All posts by Ophélie Mercier

Brexit Statement

In 2008 Caravan was set up by 6 European circus schools sharing the common objective to promote circus practices in youth education across Europe. Since then, the network and many of our projects have been generously supported by the EU programme Erasmus+. We therefore have a strong belief in the power of the Europe to create and support brilliant circus projects. 

Now in 2018 we are a truly international network, gathering 30 members from 25 countries across the world including Spain, Italy, Slovenia, United Kingdom, Ethiopia, Germany, Israel, Sweden, Czech Republic, Belgium, Ireland, Romania, Finland, Switzerland, Guadeloupe, Russia, Afghanistan, Luxembourg, Turkey, South Korea, South Africa and Palestine. 

It’s through international collaborations and exchanges that we’ve learnt the most from our peers and strengthened our knowledge in working with young people and socially disadvantaged people, discovered the most wonderful things about other cultures, and had the most fun!

A referendum took place in the UK in June 2016, 52% of those who voted in the referendum supported Brexit (British exit from the European Union). The United Kingdom is due to leave the EU on 29 March 2019 and is currently in a period of negotiation.

European funding supports much of our mobility projects, and it isn’t clear at the moment if our current and future UK-based members will still be able to participate. What is clear to us though is that post-Brexit we will endeavour to maintain a strong relationship with our key member, Belfast Community School, a founding member of our network and longstanding supporter of youth circus. 

We still also strive to sustain and build new connections with the United Kingdom after their potential exit from the EU.

The issues surrounding Brexit aren’t just a UK problem, across Europe political tensions are rising. It is more important than ever to stick together and build international connections and collaborations. From the start Caravan has stood for international collaboration, and we won’t stop that now. 

Join the Caravan team as our new Communications Intern

Interested in working internationally? Passionate about the arts and circus? Looking for experience in communications?

We are looking for a hard working individual to join our small and dynamic team as Communications Intern, starting In February 2019. The internship will last for 4 months.

Caravan International Youth and Social Circus Network gathers 30 circus schools around the world from 25 countries. We advocate for the positive benefits of circus on the lives of youth and disadvantaged people. 

Caravan’s head office is based at the circus school of Le Plus Petit Cirque du Monde in Bagneux, France.

For more information, follow up on Facebook for latest updates

Application deadline: 29 January 2019

Job description

The role of the Communications Intern is to assist in the implementation of Caravan’s communication strategy.

Under the guidance of the Communications Coordinator, the tasks will include:

  • Community management, content creation and maintenance of Caravan’s social media channels 
  • Updating the website and generating content for the Caravan monthly newsletter 
  • Working with PhotoShop and InDesign to create publications 
  • Get involved in supporting Caravan’s diverse international membership 
  • Performing other tasks as requested

Person Specification 

  • Fluent in English
  • Some experience in creating social media content professionally 
  • Studied/studying communications, or strong interest to work in communications or some experience professionally 
  • An interest in working in the arts/cultural/circus sector
  • Desirable qualities: skills in WordPress, Photoshop, InDesign or MailChimp


Start date:  25 February 2019. 

The internship will last for 4 months (until the end of June).

The role will be 15 hours per week. We expect at least 2 days/week in the office in Bagneux (at Le Plus Petit Cirque Du Monde). The team is part time and can be flexible around which time of the week you want to work. 

Interested? Send your CV and letter of motivation to 

September newsletter: new resource for youth and social circus

Our mission here at Caravan is to spread the positive impact of youth and social circus, so we’re extremely excited to announce that we have launched our brand new monthly newsletter. It’ll be full of youth and social circus opportunities, news, jobs and updates and we hope it will become a useful resource for everyone in the sector.

You can read the first newsletter here. Meet our two new members Hringleikur, Iceland and Compagnie des Contraires, France and find out about their social circus activities. Discover job opportunities in Luxembourg, France, Australia, USA and Ireland and sign up to international conferences and training for circus trainers.

You can sign up to future newsletters by clicking here. If you have youth and/or social circus news, updates, jobs, events or training opportunities that you’d like to share with the world – please do send it over to us by clicking hereCircus Legends Youth Exchange, read more here.


Vacancy : Communication and Project Coordinator

Join the Caravan Circus Network team

Communication and Project Coordinator required

Caravan International Youth and Social Circus Network seeks an exceptionnal individual to coordinate the internal and external communications of the network and contribute to its development.


The international non-profit association « CARAVAN » was officially founded in October 2008 with 6 European youth and social circus organisations. In 2018, Caravan gathers 28 members from 24 countries. Out of the 28 organisations, 20 are European with other members hailing from all over the world. Together, they share the common objective to promote circus practices in youth education and to encourage the development of the youth and social circus sector through concrete actions such as youth exchanges, training for trainers’ programmes and research projects.

All through the years, Caravan has gained knowledge in the field of Youth and Social Circus, not only thanks to its concrete activities but also thanks to the research carried out in the framework of the Erasmus+ programme. Caravan research projects aim to professionalise the sector by creating the first third level education for youth and social circus teachers.

Caravan members work in their local and national contexts and work together on the international level. They use circus arts to invent new possibilities for the social and professional inclusion of people with fewer opportunities. With this in mind, the network supports its members in advocating for the positive benefits of youth and social circus. International advocacy helps the members to gain recognition and support within their own local context and with local authorities.

Caravan Head Office is based at the circus school of Le Plus Petit Cirque du Monde in Bagneux, France.

For more information, please visit : and


Key purpose of the role

We are seeking a Communication and Project Coordinator to support the development of the network during a time of growth and expansion. He/She is a key member of the small Caravan team of two people, working closely together and reporting to the Development Manager.

This position has two core functions:

1) The Communication and Project Coordinator will be responsible for the external and internal communications of the Network. He/She will communicate the strategy, activities and impact of the network to the outside world (press, stakeholders, decision-makers, influencers, funders) by promoting Caravan projects and the actions of its members. He/she will also ensure a dynamic collaborative network by sharing information to and between members and enabling exchange and collaboration among the membership.

2) The Communication and Project Coordinator will proactively contribute to the development of new projects in the field of Youth and Social Circus and manage a variety of international mobility projects thus contributing directly to the development of Caravan.


We expect the Communication and Project Coordinator to

Ensure excellent internal and external communications by:

  • Promoting activities and impact of Caravan members
  • Managing and developing Caravan website and digital communication platforms to ensure efficient and effective communications with partners and stakeholders
  • Designing Caravan marketing materials for external distribution (press, stakeholders, decision-makers)
  • Writing, editing and distributing Caravan quarterly newsletters
  • Developing an internal communication strategy to ensure strong links between the members
  • Creating video materials to promote Caravan projects
  • Developing and nurturing excellent relationships with member organisations, partners and funders
  • Representing the organization within appropriate events and networks

Participate in the development of new projects in the field of Youth and Social Circus by:

  • Writing regional and European funding applications (mainly Erasmus+)
  • Coordinating international mobility projects
  • Together with the Development Manager and Caravan board, organising General Meetings of the Network and other international events (European seminars, training for trainers, youth exchanges,…)


  • A dynamic and resourceful person with at least 2 years’ experience in a communication role, preferably in the non-profit sector
  • Native English speaker or very high level of fluency in English
  • Strong experience in developing and managing projects
  • Excellent communication and partnership-building skills
  • Good knowledge and significant experience in social media and various digital tools, as well as Pack office and Pack Adobe (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator)
  • Excellent coordination skills, including a strong ability to prioritize and multi-task


  • Speaking and writing French is highly desirable – any other languages are welcome
  • Graphic design skills
  • Knowledge of the International circus or cultural sector


This is a one-year part-time contract expected to start on Monday 20th August 2018. Hours are 20 hours per week and can be flexible to suit the employee. The position is based in Le Plus Petit Cirque du Monde. Normally weekend work is not required except during Caravan events. Overtime will be compensated in time off in lieu.

Monthly salary is 1200€ net. Compensation: 50% of the monthly transportation pass


To apply please send your CV (max. two pages) and cover letter (max. one page) to Ophélie Mercier:

The closing date for applications is Friday 29th June. Interviews for suitable candidates will be held on Monday 9th July in Paris. Please contact for more information.

Welcoming 3 new members in 2018 !

