YAMNFL – focus group no13 (Association for Developing Voluntary Work Novo mesto)

Focus Group

Project “YOUth Ambassadors of Non-Formal Learning”

Country: Slovenia

Organization: Association for Developing Voluntary Work Novo mesto

Facilitator: Mateja Lozar

Date and location: 28.05.2020 – online


List of questions for Focus Group


  • Do you think for NFE is important age, gender, nationality?

We believe that these characteristics do not have a decisive influence, but that NFEs are mainly chosen by people who are so mature that knowledge is of value to them. Citizenship is important to the extent that an individual has the conditions to access the NFE.

  • What does NFE mean to you? Can you define?

For me, the NFE means any form of non-formal education – that is, teaching outside of school, which takes place within societies, organizations,…
Education outside primary, secondary and higher / university education. The NFE is a dissemination of knowledge that does not require a valid certificate.
It seems to me a very broad and loose concept. It represents learning that goes beyond formal educational institutions and regulated programs, where we gain useful knowledge, disseminate it and deepen it. It is something that an individual voluntarily delves into and is supposed to be interested in. We can often gain more practical experience, social skills and contacts through the NFE, as well as some career opportunities. With the help of NFE, we can broaden our horizons greatly.


  • Have you ever been a participant in an NFE program? If yes – in which one?

I participate in the student organization of my faculty (Medical Faculty LJ), where the Virus project organizes various peer education, internal education, motivational weekends, debates and congresses… I also intended to go on an exchange, but unfortunately will have to wait for another year.
The other participants did not participate in NFE programs, except dancing and language classes.

  • Do you know something about Youth Law/Strategy/Action Plan, as well as other documents related to youth?


  • Have you ever participated in the youth decision-making process? If yes, in which one?


  • Do you think that more support from the Government is needed to improve the status of young people and in the NFE sphere? If yes, what are the benefits of this, and what are the disadvantages?

I don't know much about this, but I would say that any financial help and attention of the government affects or contributes to the better functioning of the whole NFE system.
Yes. Government assistance could come in financial terms as well as in “advertising” – so that more young people could become acquainted with such forms of education and have the opportunity to participate.
Yes, the government should invest much more in young people, because we are a generation that will “take” things into their own hands in a few years, “the world stands on us”. But I think they are unfortunately not aware of that enough. However, I think that soon when the government is too involved in various student projects, these are no longer so genuine.

  • Does NFE activities help you for your personal development. If yes, how? If not, why?

I believe that NFE influences development on a personal level, while formal education tends to develop within a society. At NFE, an individual develops through some activities that he likes to do, so in my opinion, progress is faster and more obvious.
Yes. Any additional knowledge is beneficial to an individual’s personal development. It enables the acquisition of additional knowledge and skills that are not available in formal education.
With the help of NFE, in addition to gaining new knowledge, you can also gain a huge amount of life experience, social skills, new friends and acquaintances. If you work in an area that also interests you in your career, such projects are a great way to get a job in the future.

For you, why is it important to be involved in activities through non-formal education?

In a way, these activities are also a hobby for me, a quality leisure time. They give me a lot, and I can give something to society too. It also helps me find a circle of like-minded people and gives me a good roadmap for the future.
Non-formal education is, in my opinion, necessary for the general development of personality, because, as I mentioned earlier, development happens imperceptibly, through the processes we like to do, in a circle of people with whom we feel comfortable…


Facilitator: Youth does not know much about the laws, the question is why. When we spoke about it, participants said that if they want to know about laws, any kind of laws, they wouold have to inquire a lot – for example, where and when they are published, if that are new laws or older versions… Also, there are no pamphlets, newsletters etc. in the institutions that are involved in NFE, where you could read these kind of info. Also, people are not informed enough, not about the laws, action plans only, but about the possibilities of different kinds of NFE and its recognition.

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