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Between the 18th and 25th of May, we organized our latest Youth Exchange, the Youth Exchange on Disabilities, which could not have been possible without the help of the Erasmus+ program. The first day was all about getting to know each other, the town, and the Erasmus+ program. Of course, our participants were from all around the world, to be more exact, Turkey, Greece, Poland, Italy, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, and Romania.  

On the second day, it was time to learn. We organized ourselves into smaller groups, and we began the Word Café. During this activity, our participants had a chance to share their knowledge and experiences related to the topic. After our discussion and the Word Café, we had a guest, Filipov-Soó Zsuzsa, from the Három Galamb association, who shared her experiences about taking care and working with disabled people, and what should we take into consideration when organizing activities for them.  


Throughout the following days, our participants had a chance to learn a lot about deaf culture. Our guests Remus Ilisie, who is a deaf artist from Oradea, and Lavinia Chițu, who is a hearing child of deaf adults (CODA), talked a lot about events organized for deaf people, usually organized by themselves. Also, they were kind enough to teach us some basic sign language, such as the ABC and common phrases.  


The weekend we tried to make sure the program was light but still taught a lot to the participants. We watched the movie CODA, which focuses on the child of deaf parents, and her story of how she managed to make her dreams come true. The movie won multiple awards including Academic Awards’ Best Picture and Script. It was remarkably interesting, especially, since our guest Lavinia Chițu, who is also a CODA herself, has a terribly similar story growing up. Afterward, Remus Ilișie continued with teaching the basics of sign language and talked a bit more about his culture. On Sunday, the participants discovered a bit more about our culture, since they had a chance to visit the Bethlen castle at Criș and the medieval fortress of Sighișoara. 

On Monday, we tried our best to play something resembling football, Goggle Football. Our participants experienced how it is when their vision is limited. They realized quite quickly, how hard is it to even walk in a straight line, let alone do anything else. After the amazing football match we had, we started working on our program ideas for special needs people, since we had the opportunity to visit the Három Galamb association for a day and work with the young adults with special needs there.  


The programs that were planned by the participants soon became reality. We started with dancing, singing, and playing child games together with our special guests. Afterward, we organized ourselves into smaller groups and set up our stations to start the activities. Outside, there was a puppet-show and gardening. Inside we had drawing, painting, gluing, and macaroni art. And of course, such a special day deserves a special meal. We made a big batch of goulash, which was delicious. 

On the last day of the youth exchange, we still managed to learn a bit about the local community and its history in the Molnár István Museum. Taking advantage of the clear weather, we sat down on the green grass and talked about the Youthpass and what our participants learned during their stay in our town. The rest of the day focused on wrapping up everything, discussing what happened during the program, what we discussed, and what the participants will take home with them.  


Overall, this was a successful and useful youth exchange. During the program, our participants had a chance to catch a glimpse of a culture that they were not familiar with, the deaf culture. They had a chance to interact and work with disabled people and learn about a topic with such complexity and so many layers. They had a chance to explore and experience things that are hard to come by every day. Because of this, I am convinced there is no individual among our participants who have not learned something during our youth exchange related to disabilities.  

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Our organization hosted the 2nd seminar of „Digitool – Distance Guidance and Innovation” project bewteen 07.05.2022 – 10.05.2022. During the seminar we focused on improving different digital tools. The first day was about getting to know each other, then we started to create improvement plans, interactive videos in order to make our tools more attractive and user friendly.

Besides of the hard work, we had the possibility to learn more about the countries and cultures who were present, on day 2 we had an intercultural night. At the same time, participants of the seminar visited the surrounding of our small town, including the famous Sighisoara.

As a conclusion, we could say that our seminar reached its goals, however the work won’t stops here. We are already preparing ourselves and our tools for the next seminar.

The project is funded by Erasmus+, project partners: Solidarity Tracks/ Monopatia Allileggiis (Greece), Associazione Costiera Amalfitana Riserva Biosfera (Italy), Asociatia de Tineri din Ardeal (Romania), project promoter: D’Antilles & D’ailleurs (Martinique, France)

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Ah, there is nothing like the excitement prior to a new project, especially if it’s the first project of our 7-year strategy. After months of planning and organization, there were participants from Italy, Hungary, Spain, Slovakia, France, Croatia, Turkey, and Portugal. But why were they here, in our lovely little town? They participated in our Seminar on Addiction, between 28th of April and 3rd of May.
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At the end of April, two of our team members packed their suitcases and traveled to Portugal, the home of cheap and delicious coffee. We visited a colorful, quiet little town, Águeda, in order to participate in a training course related to non-formal education, what it is, how it works, its benefits, and its downsides.



We started the week with some getting-to-know each other programs since we were many from many different places. We only had a short week to learn a lot of difficult names, but I can confidently say (or at least I hope I can), that we somehow managed. After our first dinner together, it was time to work and learn. The first program of the training was a simulation exercise. I won’t spoil anything for anybody, but I honestly hope everybody has a chance to “play this game” in their life. BUT, I will let you in on a little secret, I learned a lot about our society, values, and even myself. (Apparently, I don’t like to ask for help, unless it’s absolutely necessary.) We closed the program with an evaluation and closed the day with an international snack night.



