Competence oriented open learning for disadvantaged learners

BYMBE – Bringing Young Mothers Back to Education
Symfos – Basic clearing box

Symfos basic clearing box has been used in support of the work of social workers, teachers and trainers for the purpose of sustaining young mothers between 15 and 25 years old in re-entering education or training for a better access to the labour world.

Young mothers dropping out of education are facing difficulties in going back to education or training or entering the labour market with low qualifications. It is still a larger scale problem in Europe, and a consortium of partners with a complementary mix of skills and experience was created in order to develop a project tackling this issue on a European level.

Challenge Tackled

Increasing professional and social integration opportunities for young mothers.

Target group, beneficiaries or clients

Young mothers

Social workers, teachers, youth workers and trainers


Development of support tools, including SymfoS basic clearing box, to establish the needs of young mothers in difficulty to help them complete their education by offering them appropriate vocational guidance and counselling services.

SymfoS – Symbols for Success promotes an innovative education and career guidance method addressed to young disadvantaged people based on sets of symbols. As very often the traditional counselling methods are aimed at young people who have advanced writing and reading skills, are integrated in the national education and professional training framework and are already supported by a  strong social system. These kinds of interventions can be ineffective with young people, who, for various reasons and obstacles in their environmental situation, find difficulties in expressing in words their  situation, their needs and their goals for the future. Working with symbols is an opportunity for them to use a universal language to do it and especially to detect their own needs and desires. 


The symfoS basic clearing box allows to assess complexed situations and set goals by using objects representing ideas. This tool helps identifying people’s hidden resources and potentials without using complicated methods. Symbols, objects, images, help to get clearness about our goals and to plan concrete next steps in education. 

Unique Selling Point

SymfoS basic clearing box in not just only a training method providing some exercises, it is at the same time the provision of orientation, empowerment and self-confidence building.


Bring disadvantaged people back to education or to a pathway that suits them.


SymfoS basic clearing box aims to foster the engagement and self-responsibilities of people, therefore it could be transferred to other projects and contexts. Moreover, the advantage of SymfoS is that it is very flexible and you can adapt it to the specific needs of the client.