1. Explaining non-formal learning to employers and educators. It is essential to increase the recognition and validation of non-formal learning in business contexts and in the total education sector. This will help providers, young people and potential employers to appreciate the learning and development that occurs. Recognition of non-formal learning is a crucial objective of Erasmus +. It is important to understand that the wide range of competences gained are not limited to so called ‘soft’ skills, and to demonstrate how they contribute to innovation and creativity –
2. Translating non-formal learning outcomes to the world of work There is a need to promote the validation of learning outcomes gained in non-formal learning and youth work in a vocabulary that is understandable to educators and employers.. A link to the European Qualifications Framework is needed. It will be important to develop, provide and make the most of existing user-friendly, accessible tools (for example Youthpass, Europass) that can enhance the ability of non-formal education workers and youth workers to offer activities that promote innovation and creativity in young people, and make young people aware of the skills gained through participation in such activities.
3. Enhancing the ability of those working directly with young people
4. Developing a strong focus on entrepreneurship Non-formal education workers play a crucial ‘catalytic’ role, especially with those young people who are disadvantaged and hard to reach. There is a need to enhance the capacity of these workers, especially youth workers, to promote innovation and creativity in young people. Training and continuing professional development needs to be informed by EU wide reviews of nonformal learning, practices and qualifications frameworks. The Entrepreneurship Action Plan and the Communication on Rethinking Education, asks Member States to ensure that all young people have a concrete entrepreneurial experience before leaving education. With a stronger focus on entrepreneurship youth work can play a greater role in connecting young people with the local community, including social enterprise and business, thus enhancing their opportunities to find a job, or to start their own project.
5. Improving partnership working and cross-sector innovation There is a need to bring together representatives of the public, private and voluntary sectors, including employer organizations, large, medium and small companies, young people and youth organizations, to raise awareness of the benefits of non-formal learning. To achieve cooperation and joint action between stakeholders and the social partners, there is a need to incentivise all stakeholders. Partners should pay particular attention to reaching disadvantaged and unskilled young adults with a specific focus on local, municipal and regional levels. This will enable a favourable operating context for the work by optimising resources and helping to provide more.