Building Learning Societies

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The fundamental values of solidarity, equality, participation and social justice are the cornerstones of the process of building inclusive learning societies, where people are given opportunities to develop and to cooperate as free and equal individuals. SOLIDAR works towards creating an inclusive learning society on the grounds of openness and democracy, where all members have an opportunity to participate in lifelong and life-wide learning opportunities. This enables personal emancipation; enhances an individual’s full civic, social and economic participation in society and the development of human talents – to ensure that everyone achieves the maximum according to his or her abilities.

SOLIDAR members have a long-standing tradition of empowering people through lifelong learning, and actively promote social cohesion, active inclusion and participation in society. The network brings together workers’ education associations, trade union education institutes and popular education movements. Our members work to prioritise non-formal and informal (adult) learning as a tool to empower people to fully participate in society, in particular socio-economically vulnerable groups such as young people, migrants, people in precarious working conditions and the working poor.

The following areas will particularly increase in importance in the coming period:

  • Building inclusive learning societies: to strengthen non-formal and informal learning (NFIL) to promote active citizenship, democracy, intercultural learning and to combat all forms of discrimination, including racism and xenophobia, and to develop a strategy which actively supports the creation of learning societies and learning workplaces.
  • Recognising the added value of non-formal and informal learning to the development of the skills needed to bridge the gap between labour market needs and available qualifications and of formal education and vocational training by establishing learning pathways to enable the transition between educational systems.
  • Promoting validation of skills, competences and knowledge acquired through non-formal and informal learning within society and in the workplace.
  • Making lifelong learning a reality and fostering participation of people in education and learning, especially those who are far from formal education and have a weak income position for example young adults who are not in education, employment or training (NEETs) and school dropouts, as well as highly educated unemployed people whose skills are at risk of deterioration.
  • Promoting vocational education and training. Together with our members and partners we will work towards greater recognition of vocational training in the world of work. 
  • Promoting methodological innovation: providing a space for members to exchange educational and training tools and practices, and promoting methodological and technological cooperation and innovation for better education.
  • Investing in education for social justice. Promoting the international dimension of non-formal and informal learning and strengthening development cooperation instruments to strengthen the transformative learning aspects embedded in adult education, popular education and workers’ education.

As stated in SOLIDAR's New Strategic Orientation, published in June 2015.

Our focus

All ongoing work