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Greening Urban Enviroment
Start date: May 1, 2015, End date: Sep 30, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

In big cities alienation of men from nature is a troubling reality in which today’s urban children and young people are being born into. One of the consequences of the alienation of man from nature are global ecological issues we are today facing, as people can truly care only for things they feel strongly connected to. Disconnection from nature leads to diminished quality of life as men are not only products of culture, but primarily in their core beings of nature and in separation from it deepest parts of our self are not being nourished. The "Greening Urban Environment" is short term EVS project planned to take place over a period of two months from May 11th to July 8th 2015 in Zagreb, Croatia. The main objective of this project is to work on reconnecting children and youth to nature in urban environment by (1) introducing and promoting urban gardening in practice among children and youth, and (2) to promoting quality use of free time among youth and adopting of positive set of values that support personal development of young people. Following activities are planned to realize those objectives: 1. Urban gardening with children and youth - starting and maintaining 3 sustainable urban gardens in school yards. 2. Urban terrace gardening with youth - learning how to design and plant sustainable terrace garden 3. Organizing "Urban Garden Party" festival - spreading information on urban gardening among broader public and celebrating project accomplishments 4. Organization of events in Youth Club - organization of quality free time for youth 5. Promotion of mobility and EVS service opportunities among local youth The project will be implemented on several locations in the City of Zagreb and realization of its activities will bring together 10 volunteers from 5 countries (Portugal, Spain, Lithuania, Serbia and Moldova) who will work together in Croatia with our staff, teachers and children from 3 primary school and youth active around Youth Club T.O.Ć. (Transformational & Educational Corner). All methodologies used will promote active participation, learning by doing, non-formal and informal education. The main methods will be: experiential learning, cooperative learning, participatory learning, transfer of expert experience, peer learning, brainstorming, buzz groups, team work, team building and energizers, presentations, case studies, Open Space Technology, evaluations, debates, presentations, individual work, social interaction. Through project implementation we plan to achieve following results: - establishing and maintaining in 3 sustainable urban gardens in cooperation with 3 primary school in Zagreb - starting and developing urbane terrace garden in the city center with volunteers and local youth - organizing "Urban Garden Party" event in June - holding minimum of 10 creative & educative workshops with children on themes urban gardening - organizing minimum of 10 events for young people have been organized in Youth Club T.O.Ć (such as movie nights, civic activism & personal development workshops, intercultural immersion, etc.) - producing minimum of 5 short videos that addressing urban sustainability problems and solutions - holding minimum of 5 presentations about youth mobility and EVS service opportunities for local youth - promoting healthy life styles (growing your own food, adopting vegetarian diet, physical activity in nature, etc.) - promoting and encouraging European values (mobility, cosmopolitanism, human rights, democracy, cooperation, solidarity, mutual understanding, intercultural exchange etc.) - gaining new logistical and organizational skills through active involvement of volunteers in organization of project events - practicing intergeneration exchange and learning (while working together in school gardens) - encouraging community spirit through cooperation between school children, teachers, youth and volunteers - supporting individual development and creative contribution Long term benefits of the project will be reflected in recognizing well being effects that contact with nature has on individual, rise in application of sustainable practices in everyday life, and in increased number of urban gardeners among children, youth and young adults. Project will encourage volunteers and local youth in wiser use of their free time in ways that will be fun but at the same time support their personal development. They will be inspired to take part in other mobility projects, increasing their levels of intercultural understanding, European awareness and cosmopolitan spirit.

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