On one rainy Sunday morning four of us, brave and tall estonian girls excited about their trip to the south, met in Tartu coach station to start a day full of travelling. After many hours by buses, a plane and a train we arrived to Poronin, a small town in Poland that became our home for the upcoming week.
The project held there was called „Erasmusic+“ so as expected by the title we did have a lot of activities connected with music. Every country-Lithuania, Croatia, Slovenia, Greece and Estonia- had to prepare a presentation about their national music in different decades starting from the 60’s and finishing in the present. To our surprise there were also some songs that were surprisingly famous in other countries. For example there was a Romanian participant who could sing „Kuula“ (by Ott Lepland) by heart and a Greek girl who loved „Rändajad“ and its performer Sandra Nurmsalu.
In addition to presentations about music we also had a lot of fun during every other activity. For example we had a hike to Morksie Oko in Tatra mountains where we saw an elk only two meters away, a relaxing evening in the thermal pools, a city game that included tasks like „find a happy horse“ and then lots and lots of competitions in billiards, table football and table tennis.
Every day finished with an intercultural evening. It was a great chance to test our knowledge in quizes, learn the fact that there is still much to learn about every country on Earth, to taste different national foods and drinks and to get to know some new interesting songs and dances.
Time flew and before we even realized it the week was over. How else but writing our own song would finish Erasmusic+ perfectly! Listen to it here!
Summary was made by Liis Randmäe
Pictures made by Genelyn All
The 8 day youth exchange took place in a historic city of Istanbul, Turkey from 20th November to 27th November 2016. It gathered together 60 young people aged 16-30 from 6 countries (Estonia, Denmark, Lithuania, Norway, United Kingdom and Turkey).
The aim of project was to increase the satisfaction and the motivation of the young people, to contribute to increasing the productivity with the right choice of career and right employment.
During the 8 days young people learned about unemployment and jobs in other countries through question and answer work, group work, discussions and surveys.
Youth Exchange allowed them to get to know new people, become aware of socially relevant topics and discover new cultures through activities such as cultural evenings, games, ice-breakers, energizers and outdoor activities.
People had a chance to take part in a world café, prepare and improve their CV, motivation letter and test their skills in public speaking exercise.
At the end of youth exchange every one of us got something from this awesome project:
Romania .. a land that might seem quite far and unknown, but actually hides so much more than one could guess at first. It brought together 9 very different young people all over Estonia, each with an aim to participate in a youth exchange on the topic of „Eco life.“ This kind of opportunity was provided by Seiklejate Vennaskond, what provides and also carries through different projects, bringing together people from all over the world. Of the 9 Estonians who participated, only 2 had an experience with this kind of thing, meaning that for the most, it was a first experience of this kind and it did not disappoint. The project took place quite far from the capital city of Bucharest, in mountainous Poiana Negrii. The place of the accommodation was marvellous, with the main house and smaller houses for sleeping. Worth mentioning is the fact that accommodation, food and different activities are all free for the participants and even the transportation costs are paid back later – incredible! Like every project of this kind, the first days were spent learning each others names, getting used to the surroundings and everything like that, because there were so much to do and so many people. Countries who participated were Estonia, Lithuania, Spain, Czech Republic and Romania. Every day there were group activities, games and other these kinds of activities and the evenings were for the cultural nights. All this helped to create friendships, that still last. It is worth a mention that we also took a day trip to Vatra Dornei, a little town nearby and had a hike in the 12 apostle mountains. All this was in defiance of different weather conditions, like rain, hail and snow, but still, there was also sunny weather sometimes. One of the most memorable things was definitely the Oscars Gala – during the day we worked in groups and each group had to film a video clip, that would bring attention to the ecological lifestyle. In the evening, during the gala, the best movie and best male and female etc. were chosen – everything felt like the real Oscars gala.
One thing that definitely described the whole youth exchange was the fact that perception of time disappeared completely. It was because there was so much to do all the time and spending time with great people makes you forget the time passing. So that’s why it was so sad to say goodbye to Poiana Negrii after almost two weeks and the goodbye for many people was happy and bittersweet at the same time. Even though I have been to project before through Seiklejate Vennaskond, I can surely say that every youth exchange and training is different, but the experiences you get are all worth it. I can surely say that none of us 9 would have never gotten to this kind of place like Poiana Negrii on our own and that is why these Erasmus + projects are a great way to explore new places, get new experiences and make friendships that last a lifetime.
Read more in project blog.
Summary was made by Renata lukk.
