Youth exchange ‘’Sustainable Innovations: Eco-Visionaries of Tomorrow’’
From September 2 to September 9, 2023, in Sutomore, Montenegro, a youth exchange was held with participants gathering from Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, Kosovo*, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Cyprus.
The youth exchange was organized as a part of the Erasmus+ KA2 project “Eco-Entrepreneurship & Circular Economy: On the Path to Sustainable Change”. The project is set in line with the priorities of the Erasmus+ programme. and is based on the need to increase the capacities of 6 youth organizations representing the program to work with the concepts of eco-entrepreneurship and circular economy, to be able to develop competencies of young people as well as young people with fewer opportunities, and to transfer the principles of circular economy in their practices to become more green, sustainable youth organizations ready to face ecological and sustainable challenges of 21st century.
Throughout the exchange, each national team held a unique workshop to encourage the participants to, for example, design customized preservation strategies for regional biodiversity. In addition, the participants developed their skills in spotting greenwashing enterprises, came up with creative green alternatives, and transformed garbage into artwork. The development of cross-border and intercultural collaboration skills through various team-building activities and team challenges was another significant aspect of the youth exchange. The participants were able to socialize and form stronger connections earlier thanks to a range of team-building exercises and energizers. Additionally, a trip to the Skadar Lake National Park was planned. Finally, a peer-to-peer board game prototype that had been created beforehand by one of the participants to solve regional ecological issues was evaluated and developed further.
To get more insights about this youth exchange, the project’s booklet here.
Feedback from participants
Loukia from Cyprus: “This project had an amazing impact on my life. It gave me different perspectives on how companies and each individual should be more conscious in our daily lives to protect our environment. I also met beautiful people who enriched the project.”
Veronika from North Macedonia: “This project has been great! I’ve met a lot of cool people, and everyone has been so welcoming and open. We talked about ecology and had a lot of fun while doing so. The workshops were really fun and informative, meaning I’ve learned a lot of new things and widened my perspectives.”
Veron from Kosovo*: “Even though I have been in many Erasmus+ Projects, I think this topic is something that everybody should be aware of. I am a very eco-friendly person and in this youth exchange I learned more about how I can earn money and not destroy nature.”
Opportunities with Erasmus+
Erasmus+ projects like this youth exchange present an opportunity for the participants to travel abroad, network, and gain practical experience in various fields. Thereby, the participants learn new skills or strengthen existing ones, which empowers their personal and professional development. The mobility programmes in particular aim to enable cultural exchange and strengthen intercultural cooperation. Within the scope of training courses or youth exchanges, participants can broaden not only their own horizons but also those of other participants.
Author: Kira Prettin