The Royal Commonwealth Society (RCS), in partnership with Clarion Futures, invites applications from Cypriots aged 18-25 in the UK and Cyprus to apply for an exciting youth exchange programme, which is designed to foster connections between young people in the UK and Cyprus. 

About the programme

In the wake of COVID-19, community cohesion and social action seems more important than ever as young people from across the world play an increasingly important role in tackling the challenges our global society faces. Therefore, this year, we would like to engage young people from communities in the UK and Cyprus to develop and carry out quality youth-led social action projects that will benefit our communities and deepen Commonwealth connections across borders.    

The main aim is to promote positive values, share learning on the global issue of COVID-19 on young people, and lead on social action projects that can change the world. The exchange programme will enable a wide variety of young people to come together in the UK and in Cyprus (NB: this has been delayed due to Covid-19 restrictions and a greater emphasis has been placed on online exchange and learning) with a common purpose: building and maintaining connected communities during and post the COVID-19 crisis.

What will the programme involve? 

Activity 1 – Virtual Residential – Participatory training workshops (online – 2 days (early February))

The Royal Commonwealth Society will deliver a programme of training, inspiring young people from the UK and Cyprus to develop and undertake high quality youth-led social action activities in their communities centred on Commonwealth values.

 Workshops will include training on:

  • The Commonwealth, its values and its principles
  • Active Citizenship – Rights and Responsibilities in our Communities and the Commonwealth
  • Social media for social change
  • Social action
  • Public speaking
  • Putting tools into practice – Model Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting

During this virtual residential participants will discuss key concerns and priorities that they would like to address and start to develop their social action plans.

Activity 2 - Social Action Projects (mid-February – April)

Following initial training, participants will work with the Royal Commonwealth Society, its mentors and their own local networks to design and deliver a community-based campaign and social action project which will benefit their community and transform people's lives. The Society will hold monthly check-in/ group training sessions to support participants to develop / roll-out their social action projects. 

Activity 3 - International Exchange (in the UK and Cyprus –TBC)   

Following the roll-out of these social action projects, participants in the programme will convene for a knowledge sharing exchange, to consolidate learnings and create a clear advocacy action plan for the legacy programme supported by the Royal Commonwealth Society.

Please note due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic it is unclear if and when this physical convening will occur in 2021. Partners are monitoring the situation closely and will keep participants updated.  

How can I apply?

Please submit a covering letter and CV to [email protected] by 10AM GMT Monday, 25 January 2021. Your covering note should detail your experience and commitment to promoting positive change / social action in your community and how you feel you could benefit and contribute to the exchange. 

Please note all participants should be:

  • 18-25 years old;
  • A Cypriot national (based in the UK or Cyprus); 
  • Passionate about creating positive change in your community;
  • Have some previous experience of engaging in social action, volunteering or activism;
  • Knowledge of grassroots organisations and social action opportunities in your local area;
  • Knowledge of young people in your community and the issues that affect them;
  • Good communication skills;
  • An active team member who will commit to attending all meetings and virtual training/exchange activities, as well as participate in the programme for a 12-month period.

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