More Accessible, Safer Spaces – Online Manual for Youth Work Settings

Illustrations: Kiira Sirola

Welcome to the Journey Towards Safer and More Accessible Spaces!

We believe that positive changes in our society are possible even when the times are tough. By building safer, more accessible spaces, which broaden our minds and bodies to the use of creative methods, we can have a space of trust where even the most challenging topics can be brought into discussion.

Creative Safer Spaces Online Manual dives into the principles for safer spaces and accessibility as well as creative dialogue methods used in youth work settings. This manual is a clear and practical tool for professionals and educators working with young people and young adults aiming to create a creative and safe working environment. 

Additionally, teachers, cultural and youth event producers and coordinators as well as communicators wishing to develop their working and learning environments and local communities into a safer, more creative, more equal, and more diverse direction should definitely utilise this manual. 

This manual is based on two topics and approaches: anti-racism and anti-ableism. In practice, this means that these topics have been considered in the writing process of this manual as well as while adapting its methods into actual youth work.

This manual consists of the following three main chapters:

  1. Principles for a Safer Space
  2. Accessibility in Mind
  3. Creative Safer Spaces


Principles for a Safer Space chapter focuses on the requirements for a safer space and explains how the principles for a safer space can be taken into account already in the early planning stages of an event. This chapter also covers practices for fixing and upholding a safer space. 

Accessibility in Mind chapter, on the other hand, discusses how accessibility can be considered in the planning and organisation of events. This chapter also explains what ableism means.

Lastly, Creative Safer Spaces chapter explains why safer, accessible space is a requirement for creative activities, and the chapter also provides some creative dialogue methods to utilise in youth work settings.

This manual is a concrete tool for organising activities, training sessions and events as well as for informing about them or alternatively as a tool for integrating the practices of accessibility and safer spaces into your way of working. The manual focuses on communication, venue arrangements as well as support measures of activity planning and organisation and post-event activities. 

In addition to insights and examples, this manual also provides guidelines, check lists and templates for everyday use.

We wish you enjoyable reading moments with this online manual!


Kuvituksessa käsi pitelee värikästä spriaalia, joka on ikään kuin nauha.

Principles for a Safer Space

Safer space is a constantly changing and developing concept. A safer space can be upheld, fixed, and renewed with the help of jointly agreed guidelines. Safer and more equal space makes you feel heard, seen, connected, understood and safe. In a safer space, everyone commits to maintaining the space and making necessary adjustments in order to create one.

Aurinkolasien toisen linssin takaa kurkkaa kaksi valkoihoista ihmistä. Toisen linssin takaa kurkkaa ruskea ihminen. Linssit ovat värikkäät, mutta eri sävyiset.

Accessibility in Mind

The goal of accessibility is to safeguard the basic rights of people with disabilities and make them standard operating procedures for events and event venues. When accessibility has become a permanent and lasting practice, the perception of “everyone” expands when it comes to who are welcome to participate in activities.

Piirretyssä kuvassa kaksi nuorta kiipeilevät hymyilevän ja mököttävän naamion ympärillä.

Creative Safer Spaces

When the space is safe and accessible for all participants, creativity can flourish! Creativity requires the principles for safer spaces to be deployed. Creativity, in turn, enables change and creating new. With creativity, we can achieve new levels of learning and understanding that we may not be able to access with the traditional teaching methods that focus on verbal, conscious and logical thinking alone.

Erasmus+ logo.
Erasmus+ rahoittaa tätä hanketta.