Best practice to empower young people from ÖrebroBostäder, Sweden.
Each summer, ÖrebroBostäder (ÖBO) organises the ‘Summer Champs’ internship programme in the Vivalla neighbourhood. The programme aims to empower young people by providing them opportunities to get on the career ladder and positively influence their neighbourhoods. Each year, 120 people get the chance to improve life in their community and gain essential skills for the workplace.
How does the programme work?
Interested young people aged 15-19 can apply for Summer Champs through the Örebro municipality. Each work placement lasts three weeks. Participants join a small group working on an activity based on their interests:
- Trash collection
- Art creation
- Activities for children
Youth guides supervise each group to ensure that the participants get the most out of their experience.
All interns receive a stipend, but there is also a scholarship programme to provide incentives to interns to try their best to improve during their placement. The most successful interns can also attend a Leader Academy to continue their professional growth.
What are the outcomes of Summer Champs?
Tackling unemployment: Many young people find their first work experience at Summer Champs, enabling them to develop skills for the workplace. As the work is paid, the programme raises the disposable income of families in the area.
Sustainability: The promotion of sustainable living is key the programme. Activities are focused on reusing materials and working towards climate neutrality. Summer Champs recently gained coverage on Swedish television channel SVT, which highlighted the work of interns recycling bicycles. The bicycles were sold, and the profit was donated to various charities which the young people chose. You can watch more here.
Social integration: The programme shows appreciation for the skills of young people and gives them an opportunity to influence the community around them. In addition, the programme helps to break down borders between neighbourhoods. Although most Summer Champs interns are from the Vivalla area, many are from other areas of Örebro. It is therefore an important step in creating links between different neighbourhoods, combatting prejudice, and bringing the wider community together.
Find out more
To find out more on this initiative, please contact the organisation’s Coordinator through the Members Only Zone.