Monday, December 26, 2016

Be yourself, Proud for Youth Training Course - INTERVIEW WITH TURAL ABDULLA AND LIIS RANDMÄE

Name of the project: Be yourself, Proud for Youth
Date: 08.12.2016 - 15.12.2016
Country/City: Ireland, East Clare

What was the main topic of the event?

Tural: The main topic of the project was LGBT youth and youth work with them. The training covered the issues and challenges LGBT youth face in the daily life and how youth organizations can work to reduce these issues.

Liis: The training was about LGBT+ youth. We were discussing the current situation of LGBT+ people in different countries, the main issues that need to be dealt with concerning the topic and tried to find some ways to actually do so.

What was the biggest learning moments on the event for you?

Tural: Actually, there were a lot of such moments, as we used different methods, such as ‘Theatre of Oppressed’ and ‘Genderbread’… sometimes it was too emotional as some of participants were sharing their life stories. Besides that, the training also helped me to revise project-management, as we are planning to organize training in the future.

Liis: I was really inspired by the people there and learned again that no matter how difficult the life can be (because LGBT+ people as well as any other minority can face enormous obstacles in belonging to the society) there is always hope and we should never give up on that.

Do you have any plans to continue active in the field? If yes, what?

Tural: Definitely! I made some contacts and found some partners who are interested in making a new project. With a partner from the Netherlands we plan to organize a training called ‘Out and proud: How to become allies’ focusing on the topic Gender and Sexuality Diversity, Sexual Health and Education & Advocacy for LGBT youth. Depending on time-management and planning, we are thinking to organize this training either in 2017 or 2018.

Liis: In the end of the training course we started working on our own projects so if all goes well I will hopefully help to organize one youth exchange about sexuality and relationships. The other thing I will always carry with me is to remember to be LGBT+ inclusive in each area of my life in order to create more tolerant society.

Would you recommend it to your friends? I yes, why? If not, why not?

Tural:  Not only this training, generally I encourage all youth to get involved in such projects, because non-formal education is really a life-learning process, you learn totally new skills and methodologies, making new friends and cooperation. It broadens your ways of thinking and gives you keys for different doors. It is all about you, if you want to take this chance and use the opportunity for yourself.

Liis: I would recommend it for sure. Going to a European Union funded training course is SO easy in Estonia and can give more than ever expected. Sometimes the most random conversations with people we didn’t even know existed a few days earlier can be the ones that change our lives the most.

More comments or anything else you would like to share? You can add here in your own language, if you want!

Tural: I am really thankful to Youth for Society for giving me this opportunity. It is one of my best experiences ever. I hope I will actively involve and help to make the world to be the better place for all of us. Çox sağ olun! Gələcək bizlərlə (gənclərlə) gələcək! (Translation; Thanks! The future will come with us (with youth)

Liis: I wish everyone merry Christmas and a happy new year, hope 2017 will be the best so far for all!

This Project was financed by European Commission's Erasmus + Programme

Friday, December 9, 2016

EVS: joint venture for fostering social inclusion, active participation and solidarity - VERONIKA JALLAI - 6 MONTHS EVS IN ITALY - English and Russian Article


6 warm and beautiful months, that changed me and my life!

All my life I knew I will go for some long volunteering project one day. However, since I was studying there was no time for that. Until I went to work in Tallinn…

I knew Marco, coordinator of my project, from my first experience with Erasmus. It was 5 years ago in Turkey; we had a great youth exchange with what I was really glad. So, when Marco offered me to go for a half of year to Sicily for volunteering only thing that was stopping me a little bit was my work. However, the dream that was all my life following me and confidence about my coordinator offer did not leave me any chance to refuse.

I didn’t have a lot of expectations, I only whished that there would be an opportunity for me to try myself and make something useful for society. Moreover, Sicily itself was an interesting place for a person from the cold region. In addition, it was interesting to meet very close totally new culture
Preparations for a travel were really in a hurry, but my hosting organization which name is ARCI Strauss is doing very good job. In the Palermo airport I met another participant, girl form Bulgaria, and went together to Mussomeli, our EVS town. Way to Mussomeli is complicated because of transportation problems, but ARCI Strauss director took us from some bus stop and lifted exactly to our big and cosy appeasements…

The first expression was amazing: small medieval town with narrow streets and beautiful mountain view! All the participants and ARCI Strauss workers were so new, but thanks to positive attitude and interesting activities, we got to know each other pretty fast. These people until today make me smile and feel warm inside when I think about them. All in all, during all the project I enjoyed people around me. They helped me, when I was sick or had any other problems or questions; they shared their free time with us and showed Sicily for different sides.

What about my expectations, they were fully satisfied! I felt myself as a part of the city, moreover, the active and useful part of it! We had a lot of tasks that ARCI Strauss gave us to help the local society. Also we had an opportunity to make an initiative. It was never boring and time passed really fast! Now I really hope to see everybody again and just to come back to this charming city, because it became one of my home cities.

