These objectives were defined during the 70th General Assembly of the UN in September 2015 in New York by Heads of State, government leaders, high-ranking representatives of the United Nations and civil society entities. The Objectives constitute an ambitious and universal agenda for sustainable development, "of people, by people and for people".
The name of the exchange is: "Sustainable development goals: Make them happen!" that will take place in Oeiras, Portugal from 3rd to 16th of July 2018. The purpose of the visit that we did, is that the leaders know, in advance, everything, to have an exchange that works excellently. Something that I appreciate because I've been a leader in other exchanges and I have not had the opportunity of this prior preparation. Which I recommend and I think always, it should be like this, if you want to make the activity really work well and be a success. Because, what is the use of all this if young people are not happy, if the selected profiles believe that they are going "on vacation" instead of being aware of what a cultural exchange entails (flexibility, respect, tolerance, ...) ) and actively participation? What good is it if the activities are not adequate or are not prepared with enough time to explain and execute them correctly?
In these days the leaders together, we define the activities, the schedules, which country will be responsible for organizing what,... It was an opportunity to learn more about us, the profiles of the young people that each organization will select, the program, the conditions and characteristics of the spaces where we will stay and perform the activities.
This exchange is part of the Erasmus + program, funded by the European Commission. We will be a total of 46 young people from different European countries such as: Portugal, Estonia, Bulgaria, Spain, Greece and Romania.
During this period, young people will participate in various non-formal learning activities related to the diversity of Europe, where we hope to highlight the cultural similarities and differences of each country and the richness that each one contributes to the construction of European identity.
We hope in this way to help break the existing stereotypes in relation to each of the countries and contribute to the development of a more inclusive Europe. We are all responsible for active citizenship and it is important to help young people to reflect on this.
Some of the activities are: volunteering, recycling, beach cleaning, group work, intercultural nights, cultural visits and sports, among others. We will be six participants and one youth leader per country. We will prepare a group work entitled "Why do I need to act?", A movie night to debate the theme, reflect on the Youthpass certificate and make presentations about sports and social inclusion, share our cultures, traditions, customs and typical gastronomy.
At the end of the youth exchange we hope that young people will become more aware of our role in society and the importance of intercultural dialogue to achieve a more inclusive Europe. We also hope that this is the beginning of several individual and group projects in our community.
The associations of each country that participate in this activity are:
Balkan Kids, Bulgaria
Pro Atlantic, Portugal
About the Youth Exchanges:
The EU funds youth exchanges which give young people the chance to experience another country and work together in a team. It's an opportunity to gain skills in areas such as project management and to improve your foreign language proficiency. Youth exchanges take place outside the school environment and offer a structured programme (eg with a mix of workshops, exercises, debates and role play).
Youth exchanges enable young people to discover new cultures and friends, develop new competences, and better appreciate values like solidarity and democracy.
The learning process is based on non-formal education and involves at least two organisations (sending and receiving) from different countries within or outside the EU.
About Erasmus +:
Erasmus+ is the EU's new programme for boosting skills and employability through education, training, youth, and sport.
Between 2014-2020 the programme will provide opportunities for over 4 million Europeans to study, train, gain work experience and volunteer abroad.
Funding for youth activities under Erasmus+ aims to improve the key competences, skills and employability of young people, promote young people's social inclusion and well-being, and foster improvements in youth work and youth policy at local, national and international level.