Welcome to the official website of the L.I.K.E. project – Life Investment is the Key to Employment, is funded by the financial mechanism of the European Economic Area and the Norwegian Grant Fund and implemented by Association Sustainability for Progressive and Open Communication (SPOC) together with partners from Ireland, Iceland, Italy, Latvia and Hungary.
The project aims to research, develop and apply innovative methods to motivate and include young people with mental health problems in the labor market. These goals are achieved through the implementation of various activities. For more information on the phases of project implementation see here.
One of the direct activities for the support and empowerment of young people to improve their quality of life is the construction of the so-called “Hidden Likes” Youth Houses . Three youth houses are planned to be open – in Bulgaria, Latvia and Hungary, which will start intensive direct work with the target group of the project in 2021.
The “Hidden Likes” youth house in Bulgaria opened its doors in 2020. Information about the program, the services provided for young people and its location and contacts can be found on the website here.
The “Hidden Likes” Youth Houses offer a variety of activities designed to increase the skills of unemployed young people with mental health problems to socialize, overcome isolation and disinterest, discover and stimulate their abilities, which will become a crucial step towards their inclusion in the labor market.
The workshops are selected so that on the one hand, to respect the preferences of young NEETs identified in our study, to circumvent the resistance that has so far supported the avoidance of work and study, and on the other – to break the vicious circle of insecurity – unemployment – social exclusion with a gradual change happening in a supportive environment.
Important indicators for the personal growth and harmony of young people are their successful inclusion in a group of peers, recognizing and expressing their own emotions, assertive behavior towards others, the ability to work, developing talents and interest in the arts, maintaining physical health through sports, balanced diet and avoidance of harmful substances. Therefore, a particularly suitable form of personal development is the participation in group activities, including the listed areas and increasing the skills of the participants in them.
The main activities included in the Youth Houses are individual counseling, animal therapy, art classes, sports, trainings on healthier lifestyle.
The participation of young NEETs in the youth houses’ activities will make them active, responsible, empathetic and more confident. It will give them a sense of belonging to a group of their own kind. It will improve their physical health, give them useful knowledge and the opportunity to build healthy habits. It will reduce anxiety and other manifestations of their mental problems. It will reveal the abilities they have and build new ones.