YOUCA cannot be stopped online

Committed young people do not let the virus grind them down. Koerian Verbesselt explains how YOUCA continued to connect young people from all corners of the world.

Committed young people do not let the virus grind them down. That is the least you can say about the group of enthusiasts at youth organisation YOUCA. Despite the measures and restrictions, they continued to ensure the operation of their organisation as best they could. Although projects must be elaborated differently this year, they succeeded in connecting young people from all corners of the world. YOUCA online could not be stopped!

Digital action

However, the youngsters did not throw in the towel and set to work with their South-American peers online. Project committees, general meetings and follow-up, they did it all from a distance. "This has an impact on our operation, but also on the young people," says Koerian Verbesselt of YOUCA. "Many of them were looking forward to meeting each other in reality after all the efforts they made. Fortunately, we are a close-knit group and we can count on each other."

"Most of our activities this year went digital, but that doesn't mean it wasn't fun."

"Youth movement can also be taken literally. Our exchange projects were mainly digital, but with this workshop we brought some Brazil to Belgium."


From summer activities to Christmas celebrations

"When the measures relaxed during the summer, our members immediately grabbed the chance to see each other and to participate in our adapted activities. In the framework of our annual 'Shrinking Space' theme, we went on an immersion trip in our own country. We demanded the necessary attention for this in Brussels and Louvain and started a dialogue with other organisations. We organised a YOUCAmp, learned the Capoeira and became acquainted with Molenbeek. We also dug out our mobile YOUCAravan to campaign.
In order not to lose the connection, the young YOUCA crew took many more initiatives. We exchanged talents during skill swaps and labs, there was a sing-from-your-window day, new youngsters were introduced to the organisation during online VIP days and we read to children of fourth-world organisation People for People. And the icing on the cake was the online Christmas party.


Tinder walks

Now that young people are restricted to their bubble, the organisation took the initiative to start using an app it customised with a playful tinder layout. It links walking buddies with each other. "In this way, everyone can see each other safely in real life and dispel loneliness," says Koerian. "Anyway, we are looking forward to finally picking up our lives like before and to realising our operation in full again!"  


“Fortunately, we are a close-knit group and we can count on each other."

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