Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the project got prolonged till the 31st of December 2020. National piloting of the developed materials will take place during summer and autumn 2020, followed by multiplier events in each of the partner countries that are planned for the October/November of 2020.
Joint staff training event was held in Zagreb 24.-26. February. It included 12 trainers (3 per each country) – youth workers from partner organizations and youth workers that has been selected for implementation of anti-bullying programs identified through needs analysis research. Participants had the opportunity to present and test the shared parts of the training materials among each other. Participants provided feedback on each part of the Innovative tool for countering bullying, mutual shared the experiences in the development of the Tool and provided advice regarding further implementation.
This has made a necessary preparation for national piloting of the training materials that will be implemented by the participants of this joint staff training event.
Final preparations are being made for the Joint-staff training event that will be held in Zagreb next week, where we will teach youth workers from Romania, Latvia, Greece and Croatia how to use the Innovative tool for countering bullying that we developed through this project. We want to thank Hrvatski Telekom for loaning the mobile phones that we needed to be able to present the virtual reality scenarios in the training event, and later during piloting in collaborating schools. We hope that the innovative workshops that we have developed through this project will make young people aware of the harm that peer violence does and encourage them to stop peer violence when they see it in their school environment.
The third meeting of the project team took place in beautiful Liepaja, Latvia last week. At the meeting we had the opportunity to see the developed virtual reality scenes, as well as discuss content developed for training materials and workshop curriculum that will be used to show the young people in Croatia, Greece, Romania and Latvia the devastating effects of bullying. We are slowly but surely entering the final phase of developing an innovative tool for countering bullying. Our tasks in this last phase of the project include translation of materials to all partner languages, education for youth workers that will facilitate workshops, piloting of the developed materials and informing the public at final conferences that will be held in each of our partner countries.
In order to identify regional, national and European successful practices in the field of countering bullying with the greatest emphasis on the programs that use modern technologies, we carried out a complex research in each participating country. Findings reflected in this research constitute a solid basis for the development of content for Innovative tool for countering bullying in the next phase of the project. It helps us to identify how the VR scenarios and workshop curriculum should be designed to induce the greatest interest in youth and to have the greatest educational impact.
Three main methods have been used in the implementation of the research:
Phase 1: Structured interviews with youth workers
In each partner country, we conducted structured interviews with the youth workers and public authorities in the field of countering bullying to find out:
– Opinions and experiences of youth workers in the field of anti-bullying initiatives;
– Opinions and experiences of youth workers in the use educational games and modern technologies for development of psychosocial skills and competencies;
– Tools, methodologies and types of procedures and its effectiveness used by youth workers;
– Needs for transversal skills, competencies and tools development of youth workers in an area of countering bullying.
Phase 2: Youth questionnaire on bullying and modern technology
We created a questionnaire that allowed young people to share their experiences with bullying, anti-bullying initiatives and their effectiveness, as well as their experiences with modern technology.
Phase 3: Desk research
With the desk research we have identified the existing practices and their success rate at different organizations (educational system, NGO-s, social services, etc.) that work in the field of countering bullying and discrimination, with the special emphasis on the practices that use modern technologies. We have identified effective and non-effective characteristics of these tools and potential impediments of using them regularly in youth work, which gave us the basis for the development of content for the Innovative tool for countering bullying.
The information gathered through the structured interviews, youth questionnaires and desk research will be summed up in a Comprehensive study of the best anti-bullying practices which will be widely disseminated to relevant stakeholders by the end of this year.
Images: students filling out an online questionnaire and Greek researcher Foteini Papadatou interviewing youth workers.
Second meeting of project “VR not bullies” partners was taking place from 4th to 5th of March in Zagreb, Croatia. It was hosted be the leading project partner Sirius – Centre for psychological counselling, education and research.
During the intense meeting schedule and active discussions, diverse tasks were completed – Greek researcher Foteini Papadatou presented and partners discussed the development process and results from structured interviews, youth questionnaires and desk research for the Comprehensive Study of Best Anti-Bullying Practices Using Modern Technology. Project leader Eva lead the development of a plan for the technical solutions for the VR tool and workshop schedule, as well as scenarios for the immersive audiovisual materials. Also regular management, administrative and financial issues were discussed during the meeting.
Spectrum Educational Centre representatives presented the evaluation of the first 6 months of the project. Generally, all of the partners are satisfied with the collaboration and progress, and feel the shared responsibility for the further development of the project.
You can follow updates on “VR not bullies” research results and work progress on our new Twitter account, as well as on Facebook.
Anna Priedola, the director of Liepaja University Art Research Lab, MPLab, presenting project aims and planned results at MPLab annual new media art festival “iWeek: Update” Show&Tell event on 13th of September, 2018.
“iWeek: Update” is a platform for skill sharing, networking and creation and exhibition of new media art works in Liepaja, organised by MPLab in collaboration with E-Lab, Electronic art and media center. With the support of Liepaja University, Culture Capital Foundation (VKKF) and RIXC, New Media Art Center.
The meeting took place on 18th and 19th of September, 2018 in Mierurea Ciuc, Romania.
During project kick-off meeting partner organisations planned the project timeline, management, international meetings, joint staff training, multiplier events and final conference.