In November 2016 we took part in a youth exchange project between 5th and 14th called "Livin' The Green Life", during which we spent an unforgettable week in Polish Tatra mountains in Poronin. We stayed in a really good hotel and ate typical polish food in a restaurant nearby. There were people from four different European countries. Together everyday we participated in exciting workshops which focused on ecology and its influence on our everyday life. One of the main topics of the project was the balance at the human-nature level and using natural resources without excessively infringing our nature. During a week we had a lot of games, focused mostly on ecology, we had an opportunity to present Estonia and see presentations of other countries as well. But most important is that we made a lot of new friends and had a chance to see Poland, which was really amazing.
Summary was made by Irina Vihhoreva
Our awesome estonian group which was made of girls took part of a very interesting and educational youth exchange in Italy, Montone from 24.september until 1.october 2016. The youth exchange theme/subject was the color of Religions. On this youth exchange the were young people at age of 18-30years old from Estonia, Italy, Georgia and Turkey. The travelling to the youth exchange was in two parts: Estonian team leader and one participant travelled together from Riga airport trough Turkey and spent a night in Rome staying at a very nice young estonian lady; The other 3 participants flew together from Tallinn airport and travelled together to the Venue. And the same way was with leaving the project. During the youth exchange we practiced different ways of working : did a lot of group work/teamwork , several debates happened, we introduced Estonian religious situation and we were learing about the other countries religious situations and there was of course fun activities also, there was a lot games. One of the most interesting parts of the youth exchange was the different countries cultural evenings, where we had the chance to try the national cuisine from other countries and learned so much about their traditons. Also we met with the major of Montone and a priest from one of close towns. We recommend everyone to take part of a Youth Exchange and other international projects because it will give a lot of experince, courage to speak in different languages and a lot of new acquaintences and friends from all over Europe/World.
The training " Technology for creative thinking" was organized by CROSS CULTURE INTERNATIONAL FOUNDATION CCIF with the support of Malta National Agency (NA) between 18-27 October 2017. The training was designed as a process of informal learning and peer education using participants who work with young people, have experience in the fields of youth work, youth arts and international cooperation. Participants from Malta, Russian Federation, Moldova (Republic of), Estonia, Armenia, Ukraine, Italy and Germany had an active input in sharing knowledge and experience, and learned new skills in and surrounding the dramatic arts and inter-cultural youth work, from the trainers and each other. This active participation encouraged ownership of the learning, motivation and commitment to working together, building effective international working relationships, making the training an exercise in best practice.
The organizers were focused on the individual creative development of each participant and sharing such inter-cultural competences as appreciative inquiry, open minded personality, respect and trust, mutual understanding and team work. Through cultural relationships they generated opportunities for individuals to fulfill their potential and foster the co-operation that contributes to a stable world.
Using theatrical arts within the Erasmus+ Program, was a very valuable tool for developing inter-cultural learning, cooperation, and quality projects in the youth field among all the regions concerned. After the project, we created inter-cultural youth projects and networks with the various participant organizations within Europe, Eastern Europe and Caucasus.
We also included unemployed young people and youth from socially disadvantaged backgrounds.
Youth get to know further the awareness and the knowledge of topics concerning theatrical art, improve competencies, acquaintanceships and abilities, which are necessary to work on long-term projects.
With open space, technology participants shared knowledge and experience, and learned new skills in and surrounding the dramatic arts and inter-cultural youth work. This active participation encouraged ownership of the learning, motivation and commitment to working together, building effective international working relationships, making the training an exercise in best practice. Participants that participated in our training course " Technology for creative thinking" from Russia, Moldova and Estonia organized national events with youth on the topic of the training course. They reached different target groups, especially young people with fewer opportunities as well minorities, the ones who are not the most active and to whom it’s hard to reach (as there are so many active young people). Participants also used the techniques required at our training course " Technology for creative thinking" at other international training activities from different European corners – they exchanged experiences between them (for example how to reach young people with less opportunities, how to involve everyone etc).
What is well-being? Thanks to Seiklejate Vennaskond, to Erasmus+ and the European Union, five Estonian women had an opportunity to participate in the youth exchange named the Happit (happy+habits) from 17th to 25th of October in Iasi, a beautiful city in Romania. From Estonia, Poland, Italy and Romania the participants shared life’s pearls and stings, analysed causes and practised healthy activities, such as yoga, hiking and aerobics. Not less important was the karaoke night out, where the group gained local popularity, and the international evening, where everyone danced together in Romanian, Estonian and Polish national rhythm. In the end of the exchange the group shared their positive energy with disabled kids in the local school. It was a challenge at first, but the group handled it very well and the goal was accomplished: kids were active and left with a big smile on their face.
