A shared observation: there is a lack of contact between young people and the Alps
Worldwide, specialists diagnose a lack of contact from young people to their living space. Among Alpine youth, it leads also to the dying out of Alpine identity and mountain-related know-how. The young people of the Alps, among whom there is little awareness of the values and opportunities offered by the natural and cultural heritage of the Alps, are finding it difficult to settle in mountain areas on a long-term basis.
There is therefore unquestionably an urgent need for young people to be better informed and made more aware of their Alpine heritage, including of what it can offer them in terms of economic and social opportunities.
YOUrALPS tackles the challenge to raise Youth awareness on Alpine heritage
The aims of the INTERREG Alpine Space YOUrALPS project (2016-2019) are to give structure to the field of mountain education throughout the Alps and incorporate the values and knowledge of mountains and the Alps more fully in practices but also in educational curricula and syllabuses.
YOUrALPS includes several actions. It’s about identifying, interconnecting and involving the various players scattered over the Alpine territory in a transalpine network which will promote exchanges, synergies and cooperation in this field. A participative webplatform will be one of the tools of this network.
An analysis of the experiences and good practices in mountain environment education throughout the Alps, (including an in-depth study of the political strategies of each country in this field) will be presented in a comparative report. It will include recommendations and will be distributed among the decision-makers of each country. Thanks to exchanges, training, workshops and trials in pilot sites it will be possible to create an "Alpine school model". The model will also be completed by a toolbox of teaching resources linked to Alpine heritage.
The project has direct and long-term impacts
The Alpine School model will directly benefit the students, educators and decision-makers involved, as well as the future generations of pupils. Decision makers will have at their disposal a transferable model. YOUrALPS will create new opportunities for youth and increase their empowerment and engagement in the Alpine territory, to better shape their future.
January 2017 – The project is launched
On 18th and 19th January, the kick-off meeting brought together in Chambéry (Fr) 41 participants, coming from 6 Alpine countries (13 project partners, 25 observers and the representatives of the Alpine Space programme).
Thanks to this meeting the partners were able to get to know each other better and to appropriate the general context of the YOUrALPS project and the Alpine Space programme. A workshop was held on this occasion to build common references on mountain education. Two other working periods resulted in the laying down of the basis for a future international network and the webplatform associated with it. The atmosphere was warm and constructive, a good foundation for this ambitious 3-year project.
The next Project Steering Committee meeting is planned for July in Slovenia.
The YOUrALPS Project is financed through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) Interreg – Alpine Space programme
The 13 project partners