What did you want to achieve by implementing the project? What were the objectives of your project?
The concept of the activities was based on the participants needs and met the objectives of the project. The participants managed to improve the level of 8 key competences and skills and got the possibility to learn about outdoor games from Poland and Hungary. The project mobilities included playing together in an international environment, behaving responsible towards the environment applying “leave no trace” principle whenever cooking, eating and having outdoor and indoor activities. The participants developed the self-sustainable attitude by working together with people who they met for the first time, communicating in non-verbal ways, working together, being responsible of the one another’s safeness, applying being active principle in our daily life.
„We improved our knowledge about national outdoor games and by debating upon the importance of sport and outdoor activities in daily life, by sharing games and ideas and by being ”experts” ourselves. Moreover, we passed the information further on an active lifestyle by open to public activities: outdoor games and flash mob as coming from young active people these messages had more chances to reach the ears and hearts of the public. In this way we reached our project objective: Promoting an active lifestyle among young people and citizens of Wetlina and having a strong positive impact upon the people participating in our activities. Just the fact we were visible during our hiking routes having a great impact upon the public regarding the importance of practicing sport in general.”
The intercultural dialogue was understood and practiced during the workshops, treasure hunt, cooking together with the group from 2 countries. Participants felt and analysed diversity, understood better where prejudices come from and broke some of them.
What activities did you implement? What is the number and profile of the participants involved?
„Start your day with HIKE TODAY!” project was based on an Advanced Planning Visit to the main event and the Youth Exchange. Both of the activities were organized in Wetlina.
During the youth exchange we had getting to know each other games and some icebreakers, introduction to Erasmus+ programme and Youthpass certificate. The youngsters exchanged ideas for outdoor games and played some of them as well as had a debate about importance of being active. They found out more about their opinions and learnt from other’s experiences. This helped them to create materials necessary for the first project guide. The youth exchange was full of hiking activities (Połonina Caryńska, Tarnica). It was a big challenge for most of them but at the end of the day they were happy of the team’s success. They understood the power of the team work (while being supportive for their colleagues). They experienced that the victory tastes better when celebrating together. The participants also promoted outdoor games and encouraged other hikers to join them. The participants had a chance to get to know more about the regional heritage (session about culture and ecology). The youngsters explored more Wetlina and “mountain” culture during the Treasure Hunt. It was a good opportunity for a direct contact with locals. Later, they focused on common history and cultural similarities as a part of intercultural learning. The youngsters prepared flash mob – its main message was connected to active lifestyle. It motivated the youngsters to not only learn but also share the knowledge and have an impact on the local society. At the end of each day there was a time for reflection which helped the participants to understand their learning outcomes. Also each “after dinner” activities resulted in intercultural exchange.
There were 4 participants that took part in the APV (team leader and one participant from each project country) and 18 participants (one team leader plus 8 participants from each country) that participated in the youth exchange. The participants were young people interested in improving the health knowledge, intercultural awareness and physical condition. Some of the participants knew each other from school. The rest of the participants were their friends, volunteers from the organizations that showed the interest and willingness to participate in the application creation and project implementation process. The participants were aged from 16-25 years old. 10 people were disadvantaged young people: 7 from rural areas and 3 participants whose economic situation was/is difficult. Some of the participants had never participated in any youth exchange before.
The team leaders were youth workers. They had been involved in the youth work done by the NGOs in their region. They had already participated in the youth exchanges before and also had a chance to be or observe team leaders. They stayed in touch with their team members and were being described by the youngsters as good mediators with strong empathetic skills. Their English knowledge was on a high level – thanks to this they were able to support their team member with some translations.
What were the results and impact of your project?
During the intercultural activities, traditional food sharing, dances, playing games and sports together with people from other countries, different ethnic groups, rural youth, all the group was challenged to respect differences, embrace some of them and enrich their own cultural identity. Therefore “ Guide of non-formal outdoor education activities” was achieved during these international teams having different tasks in the project and trusting, working and sharing ideas together. The used methods also contributed to achieving the objectives because the young participants and their leaders discovered together in a framework of non-formal learning, which are the positive effects of active lifestyle and active participation upon young people’s personal and professional development. The impact that we had on the local community refers to the fact that those who were informed about our project’s objectives and activities, understood the flash-mob message, benefited the disseminated results became more aware of importance of sports and outdoor activities; realized the importance of an active and balanced lifestyle; gained more confidence in the power of youth action and their creativity, active role and citizenship; became more respectful and accepting towards other young people of other ethnicities. As a broaden result of our project the local communities became more aware of the importance of keeping and promoting own cultural values, respecting and applying tolerance and social cohesion among each other and respecting the cultural diversity (planned/achieved in the objectives) and as a future effect of all these new competences developed inside the project, the citizens (parents, teachers, local authorities) will respect other groups of people from outside the country or people who are just different.