One important ingredient in well-being is to create values. Everything, that was shared in these days, released laughter, warmth, courage and honesty, which all are priceless values. Laugh from the bottom of the heart is the best cure, and if one is warm inside, then no minus degree can push them to apathy. It takes great courage to show light to shadows and to stay honest in doing so. It’s important to understand, that a beautiful crust doesn’t mean anything, if the core is broken. A happy life is not a naive fairytale, it’s a decision and something we all are worthy of.
In the youth exchange everyone opened themselves more and more. The activities and story-telling revealed to everyone something about themselves, which had existed for long and quietly and had eaten their energy. The exchange shaped a perfect example of a well-operating community: people, who want the best for themselves and to each other. So that a refreshing breakfast would welcome each one in the morning and a rich dinner in the evening, everyone had to contribute in it themselves. For that, four-member groups were formed and every group took care of a meal on a specific day. Despite of the lack of sleep or an exhausting day, all the groups took this commitment as a holy, because it was definitely something, that influences the well-being of the community. Let there be said, that every evening all sat together at the table as a family and every dish was praised.
All that happened in these days made things in life more clear in its cultivating nature: this exchange improved knowledge, taught behavior and enriched emotionally.
Read more: http://www.thehappit.eu/
Summary was made by Anna Luther.
From 6th-16th of September there was a training course in Hvari island Croatia called "Matrix of Education"
Estonians enjoyed the project to the fullest. The main topics were quite well-kown about matrix of education but the most important were the methods how we acquired all these new ideas, knowledges we got. There were different creative games or teamworks we haven’t seen before. Besides all of these nationalities enriched all of us we met. We stll both miss the destination of the project, new people we met, great weather, confused and pleasureable conversations and discussions in the meeting hall we had. Need to mention we got free time and breaks moderately, we didn’t have long stressful working days, we spent much time in places of the picturesque nature. We think it was necessary having project longer than 1 week because it didn’t have such annoyingly tight schedule and had time to enjoy all of it. Project manager was very great and humorous but little bit too gentle. We didn’t have much discipline in the last days of the project anymore. Last but not least we appreciate the chance we got to take part of the unforgettable project.
Summary was made by Kirsi Svarts and Martin Kala
We took part in a youth exchange project in 20th-28th of August 2017 called TEAM - short for Together Everyone Achieves More, during which we spent an unforgettable week in the midst of the Slovenian Alps. There were people from seven different European countries: Italy, Malta, Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Slovenia and Estonia. Together we participated in exciting workshops which focused on developing our teamwork skills.
The project took place in a small village between mountains called Jezersko. We stayed at a lovely guesthouse which also supplied as with goods from surrounding farms. We really took advantage of the opportunity to sleep in tents, completely immersed in nature. We went to test out the mountains and conquer their peaks a few times, we also did some orienteering around the village. There were many different animals on the farm: our every morning started with a rooster crowing, a group of goslings trod past our tent and you couldn’t miss the cute, huggable kittens.
The organisers were very committed and you could see how they really enjoyed working on projects like this. Although we spent just a week in the mountains, leaving was difficult nonetheless - the company was extraordinarily cozy. The most thrilling part was sharing experiences with people from other countries and getting to know their cultures. Socializing all day and every day definitely developed our English and through playful teambuilding games other social skills - ones also essential in everyday life. It was definitely a project we will never forget - we just can’t because all the awesome friends we made all over Europe are already waiting for us to visit them again!
We would definetley recommend the projects orginised by the same group, because they’re really professional and nice people!
Summary was made by Andres Käosaar
On the 20th to 27th August the project “Discover the World of Business” took place in a small Slovak town called Zvolen. There were 5 participants from Estonia, Poland, Croatia, Lithuania and Slovakia. A total of 25 people took part of the project, the main purpose of which was to educate young people about entrepreneurship and to share knowledge about doing business in different countries. The program consisted of lectures, group works and practical assignments.
The project had lectures to teach how to start your own business and how to keep it profitable. The participants also asked local people what they think their city needs, they analysed the information and tried to come up with solutions. Participants’ communication and presentation skills were developed a lot, because of many group works and presentations.
The project also had an intercultural night where people introduced their country and gave other participants a chance to understand their culture a little better. Every country provided something from their cuisine and showed videos and pictures of their famous sightseeing objects.
Many educated and active young people took part of the project and it was a chance to make great and valuable connections around Europe. The project gave people a lot of inspiration to start their own businesses.
Summary was made by Marthen-Patrik Kummer
Here are summaries of projects in 2016 with Seiklejate Vennnaskond's partnership