Kreit Offenbach | Germany
Catching up for children and young people after Corona
During the COVID-19 pandemic, children and young people have not only missed a great deal of teaching time at school and have not been able to cover the material set out in the curriculum. They are also missing many other things in their everyday life: contacts with their peers, sport and exercise, playing and talking as part of a group, cultural events and travelling with the family. In this regard, the Hessian Ministry for Social Affairs and Integration has implemented the “Catching up after Corona” action program. The lack of social interaction with peers, excessive media consumption and lack of exercise among others during the pandemic posed and still pose a risk to the healthy development of young people, as they can trigger mental and physical stress.
The aim of the programme is to support young people in coping with the stress caused by the corona pandemic and the considerable restrictions in everyday life. This is meant to reduce possible negative effects on the development of social and cognitive skills. The Federal Government provided support for children and young people so that they can engage in leisure activities offered during the school holidays in particular, and make good some of what they have missed during the restriction imposed due to COVID-19.
The programme is targeted at children and young people, who various reports have revealed have been severely affected by the effects of COVID-19 and its consequences. By June 2022, 49 projects for children and young people in the Offenbach district had already been supported and financed as part of the action programme. For example, the outreach youth work project with a “mobile youth centre – table football bike” in Rödermark, the “Einhardrock- Rock und Pop- event with young music bands” in Seligenstadt as well as a large number of creative workshops, some youth camps as well as sports, exercise among others in the Offenbach district.
Main activities carried-out
This activity was carried out during the Easter holidays 2022 in Dietzenbach and its environs. Due to the restrictions of the corona pandemic, the young people hardly had the opportunity to stay outside of Dietzenbach and do joint activities with each other and other young people. A trip to the climbing park in Offenbach was offered was therefore organized to strengthen the community and the group feeling among the young people to mitigate against the effects of the restriction imposed by Corona.
On July 2nd, 2022, as part of the “Excursion to Europapark” project, organized by the Dietzenbach eV support and culture association, 28 people, including 2 honorary staff as supervisors, drove from Dietzenbach to Europapark Rust. This provided the young people the opportunity to socially interact.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the skate and bike park under the Hengstbach Viaduct has been even more popular with children and young people in Dreieich and the region. The activities in the halls were however not possible at all or only possible under certain conditions due to darkness or weather. Depending on the time of year, it gets dark very early, so that the children and young people who enthusiastically ride scooters, skateboards or bicycles cannot pursue their hobbies on the skate park for long. Support was received to purchase of sports equipment from the action program “Catching up for children and young people after Corona”, enabling other Micro-projects such as midnight sports and bicycle workshops to be carried out as part of “Youth Strengthening in the Quarter” (JustiQ). This has helped to promote social contacts among young people.
The city of Neu-Isenburg receives funding for five project ideas for children and young people who have suffered particularly badly from the pandemic and its consequences. In October 2021, the city of Neu-Isenburg designed several project proposals for the action program “Catching up for children and young people after Corona” for Neu-Isenburg and submitted the applications for funding to the district of Offenbach. With the additional funds, the city wants to strengthen extracurricular youth work and the offers of child and youth welfare in Neu-Isenburg, as well as cheap vacation and weekend free time, or youth encounters, in addition to the very well positioned existing offers of the city. Easily accessible leisure activities that promote more exercise and encounters should be organized for young people in particular. A total of 21,812 euros in funding has been approved for five project ideas by the city of Neu-Isenburg for 2021/2022.
As part of the “Catching up after Corona” action program, the city of Neu-Isenburg organized and carried out an educational trip to Berlin for girls from Neu-Isenburg during the Easter holidays. The young girls visited a wide variety of sights in the capital and deal with National Socialism and the Second World War by learning more about German history by visiting the original locations. This offer to seek to provide young girls from Neu-Isenburg who, due to their financial and cultural situation, and because of the restrictions from Corona, are usually unable to take part in such events. Visit to the Wannabe children’s circus
Is a permanent fixture in Neu-Isenburg. There are horses, pigs, goats, rabbits, llamas and dogs in the children’s circus. When caring for these animals, the children learn to take responsibility and enjoy the leisure time with the animals. There is also the opportunity to juggle, ride a unicycle and do acrobatics, all of which promote youth social interaction and help the young people to catch-up with what theymissed during the pandemic. In all, 260 students participated in this activity in Neu-Isenburg.
