ACORN (2023 - 2024)

ACORN addresses the development challenges of Europe's rural areas and focuses on youth policies and the development of 21st-century skills. With a two-year project, we want to attract, empower and inspire rural youth to become active citizens, co-creators and implementers of rural development initiatives that will directly affect them and their future.

The ACORN project (ACtivating yOuNg Rural developemeNt) was created as a response to the emigration of young people from rural areas, as a common problem in 4 European rural regions: Roscommon in Ireland, Idrija in Slovenia, Castille Y Leon in Spain and Malta. The partnership involves 6 organisations that want to contribute to the preparation of a rural development program and change the negative trends in the development of these regions.

The aim of the ACORN project is to develop and implement a new set of rural development resources and mechanisms that will involve young people in four European regions. During the project, we will prepare a field survey aimed at analysing the challenges and opportunities of involving young people in the sustainable development of rural communities. A collection of European good practices will also be prepared as part of the research.

The project focuses on training and empowering young people in rural areas and encourages them to actively participate in decision-making processes on the development of rural communities. To this end, we will create an expanded toolkit for training young rural developers and prepare a series of podcasts on the topic of youth engagement. We will include 20 youth organisations with 100 young people in the activities, where they will acquire new leadership competencies and skills for community development among rural youth.

As part of the project, we will organise 4 more youth assemblies (ACORN Rural Youth Assemblies) in the regions in question and prepare a guide for organising similar events.

Project duration: 1 October 2022 – 30 September 2024

Value: €250,000.00

Partners: Roscommon Integrated Development Co. Ltd t/a Roscommon LEADER Partnership (Ireland) (Lead Partner), Zavod Id20, Asociacion Jovenes Solidarios Arenas De San Pedro (Spain), Momentum Marketing Services (Ireland), VisMedNet Association (Malta), European Elearning Institute (Denmark)