Call for participants – “Training of trainers – non-formal learning and interactive methods in Youth work”


TOT process duration – from December 2015 until summer of 2016

Online learning – December 2015 – February 2016
Residential training – 19 – 27 March 2016 in Bulgaria
Follow up (online learning, mentorship practice) March 2016 – September 2016

All expenses for participation in the training course (online learning, residential phase – transport, accommodation, food, follow up materials etc.) are covered by project budget on 100%. Participation in the training is FREE.

The Training of Trainers (TOT) is a long-term learning process which is part of the project “Non-formal learning for employability” – 2014-1-BG01-KA205-001743, funded by the European Erasmus + Programme under Key action 2. The project is coordinated by NC Future Now (Bulgaria), in partnership with Dreams for Life (Romania).

Application deadline – 15.12.2015

Apply now – fill in the application form

Follow this link to apply

Project overview

Non-formal learning for employability” project directly addresses one of the main objectives of the Erasmus + program: to provide an effective link between non-formal learning ( in the field of youth work ) and formal education in order to improve the competitiveness of young people in the labor market and combat increasing levels of youth unemployment in Europe.

The general framework of the project is based on the following steps:

  • Analysis of areas where formal education doesn’t provide practical skills but young people need such skills for employability or social sufficiency.
  • Development of methodologies, manuals and training programs based on non-formal learning to provide relevant competences for the areas identified in the previous step.
  • Preparation of expert trainers to train and support youth workers in their direct work with young people – (Training of Trainers)
  • Preparing youth workers to provide training programs for young people interested in the field – (Training of youth workers)
  • Providing support processes at each level by methodologies, manuals and guidelines concerning non-formal learning, modern pedagogy and interactive teaching.

TOT overview

The Training of Trainers (TOT at step 3) aims at preparing 20 experts from the youth field who will become practitioners of non-formal learning methods and interactive learning techniques, in order to train and empower youth workers. The experts will train youth workers (TOYW at step 4) which will later provide learning opportunities for young people to contribute to their realization on the labor market and social cohesion.


What skills, attitudes, actions and experience are developed during the TOT process?

Through the TOT process we aim at:

  • Improving the knowledge and skills of trainers in the field of working with groups;
  • Increasing the ability to set and achieve educational goals;
  • Developing competences for understanding and facilitating individual and group learning processes;
  • Developing skills to design training programs based on the principles of the non-formal learning;
  • Developing skills for managing the process of self-directed learning;
  • Developing skills for successful interaction and teamwork;
  • Developing skills for effective communication in learning environment;
  • Developing skills of using non-formal learning and interactive teaching methods as tools for training.

TOT outcomes

What knowledge, skills and attitudes are essential to be transferred and exercised in the learning process?

The participants will gain the following competences:


  • Theories of the learning process
  • Principles of non-formal learning
  • Learning styles
  • Experiential learning
  • Socio- cognitive learning
  • Motivation and self- efficacy
  • Multiple intelligences
  • Methods for reflection and debriefing
  • Learning environment
  • Assessment of learning outcomes
  • Skills for self-directed learning
  • Key Competences
  • Roles of the trainer
  • Group processes
  • Methods and techniques of the non-formal learning


  • Setting learning goals
  • Assessment of learning outcomes
  • Design of training programs
  • Active listening
  • Effective communication
  • Effective teamwork
  • Creating effective learning flow
  • Mentoring and Coaching
  • Implementation of interactive teaching methods
  • Description and documenting of training programs
  • Facilitating and conducting of discussions and debriefing
  • Giving instructions
  • Giving and receiving effective feedback
  • Creating an environment for reflection and self-evaluation
  • Assessment of training needs
  • Creating and adapting activities and implementing them in different context


  • To serve as a role model
  • To inspire future achievements
  • To communicate positively and encourage learners
  • To follow timetable
  • To handle emergencies
  • To resist stress
  • To radiate dedication
  • To seek opportunities for personal development proactively
  • To encourage participation and involvement of learners
  • To show responsibility at work
  • To improvise and be flexible in training delivery
  • To show openness towards innovation and creativity
  • To empathise and understand the individual needs of learners

Identifying the Target group

For which target groups is the training process suitable?

