YCreate European Project

Between 2018 and 2020 Collage Arts worked closely with Rinova and other international partners on HIT – ‘Hate Interrupter Teams’- project. Financed by the European Union’s Rights, Equality and Citizenship (REC) programme. HIT saw teams of young people, mainly aged between 14-19, working in task teams, supported by teachers and youth workers, local stakeholders, celebrities and other ‘opinion formers’ to counteract hate speech and behaviour towards migrants through the use of a variety of creative campaigning activities in London, Berlin, Rome and Barcelona as well as across Cyprus, Greece and in Bulgaria. HIT has been singled out by the REC programme as a case study in good practice.

In 2021 Collage Arts were awarded with a new project, which we collaboratively name YCreate.

#YCreate Voices for respect, celebrating difference and tackling hate – is a 2-year Erasmus+ Youth project managed by the British Council. YCreate also brings together community arts and cultural sector grassroots organisations, non-formal education practitioners, and young creatives in the Netherlands, Greece, Cyprus and Italy to develop new participatory youth peer mentoring and learning methods on issues of counteracting hate speech and misinformation through cultural practice in youth work settings. The partners are Rinova Ltd and ourselves (UK); Rozet (NL); MuLab (IT); The Smile of the Child (EL) and ”Hope For Children” CRC Policy Center (CY).

As well as HIT, YCreate builds on the #CREUS (also Erasmus+ funded), project, which we also implemented with us at Collage Arts. CREUS focused on arts’ based learning in ‘unconventional’ spaces through youth empowerment and peer mentoring. CREUS was awarded ‘best practice’ status by the UK Erasmus+ National Agency and has also been singled out by the EU as a ‘best of best practices’ project for a study into social inclusion and education.

Artistic Director Steve Medlin and Voices staff member Rocío Rodriguez-Inniss visited Athens last month to participate in a conference with all European partners. They report that the discussions were very positive and we look forward to moving this project forward in new and inventive ways.

The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflect the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.