Start date: May 1, 2015,
End date: Oct 31, 2015
The youth exchange "Happy Lifestyle" was the international youth exchange organized by Life Zone Estonian Youth Union together with partners from Latvia – Youth Leaders Coalition and Lithuania - RJOS „Apvalus stalas“.
Initially youth exchange was designed for and with 21 young people aged 13 to 17 years from Baltic States - Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. To support the learning process 7 youth leaders and support staff were involved. During fundraising campaign more support was achieved and we could invite additional 7 people. Also 5 Life Zone Youth Union volunteers joined the project to help with the managing, implementation and follow up. Overall it was a great experience with possible annual follow up.
The project had several main objectives:
Objective #1: Develop a Healthy Lifestyle
Objective #2: Develop positive values and character
Objective #3: Improve Educational Achievement
In order to achieve objectives, the project was divided into three phases:
Before project: Research on the topic together with youth indifferent countries. After the research leaders decided to have several topics, which were all interconnected and important for happy lifestyle. During the project leaders realised that there is educational lack of information at the level of a healthy lifestyle at the teenagers. Therefore it was very important to develop a better understanding of importance of a healthy and happy lifestyle, understanding of responsible consumerism, recycling and upcycling, self-development and responsibility of personal life and the world around. 70% of preparation was done by young people after the APV, during which leaders agreed to give most of the responsibilities to the group.
During the project leaders had to make sure that the discovered issues would be possible to understand by games and workshops based on active non-formal education methods. Leaders were encouraging young people to take initiative, to organise workshops, evening programmes. 70% of the activities were created by young people with the leaders inspiration and support.
Programme had various activities which covered the range of specified themes, such us educational, awareness raising workshops, joint initiatives, physical activities and cultural understanding events. Each day had equal proportion of educational sessions, active outdoor sessions and evening cultural sessions. Each participant had a diary and special time every evening to fill it based on the personal evaluation of the day. Leaders were supporting this activity every evening.
After the project young people had to promote happy lifestyle techniques, tools within their circles: family, friends, followers on social media. The follow up meeting was organised, taking into consideration all feedback from leaders and young people. Overall feedback was great, young people were very excited to keep in touch with fellow participants, keep the diary after the project, support each other in following happy lifestyle, and think of the next year topics for the similar event.
The project pictures, diary of participants, programme and supporters can be seen on Happy Lifestyle blog www.happylifestylecamp.wordpress.com
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