Implementation and approbation of an innovative approach to work engagement and inclusion of young people at risk through alternative programs.

The innovative system for work engagement and inclusion of young people at risk, marginalized youth, youths with criminogenic behavior and ultras through sports programs, animal-assisted therapy, craft entrepreneurship and music therapy, will be an entirely new model for Bulgaria. Social inclusion and adaptation to the labor market of the specific target group will be achieved through creative and practically applied activities. Change in the group’s behavior will be achieved through encouragement of the individual qualities of each member- their physical activity, creativity, entrepreneurial spirit, artistry etc. The alternative programs are designed specifically in order to achieve success.


To make sure the group will be effectively reached during the approbation, I CAN has contracted a pre-project agreement with the National Police Service and the National Social Action Commission for inclusion of youths at risk, those with criminogenic behavior and those who are neither in employment, nor in education.


SubActivity1: Sports activities- football, table tennis and court tennis

Studies show a correlation between problems among the inactive, unsatisfied and disadvantaged young people and the lack of physical activity. Sports play a key role when it comes to their willingness to participate in society and the labor market.  A main part of the innovative system is the sports program. The realization of the sports activities will include the capacity of both I CAN (use of sports practices for integration and inclusion of marginalized youth groups) and Footura (organizing sports events, tournaments and innovative sports initiatives).


SubActivity2: Craft Entrepreneurship

The hard integration of young people at risk, in particular those with criminogenic behavior and ultras, is largely based on their lack of activity, the feeling that they can’t contribute to society and the lack of fate in their own abilities and qualities. The innovative system, which will be adapted to the Bulgarian specifics, will address these problems and three workshops will be organized for this purpose. They will be combined with discussions on the encouragement of the entrepreneurial spirit among the target group and the acquirement of practical skills and knowledge about starting up private business or developing ideas.


SubActivity3: Music therapy

Music has been shown to help when dealing with emotional problems and most members of the target group have to deal with such issues. The innovative approach uses music, combined with the proactive role of youths with criminogenic behavior, by organizing musical sessions and sessions with a professional.  Music therapy has a therapeutic and inclusive effect and it is often used in psychology. Through creative activity the young people at risk become more adaptable, communicative and more willing to participate actively in labor and employment.


SubActivity4: Animal-assisted therapy

It aims to improve the well-being, quality of life and social interaction of members. Young people will take care of a group of animals for four months. For example, they will have the opportunity to volunteer at the Animal shelter. Taking care, being responsible and connecting with the animals will encourage their expression, communication, activity and will improve their mood and mental stimulation. It is one way to prevent aggression, stress and anxiety which improves health and leads to professional realization. It increases social support and boost the self-esteem of young people at risk and decreases feelings of isolation.


SubActivity5: Workshop, seminar and brainstorming for applying the innovative approach and the new system for Bulgaria.

Informal meetings among the target group will improve their skills and knowledge. They will help them participate effectively in the labor market and society. The activity encourages the empowerment of young people through their participation in a workshop, seminar and brainstorming.