A new €2.5 million fund will address the significant impact of Covid-19 on the delivery of education and training in Ireland and on the cultural and creative sectors.
Funded by the European Commission, and managed in Ireland by Léargas, the two new Erasmus+ Strategic Partnerships will support the recovery process from the Covid-19 pandemic, build digital and creative readiness, and ease the impact of the crisis on some of the hardest-hit sectors.
Lorraine Gilligan, Executive Director at Léargas, welcomed the new €2.5 million fund to foster creativity, culture, and multiculturalism. She explained that much of Léargas’s 2020 programme of education, training, youth, and volunteering projects, had to be postponed or adapted to run virtually.
“In a way, 2020 has been the antithesis to what Léargas promotes – we create opportunities for people to cross borders and come together, the very thing we’re all being asked not to do, in line with public health measures.,” Ms Gilligan said.
“We have faced new challenges but our team, and the incredible organisations we work with across Ireland, have found creative and innovative ways to adapt and to share their learning with others here and across Europe.
“While the physical element of travel and exchange may not be as accessible as it once was, with the support of this new EU fund, Irish organisations that provide educational, artistic, or creative initiatives can continue to bring us all closer together.
“We know that challenges, such as those presented by this crisis, hit some communities harder than others – for those experiencing digital poverty or who lack the tools or skills to join the virtual world where so much is happening this year, this fund will provide a lifeline. Arts and education organisations will be able to support learners and teachers to continue connecting, creating, and collaborating at a time when we need that engagement and exchange most.”
The Strategic Partnership for Digital Education Readiness will make funding available to schools and vocational education organisations to support learners, teachers and trainers adapt to online or distance learning through digital tools and methods. There will also be a focus on promoting safer and more responsible use of digital technology in a new virtual learning environment.
The Strategic Partnership for Creativity will support adult and school education or youth organisations to equip young people and adults to develop creative and innovative solutions to unprecedented risks and societal issues. Organisations will be supported to promote active citizenship through the arts and to reinforce virtual networks and collaboration models that support intercultural exchange and engagement.
Léargas has announced online workshops and webinars to support organisations to develop their project ideas for the Strategic Partnerships in Digital Education Readiness and Creativity.
“As with all our programmes, our team is here to support organisations from across the school, vocational and adult education sectors and youth groups to make the most of the opportunities available,” Ms Gilligan said.
Applications are welcome from schools, youth organisations, further education organisations, and adult education groups.
The deadline for applications is 11am Irish time on Thursday 29 October 2020.
For more information go to Erasmus+ Strategic Partnerships.
SOURCE: Materials provided by Leargas
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