Centre for Digital Youth Care launched a new digital network at a conference in Brussels the 26th of February this year in collaboration with the European project Ch@dvice, which is an offspring of the Belgian organisation Child Focus. The network is called Digital Youth Care. Our primary responsibility was to establish the digital platform digitalyouthcare.eu and be a part of the advisory board that has dealt with guidelines, target group and values concerning the network.

The network applies to counselors, professionals and organisations working with digital counseling. On the website digitalyouthcare.eu -members are able to share knowledge and software, engage in dialogue with professionals of relevance and find inspiration which can be used in their own practices.

The network also addresses organisations that contemplate establishing a counseling practise.

 

digitalyouthcare.eu

I was commissioned to present the motives for establishing such a network and it was a pleasure for me to communicate CfDP’s values and attitude towards digital counseling, Open Source and knowledge sharing on a European level. In the following I have selected some of the key elements of my presentation:

– Digital Youth Care is independent of political and economic affairs.

And this is one of the strong points of the network, as it ensures the possibility to keep focusing on the daily practise and make sure that it will be relevant and advantageous for each individual counselor to be a member of the network. The network should be run primarily by the members and a moderator will be connected to the project.

By now I have visited quite a few European networks and my experience is that political and economic affairs – personal and/or organisational – might block the way for the constructive and relevant agenda. That meetings and conferences aim to please other interested parties than the professionals who participate.

– Digital Youth Care is driven by curiosity

Most networks are among other things connected with reports from the members and participation at conferences and meetings. But due to our dependency, it is the curiosity for our own practises and professionalism, and the need to learn from each other and gain new knowledge which drive the activities at digitalyouthcare.eu

– Open source

This concept means a lot to us and mirrors how we think about development and knowledge at CfDP. Open source can be described as the process when a source code connected to developed software is released so that everyone is able to implement, improve or adjust the software in question for free. In general we believe that we shall use each other’s knowledge and software and develop it further with one common goal – to ensure the best possible surroundings for the youth who visit our counseling offers.

CfDP has developed software for chat, mail counseling, debate forums and composed handbooks and methods in connection with digital counseling, which can be downloaded on digitalyouthcare.eu for free. And we are actually quite proud of it.

We are well on our way… Do you want to join us?

 

Written by Erroll Marshall

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