This training process is dedicated to trainers and education professionals working in the field of non-formal learning and youth work in Bulgaria and Romania. The program is for people using interactive teaching methods for the development of competences involved in the process of personal development and training.

The program is addressed to: youth workers, educators, trainers and consultants.

What specific criteria the participants should accomplish?

Necessary prior experience of the participants:

  • To know the principles of non-formal learning;
  • To have participated at least twice in teams of preparation, implementation and evaluation of trainings based on the methods of non-formal learning;
  • To have experience in the youth field and youth work as – organizers of youth projects and initiatives, youth leaders, mentors, coordinators, trainers;
  • To have the potential and desire to develop skills of trainers and after completion of the training to work actively as trainers in the youth field, conducting training for youth workers;
  • To show initiative and willingness to deliberately run a process of self-improvement and learning;
  • To be prepared to critically reflect on their skills, values and qualities as trainers.

Before enrolling in the training process, the candidates must pass the application process and evaluation to verify the above mentioned requirements. Applicants are asked to describe themselves according to above mentioned criteria, to self-evaluate their experience and competencies and to express their motivation to participate in this educational process.

Stages of the program

The process of training of trainers is complex and demanding venture. The trainer is the person responsible for the participants and for the consequences of his/her work. For this reason, we believe that the process of training and assessment of trainers in the youth field should follow a complex pattern. The process covers 3 months preparatory period, 9 days residential training and a minimum of 6 months of follow-up.

After being selected by applications, all future candidates will be evaluated by “Entry level test” related to topics and competences included in the learning goals. After this, during the preparation phase, the candidates will be provided with theoretical information (books, videos, publications) that will give them opportunities gain new knowledge and insights about the TOT goals. Through this process a sequence of practical tasks will facilitate the learning process. . The progress and performance of the participants will be monitored and evaluated throughout the phase and based on the results performed through the tasks the final selection of participants will be completed. All candidates will be tested again with the same “Entry level test” which will define the level of development during selection/ preparation phase.

> Preparation (before the residential phase of the training of trainers)

during the preparation online-based learning tools (ICT) are used. This will provide background information to the learners, creating contact between participants and trainers and starting the process of personal preparation.

Key elements of preparation phase are:

  • Forming the initial group of participants.
  • Sending a questionnaire to assess the entry level of each participant;
  • Provision of training materials – video, audio, books, publications;
  • Passing through a series of practical tasks to assess progress;
  • Final selection of participants.

> Implementation (during the residential phase of the training of trainers)

the process of residential training starts with Assessment center (based on ETS trainers competencies) to assess trainers skills and behaviors and identifies starting level of each participant. During the training a wide range of tools that accompany the learning process are used. First of all, residential training gives possibility for elaboration of theoretical knowledge developed during preparation phase. Second, it is the moment to deliver and develop specific sets of practical skills related to trainers work (e.g. facilitation of debriefing, giving feedback, communication skills etc.). The process is based on logical flow of competency development – attitude, knowledge and skills. It starts with creating needed attitudes towards youth work and NFL, accompanied by ethics of the trainer and perception of self-development. After this, knowledge about methods, practices and processes are elaborated. Finally, practical tasks are given to be performed in the social environment (in teams) and after that analyzed and refined. In order to become competent professional trainers, the learners develop real educational programs – based on target groups needs and learning objectives.

Key elements of residential training are:

  • Assessment center – to identify trainers skills and behaviors;
  • Social learning – related to values and principles of youth work and training delivery;
  • Performing practical tasks related to training tools such as facilitation, session design etc.
  • Refining the performed tasks through analysis and feedback;
  • Developing and demonstrating in practice a training session;
  • Design of a whole training process – as a final task to the group to demonstrate what they have learned (identification of needs and target groups, preparation and design, conduct sessions, evaluation of the results and follow-up).
  • Reflecting on experiences through Reflection groups – daily group reflection for evaluation of the learned so far and Self-evaluation with the support of various tools and methods.

