Youth Exchange “Zero Waste”, 17-25 November 2019 – Miłkow , Poland
This project took place in a polish village called Miłkow, and was funded by Erasmus+ program. Participants were young people from 5 countries – Poland (Just do it), Romania (ASOCIATIA TINERII 3 D), Serbia (Alijansa Omladinskih Radnika Vranje), Lithuania (Tarptautinis bendradarbiavimo centras) and Turkey (YOUTH SEASON ASSOCIATION), a total of 40 people. During the 7 days, the participants had the chance to exchange their knowledge and experiences concerning the growing problem of waste. The days started with some energizers, and were followed by different types of sessions – some of them were group work, some of them were in the form of debates, workshops etc. The main goals of this projects were to promote a pro-ecological attitude, clever shopping, reusing things, raising ecological awareness and counteracting mindless consumerism. Other than exchanging their own thoughts on these subjects, the participants also found out what are the waste management practices in the other countries and how theirs compares to the others. Young people also had the chance to get creative and reuse the old clothes everybody brought, which had an indie movie-like fashion show as a result.
Some other memorable sessions were collecting garbage in the nearby forest, taking a hike and making cosmetics using simple household products. Each day came to an end with an intercultural evening where each country has shown their traditions – music, clothes, food, dances… This was a great way to get to know other cultures as there were often some quizzes and games involved. The main thing everybody has learned is that, while some countries already started working on the problem of excessive waste, there is still a lot to be done, starting from raising awareness of this problem in our societies. As if all this experience wasn’t enough, each participant has gotten a Youthpass certificate as proof of attendance, a valuable addition to their CVs. The most beautiful thing about this project, however, is that by the end of the week, people have made some wonderful memories and friendships that will last much longer that the project itself.