The IncludeMe project presents new tools to facilitate training of mediators

The project team has developed a Good Practice Guide, a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) and an innovative training course, all free to use.

A mediator is a person who has been trained to provide support on issues such as immigration law, family reunification, government services and labor market integration. There are mediators, for example, in educational organizations and the municipal sector, but also in the voluntary sector; and they have proven to be a successful way of working with new arrivals.

Intercultural mediation can be seen as a key strategy for social inclusion and cohesion. It increases mutual understanding between parties with different cultural backgrounds and beliefs and, therefore, supports conflict prevention. Likewise, mediation contributes to knowledge of rights and access to community services.

The aim of the European project “IncludeMe: Inclusion through mediation”, of which the Solidarity Foundation of the University of Barcelona is a partner, has been to strengthen and train skills related to mediation, communication, conflict management and conflict resolution. A guiding principle of the project has been the objectives set by the European Union in the Europe 2020 strategy, which states that a higher level of social inclusion is more important than ever to combat tensions in society.

To this end, the project team has developed:

A Good Practice Guide

It provides examples of how mediation can serve as a tool for conflict resolution in social conflicts and highlights how to promote the social inclusion of migrants and refugees. It further introduces and identifies both formal and non-formal mediation activities as a tool for mutual knowledge, social cohesion and peaceful approaches to conflict resolution.

A Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)

It consists of five modules covering 24 areas, all of which are made up of short learning sections, exercises and learning links that provide a deeper understanding of what mediation is all about: being a present, fair and trustworthy person who helps in situations where difficulties may arise, for example due to bureaucracy, cultural differences or language.

An Innovative Training Course

Divided into five modules, it encourages teachers and adult/community educators to integrate intercultural mediation training into their organization’s activities and the training currently offered. The assignments are designed for classroom interaction and include case studies and ready-made discussion topics. The resources in the course are aimed at teachers in higher education, particularly those working in in-service training departments and outreach roles, but are also suitable for volunteers and for anyone who wants to learn more about non-formal mediation. The course is also relevant for higher education managers and stakeholders in migrant education.

The IncludeMe project is co-funded by the Erasmus+ program of the European Union. It is led by Åbo Akademi University (Finland) and its partners are: European Universities Continuing Education Network (Belgium), European E-learning Institute (Denmark), Momentum educate + innovate (Ireland), Tuzla Kaymakamlığı (Turkey) and Fundació Solidaritat UB (Spain).

This news is related to the following SDG of 2030 Agenda: