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The meeting of different cultures, languages and traditions in Portugal

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Twenty-five young people, eight days, five different European countries and many ideas and sustainable opportunities to share and discover: these are the ingredients of the Erasmus + Youth Exchange project that took place from 6 to 13 September in Covilha, Portugal. Italy took part in it, together with Spain, Romania, the Czech Republic and Portugal, with five young people sent by the Youmore Morcelli Giovani association, which has been promoting leisure time, training and education for young people in Brescia for a long time. Among them, Stefano left because he wanted Europe, Simone instead to discover the world of European exchanges. It was also Irene’s first experience: she left because she wanted to try something new, to meet peers living in other places and to see the differences, always with the support of young people from her own country. Alessandro left because he loves travelling and discovering the world: being able to do it at a low cost and with the possibility of meeting many people from other countries seemed to him an opportunity not to be missed! The theme of the project convinced Greta, who combined her interest in sustainability with her desire to experience this kind of thing for the first time.

One of the main objectives of the exchange, entitled Eco Opportunities, was to raise awareness among the participants of the importance of the connection between man and nature, in particular by providing tools to promote entrepreneurship in areas such as sustainable tourism and the circular economy. The project was in fact organised by the Portuguese association Pinus Verde. This association was set up in 1998 with strong links to the Pinhal hinterland and since then has essentially been an instrument at the service of a community and a territory whose transversal objectives include improving the quality of life of rural communities, as well as promoting the multiple uses of the forest and safeguarding the environmental heritage. During the week there were different moments to work together towards these goals: there were moments to reflect on one’s own concepts of sustainability, responsible tourism and circular economy, moments to work in groups and create videos that could communicate these same concepts, but also quizzes and engaging team games to test the group’s knowledge of these issues, as well as to increase it.

The theme was also developed in the visits to the area: thanks to Pinus Verde, the participants were able to enter the Honey House, a meeting point for beekeepers in the area, visit the beehives, Janeiro De Cima, one of the twenty-six villages of the “Aldeias do Xisto” project, a social development project that has tourism as a key tool. The discovery of Portugal’s inland region continued with several hikes in the Serra da Estrela Natural Park, up to the highest point in the country.

But the heart of these exchanges is also the meeting of different cultures, languages and traditions from all over Europe. At the end of the day, there were intercultural nights, with each group presenting their country, showing photos, videos or offering quizzes or teaching traditional dances.

The evening continued with a tasting of typical products. These, as well as other free moments during the week, have the aim of introducing young Europeans to their Union, of putting them to the test in a multicultural context that would rarely be possible to breathe in everyday life.
They return home with a wealth of soft skills: social, civic, creative and linguistic competences, the same as those attested by the Youthpass, the certificate issued at the end of the exchange. In everyone’s baggage there are also smiles, new ties and the desire to start again.

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Youth Exchange: “Youth For The Future”

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Hi guys!

People who are writing this article are a group of youngsters who decided to depart for 10 days to the completely and absolutely unknown new country which is Armenia. We left on 20th of April thanks to one youth exchange within Erasmus+, under the title “Youth for the future” with a topic of environmental protection, recycling, and respect for nature. Wrapped in the dark and silent snowflakes, we arrived, late in the night in the city of Aghveran, the small village at 2000m altitude nestled between the Rocky Mountains and deep valleys in the region of Kotayk, a little more to the north of the capital city of Yerevan.

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EVS in Finland

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Europe of Possibilities

A year of European Voluntary Service in Finland

My name is Cristina, I am 27 years old and I come from Verona.

From 2016 to 2017 I had a possibility to perform National Civilian Service at Euro desk Center of Valpolicella-Valdadige and it was an amazing and eye-opening experience.

During this year of collaboration, one of my tasks was to organize the meetings in the High Schools of the county of Verona and to inform youngsters regarding the possible opportunities abroad offered by “Erasmus+” of the European Union. I stayed astonished by EVS, but still, I haven’t found the project that completely fits me in everything.

Until, in one extremely warm day in July, I saw on Youmore Morcelli Giovani Facebook page the news about one EVS project in Finland. Continue reading

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The boy and his EVS project “Mediterranean Dream” in Czech Republic

Questo post è disponibile anche in: Italian

My European Volunteer Service has begun quite challenging , having to go into a project that has already begun, but above all, I have found myself in a city, Hradec Králové, and in a country, Czech Republic, with different habits to those I was used to in Italy. Fortunately, I have been very supported both by the co-ordinator and the other volunteers, which have made things a lot easier for me. It’s been hard for me to start a little new life on my own, and to have to think for example about things that I did not have to think in Italy, or living in a family where someone else thought of me. Also, regarding the activities, it was not easy, because I found myself engaged in activities I had never done, such as work with children. Continue reading

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IT WAS AMAZING

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Amazing: surprising, astonishing, stunning, astounding.

Was it waiting for me? Who are the people I am supposed to share this trip with? Will I find anything good to eat? Should I actually share my room with a stranger? And a bathroom with 25 people who I don’t know? Will I be able to communicate? These are questions we started our trip with.

When are we going? This was the only question on our minds before the trip.

A thing that happened in the middle is a wonderful story, and we thank Youmore Morcelli Giovani for promoting projects addressing young people in the field of the  ErasmusPlus community programme completely funded by European Commission. Continue reading

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Erasmus+ experience in Greece

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Erasmus + Experience in Greece

“The Re-Act”

Yes, I like a lot “The Re-Act”, a title of the project held from August 27 to September 6 of 2017, in the ancient Greek city of Larissa. There were some really positive Re-actions!

SVE-greece

“The Re-Act”, a title of the project held from August 27 to September 6 of 2017, in the ancient Greek city of Larissa.

Our nice group of three members composed of Laura, Emanuela and me, since the first pre-start meeting in the city of Chiari with Sona and Justina, until we found ourselves really nice connected and with the other 7 people who arrived from all parts of the Italy and who formed our group of 10 members as well. Plus other 10 Turkish and 10 Greek people, as well as 4 organizers and trainers, Fenia, Rania, Natascia, and Dimitri. All of them are so great! Continue reading

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