Implemented from March 2015 to February 2017, ECFOLI is an innovative Media education and Information Literacy (MIL) project aiming at fostering sustainable conflict resolution strategies through the study and ownership of the common Mediterranean culture, in particular local cultural heritage. The project overall involves 5 different countries: Portugal, Palestine, Cyprus, Morocco and France, with Youth aged around 16 years participating from March 2016, residing from Lisbon, Portugal; Casablanca, Morocco; Nabulus and Ramallah in Palestine; and Nicosia, Famagusta and Paphos in Cyprus.
Funded by the European Union under the Erasmus+ programme for Strategic Partnerships and Youth, the ECFOLI project helped motivated young people to be active within their community, by not focusing on the conflicts they faced. On the contrary the aim was to help them see the positive of their communities, starting with their cultural heritage that in some places was set in a conflict of sorts. The expected outcome was that the youth involved would come out of the experience feeling more comfortable of their communities, pride in their cultural heritage and open about their thoughts. They have gained skills to not just be on the receiving end of media, but also to be ECFOLI Ambassadors who can express their own opinions in positive and proactive ways, especially via their own Media creations.
Participants have had the opportunity to interact online and offline via travel experiences to Lisbon and Paris, creating lasting friendships and true dialogue between communities, which in turn has promoted inter-cultural dialogue and respect for human rights. Giving tools to the participating Youth to be active citizens in support of their local environment and society at large, ECFOLI has helped achieve these objectives through the creation of Media products by the Youth, and an e-learning platform embedded in a MOOC, all combined with the blended and experiential learning of participants, both trainers and youth. The ECFOLI MOOC – Massive Online Open Course, run by the ECFOLI Youth for Youth, is now available for all to participate from February 2017.