Youth Exchange 'Diversity'

When: 26-31 May 2012

Where: Tsaghkadzor, Armenia

Who: Federation of Youth Clubs of Armenia and Youth and Environment Europe

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Activity type: Youth Exchange

Contact person: Adriana Harnuskova This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Nazineh Khalafyan This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Project description:

During the youth exchange we tried to share experience and raise awareness on different types of diversity (cultural, social, religious and biological) pointing out that the diversity is an integral part of our everyday lives. Through non-formal education and interactive discussions tolerance was raised
among participants regarding different religions, different perceptions of social, cultural diversities. Also many discussions about biodiversity and environmental protection were held.

The main goal of the project 'Diversity' was to share experience and raise awareness on different types of diversity within the international group of young people. By these aims we wanted to contribute to fight against racism, xenophobia, prejudices, stereotypes and all kinds of discrimination. For all people and especially the youth it is important to realize that we live in a diverse society and things that differ us are not obstacles, but on the contrary advantages. However, in nowadays world is unfortunately often vice versa. Therefore it is important to learn from each other about differences and similarities of cultures, religions and social groups and do not forget to consider also the diversity in our environment. By introducing different types of diversity we wanted to point out, that the diversity is an integral part of our everyday lives. The aim is not to study only one particular topic, but focus on some aspects of each diversity type and give inspiration what to think about more.

Aim:

To develop intercultural dialog and tolerance among participants in the field of cultural, social, religious and other type of diversity.

Objectives:

  • To share information and knowledge about different social groups, cultures, and religions among groups of young people from different countries with different social/cultural/religious background
  • To discover biological diversity in our environment and its interaction with people
  • To share experience and examples of good and bad practices by methods of non-formal educationand learning from each other
  • To reflect how diversity and discrimination of particular groups negatively affect our lives (with specific focus on youth unemployment), thinking about possible solutions
  • To develop networking and planning activities for the future

Impressions from the project:

'During the Youth Exchange DIVERSITY the participants discussed about religious diversity, its pros and cons, also brought their own examples, as there was a real religious diversity among the pax. Some youngsters had some stereotypes broken in their minds, some are still digesting the discussions. But overall, some harmony was being felt at a later stage. Hopefully in this regard as well the youth exchange will serve one of its key aims.
The youth exchange also spoke about biodiversity during which hot and intensive discussions were conducted especially in the area of nuclear power stations and solar energy. They introduced the privileges and disadvantages of both ways of getting energy, about their further building and/or development and the opposite impact of those power stations.

On the whole, the participants learned a lot from each other both in the sense of knowledge and on being more tolerant towards different kinds of diversities via intercultural dialog.'
Nazineh Khalafyan, FYCA, Armenia, organiser

'It was a very useful experience being part of Youth Exchange "Diversity". This is because diversity is something we deal each day, it is part of us and we are part of it and being aware of it, appreciating it, discussing its advantages and disadvantages and so on, we make the place where we live a better one. Also Armenia was a great choice!'
Anduela Kaja, EDEN Center, Albania

'Exchange was extremely interesting and useful for me. I found many useful contacts and acquaintances for myself and for my organization. Gained invaluable experience in dealing with various issues that are present in my area. Opened new outlets in many situations of concern to the Ukrainian people. But for me life divided into 2 parts: the exchange of "diversity" and after. I was impressed by the way what was discussed. Thank you for this opportunity.'
Svitlana Yarova, MELP, Ukraine

'Beside being amazed by Armenian capital Yerevan and its countryside I had wonderful time meeting unique people and their worldviews. The most striking finding from my perspective is understanding that peace and friendly relations with your neighbour states is nothing effortless or normal. Social diversity may have its price and in the case of Armenia it can mean tense relation with other nations. It has led me to full appreciation of the European Union project and making myself aware that I spent whole my life embraced by peaceful environment.'
Michal Sindelar, YEE, Czech Republic

'I have to say, that it was perfect experience for me, to get to know new cultures, social aspects, religions and biodiversity. I am psychologist, so one of the most important aspect of this project was to get to know persons from other countries and their minds. I got recognized that we are not so different. That was really useful for me, to get to know people and their habits and their culture of thinking. I would like to say, that project was perfectly organized and coordinators was heplful and very kind.'
Dagmar Mistikova, YEE, Czech Republic

Agenda

Agenda of the youth exchange

Participating organisations:

  • Federation of Youth Clubs of Armenia, Armenia
  • Youth and Environment Europe, Czech Republic
  • Georgia Youth Eco-movement, Georgia
  • EDEN Center, Albania
  • Fältbiologerna, Sweden
  • Youth Environmental League of Prydnyprovya, Ukraine

Photogallery:

Photogallery from the youth exchange


Funders:

The project is supported by the European Youth Foundation - the Council of Europe.

2012 - 40th anniversary of the European Youth Foundation.

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