Call for proposals: Small projects
Project duration: 1 Feb 2022–31 Jan 2023
Project budget: 19,883.72 EUR
Young people have little interest in politics and participation in the political process. They lack political knowledge and do not trust democratic processes and political actors in society. They feel a sense of powerlessness because they think that politicians are not interested in their wishes and views. They conclude that they have no influence in the political system and therefore distance themselves from it. But this does not mean that they are not interested in political participation. Young people are very willing to work in civil society organizations. We can conclude that the absence of young people's participation in the political process is a result of a lack of political space and specific mechanisms young people could trust and see as an opportunity to pursue their interests.
In order to solve this problem, our project will promote active citizenship among young people by developing a participatory budgeting model for primary and secondary schools. The main purpose of the project will be to open a political space within the school system, which will allow young people to learn about participatory democracy and actively try it out for the first time. The model will be based on the equal involvement of all young people in co-decision-making processes. Through critical literacy workshops, we will examine the difference between representative and participatory democracy, introducing the students to the concepts of political participation and active citizenship.
The main activities of the project will be preparing the ground for the development of the school participatory budgeting model that any school will be able to use; conducting trainings for students and teachers on direct democracy and participatory budgeting; an adaptation of the ICT tool for the implementation of the process itself and a pilot implementation of the entire participatory budgeting process at III. Gymnasium Maribor. Additionally, the project will encourage and support headmasters and schools in introducing participatory budgeting in Slovenian schools.
The project will introduce a participatory budgeting mechanism into the Slovenian school system for the first time. Abroad, such mechanisms have already been proven to promote active citizenship, strengthen democracy, and increase transparency and better governance.