Dates and timelines
The key collaborators of the programme at the District level are made-up of the local authorities, NGOs, youth groups, other state agencies among others within the District. They include the following:
- The Offenbach district
- Dialogue Museum
- Dietzenbach eV support and culture association
- The municipal councils of the 13 communes
- The Kinder- und Jugendförderung (KiJuFö) Dreieich
- The youth cafe, Neu-Isenburg
- The Wannabe eV children’s and youth circus in Neu-Isenburg
- The EINHARDROCK
The German Federal Government is responsible for this best practice at the national and state levels. The Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (BMFSFJ), the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community (BMI). The German Federal funded the programme with a two billion euro action programme.
At the local or District level, the Offenbach district oversees the implementation of the best practice at the district level. The Offenbach district is part of the Frankfurt RheinMain metropolitan region, which has positioned itself well in global competition. The geographic location in the center of Germany offers numerous perspectives for growth and prosperity. A large number of attractive location factors, such as a well-developed and closely interlinked infrastructure, the large proportion of green spaces and forests, the proximity to Frankfurt Airport and the internationality guarantee quality of life and the ability to innovate. The assets also include well-maintained historic old town centers and architecturally appealing new housing estates in the centers and outskirts of the 13 towns and communities belonging to the district. A close-knit network of social and other services ensures the best possible care for the citizens. The youth and family specialist service, youth development and early childhood support department of the District of Offenbach, coordinates the program and the use of funds for the local youth welfare organizations and decides on the measures to be funded as part of its overall and planning responsibility.
To meet the challenges and respond to the needs of children and young people, the Federal Government launched the programme that is meant to help young people make good what they have missed during the pandemic. A sum of two billion euros has been earmarked for the programme for the period 2021/2022. As part of the Federal Government’s “Catching up after Corona action program for children and young people” and on the basis of the agreement between the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth and the federal states, funds were available in Hesse and thus also in the Offenbach district for support and promotion available to young people.
Preliminary research conducted by the Research Center Demographic Change (FZDW) of the Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences (Frankfurt UAS) involving around 1450 revealed that, students and young people for that matter are recovering from the pandemic. Around 1,450 students took part in the first survey at the end of 2021, whereas only around 270 students took part in the final second survey in August 2022. The research indicated that, overall, young people are gradually recovering from the stresses they have suffered. This is attributable to the various intervention that were put in place to mitigate against the effects of the pandemic on the mental health of young people in Germany as a whole.
Volunteerism in Athienou is one of the biggest and most effective activity that helps strengthen the social ties and creates a healthy and highly functioning society. Individuals of all ages are excited to participate and offer their time and resources towards their fellow in need. The spirit of volunteerism exists in most families and it is passed from generation to generation contributing to the healthy evolution of the society ...
The student population in Amsterdam benefited since there is a better c0nnection with, in particular, student organizations and students with the City of Amsterdam and local health authorities. The role has created new events such as Healthy Talks and the Mental Health Café which are targeting students mental wellbeing. Thanks to Thrive, several connections were quickly made with other relevant initiatives in the city ...
Recognising that early detection and seeking care are key for better wellness and resilience outcomes, specific training targeting teachers, administrative staff, youth workers as well as other non-health related professionals serving youth would allow them to better identify mental health problems and distress, provide basic support and referral to professional mental health services. In addition, good mental health literacy ...
The implemented measures have provided significant support to the inhabitants of Ķekava municipality, including young people, in order to promote a healthy lifestyle and reduce the negative impact on mental health caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The participants of the activities very much appreciated the opportunities offered. “When starting remote activities, we ourselves were faced with ignorance, we had doubts about responsiveness ...
In 2021, based on the application, the city of Šibenik became the first of 9 cities in Croatia to be awarded the 'City for Youth' certificate. In order to obtain certificate City of Sibenik had to adopt ‘The European Charter on Local Youth Work’ and check 72 indicators in different fields connected to youth (some of them are: public spaces, promotion of mobility, health, free time, education). In the same year City of Sibenik had applied for participation in project ...
"Aria - Spazi Reali" is a project of the City of Turin realised in co-design with organisations working on the city's territory for young people. The project was set up about 30 years ago as a psychological counselling desk for young people (14-21 years old), but over the years it has expanded and diversified its offers and proposals to meet the needs of young people, in parallel with the evolution of their interests ...
The programme is targeted at children and young people, who various reports have revealed have been severely affected by the effects of COVID-19 and its consequences. By June 2022, 49 projects for children and young people in the Offenbach district had already been supported and financed as part of the action programme. For example, the outreach youth work project with a "mobile youth centre - table football bike ...
The recreational area on the banks of the river Suceava - the newest investment completed in the fall of 2021 by the municipality of Suceava, financed by European funds, represented a major importance for the community, especially for the leisure activities that can be organized for youngsters. To take it forward, Suceava Municipality initiated steps for the development of two forest-parks in ...