strategic partnership for exchange of good practices, financed under the KA2 of Youth sector of the Erasmus+ Programme. It was a joint project of four organisations: “Values, Virtues, Integrity” Foundation (Bulgaria) (coordinator), International Center for Southern Europe (Italy), Association Intercultura (France) and Diverse and equal Association (Bulgaria). It took place in 2019 and it was organized as a series of events.
A short-term joint staff training in Samokov was organized between 22 and 25 June 2019 with 12 staff members from the four partner organizations. The program of the training included interactive sessions of collective creative processes (group finger painting, silk painting, clay work, decoupage, T-shirt design, etc.). The trainer from Association Intercultura, Fabrice Le Floch facilitated a workshop of Shadow Theatre (an integrative practice in which the public and actors are divided by a big white canvas). The facilitator of the International Center for Southern Europe Agnese Tomassini showed integrative practice with musical instruments, sound and body movement. At the end of the training, an exhibition was organized at the lobby of “Arena” hotel.
Blended mobility of youth learners took place between 20 and 24 August 2019 in Velingrad, Bulgaria. Altogether 24 young people and accompanying persons took place in the exchange. The participants had virtual facilitated dialogue sessions through Messenger in groups of 4 to 6 people two weeks before the physical mobility. The program of mobility included interactive games for getting to know each other, intercultural evenings and creative workshops on integrative arts, presented by facilitators from all participating countries. Project participants for the local community delivered a final artistic event in the centre of Velingrad.
Art is already a proven tool for social integration, used by “Values, Virtues, Integrity” Foundation for quite a while already. Different art techniques help remove the language barriers and provide young people with a way to express themselves freely and to understand others better.
Such training is very productive for international groups of young people who can build their interaction with others through the universal language of the arts.