Coordinator of Youth Guidance Centres (One-Stop-Shops)
Managing multi-competent teams – a new profession with a tailor-made education
Young adults not in education or training and without a job is a vulnerable group in our societies. This group is often referred to as NEETs (Not in Employment, Education or Training). A diverse group, difficult to find, difficult to motivate to take the first step to ask for help and when they are in contact with welfare services the needed measures are complex.
According to Eurostat in 2020 the proportion of young NEETs between the ages of 20 and 34 was 17,6 per cent on average in the EU as a whole, with a variation between 7,2 and 13 per cent in the countries of the Baltic Sea region.
Therefore so-called “Youth Guidance Centres”, providing multiple welfare services gathered under one roof has proved to be a successful model when organizing an effective answer to this societal and individual challenge. This low-threshold service provision has become increasingly common, particularly in the Baltic Sea Region with for example “Ohjaamo” in Finland, “Navigatorcentrum” in Sweden, “Ungevejen” in Denmark and “Jugendberufsagentur” in Germany.
Commonly, the centres gather multiple municipal and national public services responsible for educational guidance, labour market integration, social services, and health. The idea is to make it easier for the user to access available services, while facilitating coordination and cooperation among authorities both on a case by case basis and on a strategic level. As new, cross-sectorial structures they face the complexity related to the needed collaboration between different authorities but also the need to provide individual guidance for users to the services provided by the centres. The key function in these centres are the coordinator charged with responsibility to manage the centre including staff representing different organizational and professional cultures, often with varying mandates and missions. This is a demanding role that needs to be strengthened, as integrated services become a necessary response to complex and increasingly fragmented welfare systems.
In the framework of the flagship School to Work (S2) with its NEETs platform it has been decided to define this new profession as coordinator and develop and test an education on Baltic Sea Region basis. This is done in an Erasmus+ – strategic partnership project. The partnership represents both practitioners and educational providers from Denmark, Finland, Lithuania and Sweden.
There are two main target groups for this education:
- Those already working as Coordinators of Youth Guidance Centres charged with responsibilities to manage the centre and with the strategic responsibility to further develop the centre including funding and engaging stakeholders.
- Those charged with responsibility to initiate and launch Youth Guidance Centres, assumed to hold positions as Head of Unit in municipalities.
Competence profile and curriculum
A competence profile for this new profession as coordinator has been developed and tested with a reference group. Based on this competence profile a curriculum has been elaborated. Important before starting to recruit participants to the pilot education was a dialogue with stakeholders operating Youth Guidance Centres or similar and other stakeholders considering starting these new service centres. This was done in a workshop where some 70 participants gave their feedback on the proposed curriculum.
The education is implemented as a coherent programme with four modules. The first one started in September, the last one will finish in spring 2022. The first two modules are held online. A completed programme will give 15 ECTS and a diploma.
- Active participation
We expect you to meet the other participants, their context and the curriculum with curiosity, openness, exploration, and discussion.
- Sharing and reflecting on experiences and knowledge
We expect you to share experiences, challenges, successes, and knowledge from your own context with the other participants, so that we can learn from each other’s.
- Cross-context and cross-national dialogues
We expect you to have an interest in the diversity and experiences from other contexts, geographically as well as professionally.
Module 1. Building One-Stop Guidance Centre (5 ECTS)
This is an orientating module for all the forthcoming modules. The module offers a general overview to nation specific and common features of One-Stop Guidance Centre (OSGC).
- the concept of OSGC and the needs of the target group
- existing support structures and the services they provide to the target group including legal acts behind the services
- building an accessible guidance centre with targeted services and actions
The concept of OSGC and the needs of the target group
What kind of models are there in partner countries:
- Which national authorities etc. are behind the OSGC model?
- What are the aims of the OSGC model? What are the needs recognized behind the model?
- How is it funded?
- What is the added value of OSGC?
Existing support structures and the services they provide to the target group including legal acts behind the services
- What kind of existing services are available in OSGC?
- Who provides the services?
- What do we need to know about legislation of the different service providers? How does it effect on multidisciplinary co-operation in OSGC?
Building an accessible one-stop guidance centre with targeted services and actions
- Towards an effective multidisciplinary OSGC
- What is already functioning in our model and what should be developed further?
1. Pre-course assignment: Participants are invited to introduce themselves on the digital platform.
2. First workshop on-line, Friday 10 September, 8.30 – 12.30 (CET)
- Introduction of the CTP-project, training programme, participants etc.
- Introduction of the different OSGC models: key elements, coordinators’/managers’ role etc.
- Organizing 5 transnational peer groups
3. Learning activities in international peer groups
- Working in 5 transnational thematic peer groups, including 2 tutoring sessions on-line scheduled with the participants
4. Second workshop on-line, Thursday 30th September, 8.30 – 10.30 (CET)
- Working in national groups: Collecting contributions from each thematic group
5. Learning activities in national groups
- Preparing to discuss our next steps towards an effective multidisciplinary OSGC
6. Third workshop online, Tuesday 12 October, 8.30 – 11.30 (CET)
- Presenting our next steps towards an effective multidisciplinary OSGC
- Concluding the module 1
- Preparing for the next module (pre-course assignment for module 2)
Module 2. Delivering the services in a client-centred way (3 ECTS)
The aim of the module is to support participants to deliver the services in a client-centered way to enhance client’s agency and integrity.
- supporting the team to deliver the client-centred services
- the ethical aspects when working with the clients
- present labour market information (LMI) and future trends of the world of work and careers
- raising awareness of guidance centres among clients and developing and coordinating marketing
1. Pre-course assignment
2. First contact session online: Thursday 11 November, 8.30 – 12.30 (CET)
3. Learning activities: individually and/or in international peer groups
- working on-line
- working in two tutoring sessions, 1,5 hours/session (5 participants in each group)
4. Second contact session online: Friday 26 November, 8.30 – 10.30 (CET)
5. Learning activities: individually and/or in international peer groups
6. Third contact session online: Monday 13 December, 8.30 – 11.30 (CET):
conclusion and preparing for the next module (pre-course assignment)
Module 3. Managing, coordinating, and developing multidisciplinary
services and team (4 ECTS)
The module concentrates on multidisciplinary services and multi-professional work in OSGC. Especially the focus is on the role of the coordinator.
- managing and supporting multi-disciplinary services, teams and multi-disciplinary collaboration
- planning, supporting and carrying out multi-stakeholder dialogues; internally with staff and partners, externally with young people, decision-makers and civil society
- indicators set for the services and actions and how to operationalise, monitor, document and evaluate them and their meaning
Module 4. Creating and developing sustainable networks (3 ECTS)
The module discusses the position of OSCG in relation to other service providers. The aim is also to strengthen coordinator’s understanding of the significance of the background organisations in OSGC operations.
- building effective partnerships (competence, relevance) with the help of local, regional and national support structures
- raising awareness and communicate the added-value of guidance centres among background organisations and partner organisations
- strengthening background organisations’ commitment to develop and fund services and actions of guidance centres