Media and Information Literacy (MIL) is a crucial component of the EU Youth Programs, particularly Erasmus+ and the European Solidarity Corps. These programs aim to develop MIL competencies among young people and empower them through youth engagement. This article will explore the significance of MIL in EU Youth Programs and its connection to youth participation.
The Importance of MIL in EU Youth Programmes
One-third of Erasmus+ Key Actions projects focus on MIL, and the top priority for these projects is developing digital youth work. There are major gaps in MIL competencies in the areas of digital safety, ICT, and media literacy, and tackling information.
To sum up some statistics about the connection between Media and Information Literacy and EU Youth Programmes:
- 50% of Youth Participation projects focus on Media and Information Literacy (MIL), and vice versa, as critical thinking is a common transversal competence.
- MIL is crucial for effective youth participation, particularly for disadvantaged groups, and necessary for e-participation.
- Many projects aim to promote MIL and social inclusion.
- Creative expression through art and media can also empower socially excluded youth and address human rights issues like hate speech.
MIL & SALTO PI
To advance MIL in the long term, better guidelines and project ideas from MIL experts and niche organisations are needed. The MIL Study Visit 2022 aims to introduce media landscape thematic area projects, develop the MIL focus of ESC Volunteering and Solidarity projects, integrate digital safety, ICT, and media literacy into KA2 projects, and promote cooperation and peace building to tackle youth radicalization.
MIL & Youth Work
When defining the quality of a project, the specific needs of different age groups are considered to be the most important factor. Young people should participate in cross-border projects as much as possible to facilitate their learning and use of critical thinking. Specialist organisations should lead MIL projects within the EU Youth Programs: especially in the areas of digital safety, ICT, and media literacy.
Finally, Media and Information Literacy is an important component of EU Youth Programs and is closely linked to youth involvement. These programmes promote the creative use of new methods of expression and critical thinking in order to provide young people with the required abilities to navigate the digital world.