I would also like to add, that during the in-arrival and midterm training we met with other volunteers and heard many different feedback about other EVS organizations. Because of that, I could make a conclusion, that I am very lucky with my sending and hosting organizations and I could suggest them to everybody!

6 теплых и незабываемых месяцев, которые изменили меня и мою жизнь

На протяжении всей своей сознательной жизни я горела мечтой поехать когда-нибудь в далёкую страну в качестве волонтера, чтобы познакомиться с местной культурой, познать себя и принести пользу обществу.

К сожалению, все, на что у меня хватило времени – это проект по обмену от Erasmus. Но как раз он и стал для меня ключевым моментом к своей мечте, так как на нем я познакомилась с Марко – координатором.

Когда я наконец закончила университет и приехала работать в Таллинн, Марко, узнав об этом, тут же предложил мне отправиться на 6 месяцев волонтером в Сицилию.
Подготовка к поездке у меня проходила в спешке и хаосе, я не сильно продумала, как доберусь. Однако в аэропорту Палермо мы столкнулись с участницей моего проекта из Болгарии. Она знала все гораздо лучше, так как прочитала информационный пакет, у меня же он был просто ссобо(хотя бы распечатала). Она меня узнала, оказалось, что мы едем вмести в Муссомели, наш городок. Так как транспортное сообщение очень затруднено до Муссомели, организаторы нас не напрягали и встретили на машине возле одной из остановок и довезли до огромных уютных апартаментов Муссомели...

Так как предыдущий проект был просто замечательный, а идея о волонтерстве, жившая давно в голове, не давала покоя, то моя работа отошла на второй план, и я согласилась. К тому же – Сицилия! Мне не терпелось познакомиться с ней и ее культурой как можно ближе!

Первое впечатление я не забуду никогда! Это был невероятно маленький средневековый городок на вершине горы, с которой открывается чудеснейший вид! У нас был огромный балкон с видами на горы, просторные комнаты, большая кухня и замечательные душевые с туалетами…Офис принимающей организации был прямо под нашим жильем, что было очень удобно. Кстати, они никогда не нарушали наше личное пространство, не приходили без предупреждения и вообще относились к нашему дому, как к нашему дому.

Несмотря на то, что мы все были совершенно незнакомы до проекта, мы очень быстро подружились благодаря позитивному настрою и интересным играм и заданиям, которые для нас организовывал ARCI Strauss.

Вообще, об ARCI Strauss, наше принимающей организации, я могу отозваться только с положительной стороны. Они организовывали нам интересные повседневные задачи, давали возможность проявлять инициативу. Мы действительно чувствовали себя частью города Муссомели, причем ее активной и полезной частью. Организаторы проводили с нами свободное время, знакомили с итальянской кухней и культурой в целом, возили в новые места, устраивали походы в горы с пикником и играми. Да и в рабочее время было всегда очень весело и здорово, когда они были с нами. Больше всего мне нравилось работать над созданием парка, писать статьи и делать фоторепортажи, хотя мы также провели много интересных уроков английского языка со школьниками и взрослыми.

6 месяцев это большой срок, они были очень насыщенными и рассказать в двух словах не получится! А вот пролетели они быстро! Сейчас прошел уже 1 месяц с проекта, но я все еще чувствую в себе частичку Муссомели, а также что частичка меня останется навсегда там. Я жду с нетерпеньем возможности побывать там снова и встретиться со всеми!

Вдобавок могу сказать, что этот опыт превзошел все мои ожидания! Я ничуть не жалею, очень довольна и могу порекомендовать как отправляющую, так и принимающую организацию. На всей тренингах, на которых мы встречались с другими волонтерами, я была очень рада, анализируя их отзывы, что у меня такие замечательные организаторы!

This Project was financed by European Commission's Erasmus + Programme

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Mentoring: Act for Change TC - INTERVIEW WITH MADLE TIMM

 Name of the project: Mentoring: Act for Change
Date: 24th to 30th October 2016
Country/City: Armenia, Toros

What was the main topic of the event?

The main topic of the training was the role of EVS mentors. Each day we learned about the responsibilities of mentors, main tasks etc. We had many interactive examples of different situations what can happen with the volunteer and how to solve the problems. The trainers had a lot of tips from the real life to share in order to be a better mentor.   

What were the biggest learning moments on the event for you?

I guess that the biggest learning moments were actually connected with other participants. We had a nice bunch of people from different cultures and backrounds. Everybody shared their own experiences and it was truly interesting to hear and see how different people act and react.

Do you have any plans to continue follow up? If yes, what?

I would like to be a mentor by myself. It seems really an interesting role and there’s no better feeling than seeing that your help really matters for someone.

Would you recommend it to your friends? I yes, why? If not, why not?

Yes I definitely recommend it. Travelling really broadens your mind and if you can connect it with a training and manage to get friends from different countries it’s like an unlimited source afterwards – you can study further from your friend’s experiences while keeping in touch. 

This Project was financed by European Commission's Erasmus + Programme