> Follow-up (after the residential phase of the training of trainers)

during the period after the training some of the practical tasks are repeating but in real situations in the workplace/community of learners. During this process each participant is supported by one trainer and colleagues.

Key elements of follow-up are:

  • Design and implementation of learning process – the steps described above, but in a real environment;
  • Online learning – additional materials;
  • Webinars – to increase qualifications;
  • Mentoring, coaching and online support – provided by trainers and external experts;
  • Support groups – the learners form groups to keep in touch and participate in solving real cases from trainings.
  • Follow up evaluation activities – reports by the trainers/experts, evaluation of overall achievement, final self-evaluation, assessment centre (optional).

Methods and tools

Conducting the program is based entirely on interactive learning and the principles of NFL. Behind the methods selected for the training are the following principles:

  • Active involvement of the participants – stimulating their initiative;
  • Flexibility of the learning process – to meet their specific training needs;
  • Sharing best practices and experience;
  • Creating practical dimension of the learning process.

The participants in the program are placed in an environment that requires their active involvement and high level of participation and expression. They have to cope with challenges and tasks using limited resources to make decisions and to track the results of their actions. Trainers guide participants to effectively interpret lessons from experiences and turn them into skills and attitudes needed for future work.

The principle of “Learning by doing” helps participants to develop and exercise real skills that will be useful to them in the future.

All activities and working methods contribute to the process of non-formal learning and they are games, debates, simulations, energizers, icebreakers, communication games, get to know each other activities, group discussions, guided practice, coaching sessions, creativity activities, reflection activities, open space and many more. The training is focused on the personal development of the participants. The selected activities and methods will empower the youth workers and trainers and make them more confident, more motivated and more competent. Thus they will contribute to social development, by transferring the experiences and the knowledge to their everyday work.

Besides the Experiential learning principles, which are familiar to many trainers, in this training are included new principles and instruments, such as Socio-cognitive learning, Self-efficacy, Multiple intelligences, Learning styles – concepts that will enrich non-formal education.

The participants should be actively involved in every stage of the training. During the preparation stage the candidates should be active in creating the online learning materials, passing tests and completing tasks. During the residential training course they have to create their sessions and have chance to make workshops and receive feedback. After the residential training the participants become part of the mentoring process, they share information with other participants, participate in online learning process. They are also involved in the next activities in the process – trainings of youth workers, multipliers events etc.

Follow up activities

What are the follow-up activities after the residential training?

Based on theories of learning process every new competence has to be practiced to become sustainable and useful. Social learning and support play major roles in the empowerment process when new skills have to be implemented in practice. To provide these elements, mentorship, coaching and peer network will be applied as tools and they are based on two main principles:

> Ongoing learning process for the learners

through practical tasks to be implemented in real situations and theoretical inputs for deepening knowledge. The tools that will provide this are – online learning, mentoring and coaching from peers and experts, support groups.

> Participation in the next steps in carrying out the process

involving learners in the wide framework of implementation of this model for interventions (from which training of trainers is only one part) for creating a deeper understanding about the role of educator in the youth field. During the project implementation the participants from Training of trainers can be involved in different activities such as – job shadowing during Training of youth workers process (working as junior trainers), conducting on-line learning events for youth workers, mentoring and assessment of learning outcomes of youth workers during their learning process, training design with youth workers for preparation of workshops for young people. All these activities can be supported and guided by peers and experts involved in the implementation.

Application procedure

> Deadline: 15.12.2015

Apply now – fill in the application form

Follow this link to apply

For more details and questions please contact the following persons:

> Ognian Gadoularov, for Bulgaria
+359 (0) 896 756 267

> Bogdan Romanica, for Romania
+40 (0) 745 585415

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