New day, new experiences, new competencies that could be learned. An interesting and complex trainer’s perk is that he can pull a rabbit (or in our case a balloon dog) out of his hat. After our discussion on how to build and organize a non-formal workshop, then the smaller teams could start to work on their mini-workshops. Each team was given a topic (the EU’s Youth Goals, one/ team. If you are interested, HERE is a bit more information.), that they had to prepare for the others. It’s true, that we didn’t have a whole lot of time to prepare, but teamwork made it work.

When we were ready the next day a whole rollercoaster awaited us. There were good parts, emotionally challenging, morally “problematic” and calming parts. It was a day with mixed feelings and mixed emotions, but it was evident that we learned a lot.

However, every good thing comes to an end. It’s a bittersweet thing to say goodbye to all the new friendships we just built. We learned a lot, but we left with even more questions. This is the never-ending circle of education, the more you know, the more you want to know.

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Our organization, the Youth Association from Transylvania, visited the quiet, lovely little Álora, Spain. We were welcomed by the team of Imagina, our Spanish partner in the project. The purpose of the trip was to attend the third Transnational Meeting of the project named “STEP 1 – the right step to be a volunteer”, funded by the National Agency Erasmus+ Youth in Action, and promoted by Psientífica, from Águeda, Portugal. While there was some time to enjoy the beautiful natural landscape of the area and walk the Caminito del Rey, the main focus was on the business side of the job. We worked on and discussed the following steps of the project, especially the mobility, which will take place in Amarante between 18 and 24 of September 2022, and be hosted by our partner, Casa da Juventude de Amarante. The meeting team was completed by our partners from Poland, Just do it , and Greece, You in Europe. All-in-all, we made great progress, and we are ready to take the next step in the project.

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Projects
The Youth Association from Transylvania is organizing this youth exchange in a little town called Cristuru Secuiesc, the name
of the project is “Let’s stop bullying!”. By participating in this mobility, young people between the ages of 14 and 18 will better understand the phenomenon of bullying, identify what types exist and what it can cause. At the same time, they will be able to identify good practices to manage this phenomenon: what the subjects of bullying should do and how those around them should act in order to support them.
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Between 16-18 November 2021, we organised the second project meeting within the framework of the “Emotional  Management:  Tool to Fight Social Media Dependency” strategic partnership. 18 staff members from the schools, NGOs and municipalities took part in the meeting from Spain, Romania and Portugal. where we reviewed the phases and implementations of the project so far, outlined the difficulties caused by the pandemic situation, discussed the tasks of the remaining period, and set out further deadlines. Among other things, we have finalized the plan for the publications to be produced as the final product of the project and the presentation scenario to be organised at the end of the project.


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Between 8 and 15 November, the job-shadowing-took place in Portugal as part of the project called “Emotional Management: Tool to Fight Social Media Dependency”, which is a strategic partnership. Teachers and youth workers from Romania and Spain participated in the job-shadowing organized in Amarante. Our association was represented by Emőke Király. Read her testimony here.
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The emotional management training in Spain was finally organized between the 2nd and 10th of September, within the framework of the strategic partnership “Emotional Management: Tool to  Fight Social Media Dependency”,  and with this the project was re-started  because it was suspended due to the current pandemic situation. Teachers, youth workers and representatives of mayor’s offices took part in the training. Our NGO was represented by Ágnes Constantinescu a mathematics teacher from Cristuru Secuiesc. Read her testimony below:

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The EU-WISE report entitled “25 Good Practices – empowering young people in the field of sustainable consumption and Fair Trade” is out!

As a reminder, the main aim of the project is to build civic awareness, involve and empower 120 young people with fewer opportunities in groups of 30, from Belgium, Italy, Poland and Romania in promoting responsible consumption and the Sustainable Development Goals, focusing mainly on fair trade and the slow food movement.

Another aim is to increase the acquisition of social and civic competences, understanding of values and fundamental rights by young people. To achieve this, during the implementation, youth will take part in debates, activities, and promotion of new consumption patterns. As initiators of changes, they will also be involved in activities aimed at local communities in the role of organizers.

EU WISE also strives to collect and disseminate good practices supporting the role of young people as active partners in the change and implementation of SDG4, which supports quality education and SDG12, which ensure sustainable production and consumption patterns.

The publication is based on a selection of good practices collected in the respective countries of the EU-WISE project Partners, from Belgium, Italy, Poland and Romania, showing the dynamism and creativity of multiple networks, NGOs, and institutions to attract and inspire young people to become agents of change. The general aim of this publication is to create a common database that will help prepare local pilot actions to empower Youth.

You can read the report and get inspired here. https://bit.ly/3DOt0By

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