Caravan is expanding in Europe and beyond ! Caravan is pursuing its developing and introducing 3 new members :


Cirkokrog  The Association for Circus Pedagogy – Cirkokrog is a nongovernmental nonprofit association that is developing and working in the field of circus pedagogy, youth and social circus in Slovenia since 2005. Read more


Centre International des Arts en Mouvement aims to make Aix-en-Provence (city in the South of France) one of the leading cities in circus arts transmission at all levels, and a city committed with the artists of its renewal. Read more


Fekat Circusblossoming circus in Amharic, was initiated in 2004 in Addis Ababa – Ethiopia – by a group of young artists for whom circus was the most important thing in their lives. Read more

This new configuration will enable larger partnerships and create further opportunities for youth exchanges and continue dissiminating experiences through Trainings of Trainers.

CTF in Action 3 : Start in March 2018

The third Edition of Caravan Training for Trainers’ programme has kicked off in Le Plus Petit Cirque du Monde the last week of March 2018.

From March to December 2018, 20 participants coming from 12 Caravan members will take part in this programme.

The training is based on a Caravan research directed in 2014 that led to the creation of the  Guidebook for Social Circus Trainers.  This manual is the outcome of a 5-year European research carried out by 2 universities, 8 Caravan members and the Caravan office.

The training will take place in 4 different places. There will be 4 sessions of 5 days.
The 1st session took place from 26 – 30 March 2018 in Bagneux (France) and will was delivered by Le Plus Petit Cirque du Monde
The 2nd session will take place from 4-8 June 2018 in Tampere (Finland) and will be delivered by Sorin Sirkus.
The 3rd session will take place from 8-12 October 2018 in Brussels (Belgium) and will be delivered by Ecole de Cirque de Bruxelles.
The last session will take place from 3-7 December 2018 in Galway (Ireland) and will be delivered by Galway Community Circus School.
You can look at the photos of the week below


Caravan in the Cirque de Demain

Caravan was presenting its work in the Club PRO – Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain on the 2nd of February 2018.

Caravan Board members presented different aspect of Caravan’s work in front of representatives from the large field of circus profesionals. Several members attended, among which Ecole de Cirque de Bruxelles,  Le Plus Petit Cirque du Monde, Galway Community Circus and Sorin Sirkus. Moreover, Sirkhane and Mobile Mini Circus for children, respectively from Turkey and Afghanistan presented their work in the context of war.

This was also the occasion to launch the project “Volunteer de demain” promoting the participation of former artists from the festival in Social Circus organisations. This project will be launched in 2018. For more information, please visit :


Slovenian Circus Perspectives

Caravan was welcomed this weekend in Ljubljana (Slovenia) by Skala Fuskabo, Cirkokrog and Zavod Bufeto.

Along the organisation of the Klovnbuf Festival, the seminar  « Circus perspectives » was organized to bring together Slovenian actors from the field of youth circus. This small community is hoping to launch the first Slovenian umbrella of youth and social circus in order to develop the sector. Their first objective is to obtain a circus space to organise freely workshops and classes.

Caravan facilitated a workshop enabling the participants to discuss their vision of youth and social circus as well as learning from examples of European cooperation, networking and research towards the professionalization of the sector.

This seminar was a great occasion to understand the reality of circus for our partner, Skala; and hopefully will lead to further cooperation projects.


Caravan 2016 Annual Report is out !

Caravan just released its 2016 Annual Report highlighting an intense year of activities and development.

In 2016, not only Caravan received financial support from the European Commission, but it also benefited from a great development of its membership, gathering 19 partners.

2016, marked the final year of the project ” Circus + : Research on Youth and Social circus pedagogy“. Aiming at promoting the professionalization of the actors in the field of youth and social circus, the project created the job profiles for level 4 and 6 education, and developed 2 European frameworks of competences.

The results were presented in an international seminar that was held in Brussels, on June 29-30, 2017; entitled “Transformation through Circus Arts : A new narrative for Europe”.

2016, featured the implementation of Circus Transformation in Action, the  four-week Caravan training for trainers hosted by four Caravan partners. It also launched its second edition in November 2016.

Finally, as every year Caravan organized a youth exchange in Galway; offered opportunities for over 40 young volunteers and created connections between young artists to perform in youth festivals.

To know more