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2015-08-27
Polish - Lithuanian youth exchange in Pilica

Polish - Lithuanian youth exchange in Pilica is an educational and cultural exchange project prepared and implemented by The Lithuanian and Polish YMCA in Kurnędz.

The event was held in "Pilica" Camp in Kurnędz, Poland 10th -17th August 2015. The project was funded from the grant obtained from the Polish-Lithuanian Youth Exchange Fund at the Polish Ministry of Education.

24 young people from Sulejow, Poland and from Vilnius decided to come together and exchange their experience at blogging and using social media. In such way the idea of the project was created and called „ #(B)LOG_IN".

Aleksandra Waśko, the project coordinator explained why social media was so exposed in a project, which was run in a scenic place, known for its natural surrounding and normally used for summer holidays. She pointed out that Facebook, Istagram or Twitter play relevant role in the life of young people. For this reason they can be also well used as tools that help to get young people involved in the reality around them.

Increasing proficiency at using social media was one the main goals of the project, and the dominant methodology was learning by doing. For this reason the programme included activities such as workshops on journalism, blogging skills and promotion through social media. At the same time the meeting in the YMCA camping-site was very important for keeping good relationships among the youth of different neighboring nations, whose history had some very challenging periods over history. An important part of the project was a city game addressed to young people. In the game the central character was one of common Lithuanian- Polish monarch, the founder of Jagiellonian Dynasty, important for the common history of both nations.

One of the leaders Iga Strzałka said: "We would like our project to impact us by the skills and knowledge gained during the workshops, but we'd also like to leave something to the local community, especially to children and teenagers. We decided that a city game would be a way of reaching them. The area of the game was the old monastery, where the Polish-Lithuanian ruler had a stop on the way to the medieval battlefield with Teutonic knights in 1410 ". The content of game was worked out by a common Polish-Lithuanian team - no danger of historical misinterpretations!. The clues in the game were taken not only from books, but also from the local people, architecture or pieces of arts. Certainly the use of modern technologies was obvious. The game was a big attraction for all the participants.

And in the evening the young people spend time in a traditional way: socializing around campfire, learning about national traditions and certainly trying national food. That was not as fascinating as Facebook, but also good....!

author: Adam Rychlik, YMCA Europe
source: www.ymcaeurope.com

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