Probation centres are institutions that carry out preventive, caring, educational and resocialisation and therapeutic activities for minors. Juveniles are placed in the centres on the basis of court decisions in connection with non-compliance with compulsory education, peer violence, aggression, criminal acts. There are 97 youth probation centres in Poland. Meanwhile, the law on the operation of probation centres in Poland is outdated (2001) and inadequate to contemporary challenges. It lacks, inter alia, provisions on counteracting discrimination or legal education of youth. At the same time, probation officers working in crisis centres lack effective and attractive tools in the field of counteracting violence and discrimination among youth (Ombudsman for Children, 2018).
As part of the project, 28 male and female educators from 14 probation centres in Poland took part in the certified ART-TZA Aggression Replacement Training. Subsequently, thanks to the knowledge and competences gained, those taking part in the training carried out social microcampaigns in partnerships with local institutions. The campaigns, which were often themed specifically around the prevention of violence and discrimination, targeted young people from the centres, local young people and the local community more broadly. A total of nine such campaigns were conducted. At the end of the project, the Grantee organised a conference in Warsaw attended by 80 people working with young people experiencing various difficulties. A good practice brochure was also published and distributed to institutions working with youth.
Through participation in the project, male and female educators improved their skills in working with young people, including responding to discrimination and working with perpetrators of prejudice and hate violence. Young people supported by probation services developed their social competences, gained knowledge about the phenomenon of discrimination and increased their sensitivity. The final conference was a networking event for male and female educators from probation services, organisations and institutions working with young people. The publication produced as part of the project is intended to be used in future as material for advocacy activities aimed at changing the law on the operation of probation centres.