Let's go abroad - reloaded 2
Start date: 04 May 2015,
End date: 04 Nov 2015
The project Let's go abroad - reloaded 2 involved 7 volunteers between 18 and 23 years old, from the volunteer orientation programme in Luxemburg. The volunteers participated in the summer of 2015 in a 4 week long EVS in a city of their choice, the options being: Berlin - Germany, Vienna - Austria.
According to their preferences the volunteers were grouped in the project and land of their choice. The projects were designed to be interdisciplinary having had the following areas: administration, assisting tasks, handcrafts / artistic work, gardening and ecology, in the following host-organisations: FEZ-Berlin; Grenzenlos-Vienna
The project in FEZ-Berlin was separated into 3 departments:
1. Office work and project organisation: it involved researching and developing an educational project (the Europe-Graffiti Workshop), to be conducted with children during a bigger Project in FEZ called "Fezitty, the capital of children"
2. Creative handy work in the Event-design department: it involved creating requisites, scenery and props for the Fezitty project as well as helping the first team with the Graffiti-design part.
3. Gardening and ecology department: this project involved designing and building a raised bed for plants for the center for ecology in FEZ-Berlin.
The volunteers were accommodated in a shared flat (4) and with a hosting family (1).
The project in Grenzenlos, Vienna involved:
- Office work, administration and Media publications support: updating participants lists, helping with events and creating a video feature.
The activities were conceived as group activities to help have a support system and adapt easier in a new environment. The volunteers were prepared for their upcoming service in a 3-step Pre-Departure-Training and a 2-day On-Arrival-Training (FEZ) and a half-day On-Arrival-Training (Grenzenlos). On a regularly basis they had supervision and evaluation sessions to reflect the learning outcomes and to develop a consciousness of their strengths and resources. Towards the end of the volunteer service the Youthpass was written and it was handed to the volunteers in the last "Welcome back event" where the success and learning outcomes were discussed and future steps were planned.
*The educational approach at the center of the activities follows the principles of informal learning through: participative, cooperative and results-oriented learning.
The EVS provided youngsters with fewer opportunities an approachable project which helped them gain confidence, learn key competencies, develop a sense of responsibility and expand their personal and professional perspectives.
The volunteers shared their living and work with other cultures. Living together automatically brought up cultural peculiarities and differences. Everyday work and life among other cultures, experiencing support and willingness to help, deconstructed stereotypes and they observed other cultures in a positive way. This experience had a sustainable influence on their world view and the development of their personality, especially when a close and conscious reflection of themselves took place once a week in the mentoring and evaluation sessions.
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