At its December 2016 meeting, the Programming Committee on Youth decided that, as from January 2017, the European Youth Foundation (EYF) will not apply the 4 working days minimum duration as a hard criterion for one-off international activities and international activities within an annual work plan. This decision was based on the needs expressed by youth NGOs willing to use new and innovative ways to ensure a non-formal approach for their activities.
Until now, a minimum of 4 working days has been required for international activities supported by the EYF. This requirement is based on the principles of non-formal education, which is one of the pillars of the Council of Europe’s youth sector. It aims to ensure high quality work plans and international activities in which participants have time to go through all learning processes and to reach intercultural awareness. The Council of Europe considers that four working days is the minimum duration to develop participant-centred and result-based activities using non-formal education methods and tools, and to allow participants to go through all learning phases.
Nevertheless, the EYF will continue to assess all new applications received (for one-off international activities and international activities within an annual work plan) on the basis of their merit and the quality of the programme provided and its non-formal education approach, including the duration of the activity.
NGOs applying for activities lasting less than 4 working days will have to provide in the application form clear and solid arguments to convince the EYF that the non-formal education elements required by the Council of Europe are still taken into account. This decision will be applied for a trial period and its implementation evaluated by the Programming Committee on Youth in June 2019.