The first question that comes to your mind when you're going to an international youth exchange is "who are the people I'm going to meet?". The second one being "do I have my wallet, tickets and ID?". What ever you do, the people you're doing it with are what shapes your experience. The Slovak team consisted of Radka, Mária, Eva, Peter and Pavol. Three people being newbies, and one an experienced leader with more than 15 exchanges behind his belt, what just goes to show that it's worth it. Another proof is that despite the distance and time between us, everyone from the exchange keeps in touch until this day.
Our main motivation for the project was to get to know new people and learn as much as possible. And that´s what we did. The topic was ecology. We learned about sustainability, bio-farms, trash art, fair trade and environmental problems faced by European countries as well as the global climate crisis. In groups with our new friends, we searched for answers and solutions to these problems. By doing so, we have also learned to improve our English, clearly formulate our ideas and opinions, give arguments, but most importantly, listen and learn from our peers. One would think it a challenge, when different people from all over Europe meet to present their problems and solutions, but it has proven to be a great affair. Being in the company of like minded people discussing serious topics as well as "favourite supermarkets in Greece" is an experience of a lifetime. Our accommodation was a lovely little cottage and tents near the town of Litija. We were all a little worried about the weather, but everything was taken care of.
There's no better feeling than waking up to see the lush forests of Slovenia while being surrounded by great people. And of course the breakfast.Each morning we started the
day with a little energiser to get the blood flowing. Followed by a series of
activities aimed to get to know each other and the topic of ecology.
Besides that, we did fun activities like trekking, scavenger hunt, volleyball and loads of dancing. One day we had a field trip to an eco herb farm.
We have enjoyed our stay so much, that before we realised, it was coming to an end. We spend our last day in Ljubljana. Our awesome facilitators have arranged for us an interesting visit to a fair trade shop where a kind lady told us all about this fairly new concept and answered all our curious questions.
We've enjoyed a guided tour of the beautiful city of Ljubljana and with that our stay was coming to an end. One last celebration and "haide" to sleep. We parted with a few tears and promises of seeing each other again. And of course with loads of great memories, new friends and an unforgettable experience like no other.
We can only thank the lovely people from the KLIŠE club, organisation Youth for Equality, Erasmus+ and of course the European Union who have made this all possible.
Radka, Mária, Eva, Peter and Pavol