Trans-Mission ASBL

This Entry has been submitted.

Trans-Mission ASBL

Project Stage:
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

In Belgian society, little value is placed on active citizenship and social engagement. Olivier Gaillard is working to change that through unique events, peer to peer inspiration and guidance, tailored engagement choices and online and offline tools that are aimed at helping youth realize their potential to meet social and environmental challenges. Olivier is the first Ashoka Fellow from Belgium.

About Project

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

While 70 percent of 17-to-25-year-old Belgian youth claim to be interested in social or environmental projects, only 12 percent have ever participated in one. Resolved to bridge that gap, Olivier understands that the key to changing the system is to engage young people and turn their social commitment into action. Relying on a broad student volunteer base, Olivier is working to gain teacher support and enable youth activists to raise awareness around citizenship issues. Specifically, he invites class groups to attend participatory Forums de l'Action Sociale et Humanitaire (FLASH) events where they follow a path to citizenship in which they become actors of social change around issues of their choice. Entirely organized and run by youth, FLASH events take students and teachers out of the classroom and help kids foster a new understanding of the world and how they can change it through peer to peer guidance. High school students are led by socially engaged university students through a structured path in which they discover new opportunities. Olivier has also created the Portail de l'Action Social et Humanitaire (PLASH) – a powerful 2.0 web platform that provides interactive maps, social change auctions and concrete participation opportunities – to complement this work. Through these various program components, Olivier brands youth citizenship as a social trend, reinforced by merchandising surrounding Trans-Mission, including t-shirts, IDs, and "Youth Engagement Passports" which allow participants to track their activities and incorporate them as a consistent part of their resume. In order to become part of the Trans-Mission network, partner organizations must commit to the rules of youth-led engagement, which oftentimes contradict organizational cultures and philosophies. Olivier is hence devoting a whole pillar of his work to training and equipping partners with the tools they need to foster entrepreneurship and adapt to the new realities of youth citizenship. He is doing similar work with schools, by participating in teacher trainings, and providing guides and access to a network of experts. To be more effective, he has created the Kit de l'Action Sociale et Humanitaire (KLASH) toolkit for teachers, organizations, and youth to launch and develop social ventures.