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Iż-Żmien Kurjuż Taż-Żghożija – an innovative approach to developing youth work

Iż-Żmien Kurjuż Taż-Żghożija is a publication by Agenzija Zghazagh in collaboration with Ħela, as part of a project called A.S.K.(ing) You(th) Developing Competencies for Creative Youth Work Practice. This three-tier project’s overarching objective is to identify the right set of competencies – Attitudes, Skills, and Knowledge (A.S.K.) – that youth workers need to provide innovative, creative, and high-quality youth work services that facilitate a smooth transition to adulthood. The project took an innovative approach by collaborating with the creative sector as youth researchers and youth workers join forces with creatives to identify competencies essential for effective youth work.

Back home each writer wrote a story exploring youthhood from different perspectives. As part of the project’s Agenzija Zghazagh decided to publish the 10 Maltese stories in a book titled ‘Iż-Żmien Kurjuż Taż-Żghożija.’ The Italian stories were published in a volume called Il Tempo della Giovanezza while the Slovenian volume is called Nenavaden čas Mladosti.

The Maltese anthology, featuring contributions from five seasoned writers – Clare Azzopardi, Glen Calleja (who also edited all the stories), Leanne Ellul, Ġorġ Mallia and Adrian Grima – and five emerging talents – Matteo Pullicino, Klara Vassallo, Kirsty Azzopardi Nathan Anthony Pace and Maxine Tanti, explores youth from ten different dimensions. The publication showcases the diversity of youth experiences focusing on both the challenges and opportunities in this period of life.

Following the creative writing phase, a group of youth researchers and youth workers from the three participating countries analysed the 30 stories as part of the 2nd phase of the project. The goal was to develop a document that portrays a common understanding of youth, considering both intergenerational and intercultural dimensions. This document will serve as a foundation for identifying the competencies needed by youth workers to provide quality services through the development of a training course for youth workers, the third and final output of the project.

The project kicked off with a creative writing workshop in Ljubljana, where 30 writers from Slovenia, Italy and Malta engaged in a creative process to start depicting their understanding of youth and societal issues faced by young people. The group comprised both young and seasoned writers, providing diverse perspectives on youthhood. Young writers share their current experiences, while seasoned writers reflect on their past, creating a rich tapestry of narratives.

Image of Cover of books and games of Iz-Zmien Kurjuz taz-zghozija
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