EU Policy Framework on Lifelong Learning
SOLIDAR works to empower trade unionists, local activists and grassroot organistions through lifelong learning (education & training) in order to promote decent work, social cohesion and social inclusion for all. SOLIDAR's members provide lifelong learning and further education opportunities to socio-economic and culturally vulnerable groups such as young people, migrants, low skilled workers etc on a daily basis.
SOLIDAR’s members are workers’ education associations, trade union education institutes and popular education movements; powerful actors promoting learning for adults on local and national level and working together for socially cohesive Europe. To give examples ABF (Sweden) organised in 2009 alone over 90,000 study circles for more than 750,000 people; AUSER (Italy) has 260,000 members with 40,000 volunteers providing continuous learning through the Università Popolare (UNIAUSER); DGB Bildungswerk (Germany) has 30 years of experience in vocational training to trade unionists; and La Ligue de l'Enseignement has been working for over 140 years for everyone to be able to access education, encouraging popular education and permanent education all over France.
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) report entitled “The well-being of nations: The role of human and social capital”, outlines the role of human and social capital. According to the report, human capital is the knowledge and skills derived from education, training and experience and considered a most valuable resource. In the recent decades, the contribution of human capital in economic and social development has been highlighted, as one of the main vehicles for innovation, competitiveness and social cohesion.
The EU’s lifelong learning programme, as a part of the education and training policy is not only sustaining human capital development but also endows people with skills, knowledge and competences that enhance their employability, improve their adaptability to a changing and flexible labour market, and foster the contribution to innovation. In light of the European Union key strategies adopted in the course of last 10 years, there is still a need to strengthen the social dimension of education as a public good to achieve decent work, social cohesion and social inclusion.