Climb into Youth Work: Fostering Community and Connection through Outdoor Education and Climbing — Spain


ERASMUS+, Key Action 1: training course for experienced climbers: only for people with climbing experience and the ability to climb on rock 5 level minimum, including lead climbing

Venue: Nigüelas, Spain

Dates: 15—24 March 2023

Participant: Jakub Hlahůlek

Please read the info-pack. 

Hosting organisation: Lernlabor Berlin

Project report:

The project started with our arrival in Malaga on 15.3., where the organizers picked us up at the airport and took us to an older traditional Spanish villa in the Village of Niguelas. We have met18 participants from 6 different countries, different age groups and climbing skills, but they all shared one thing, a passion for climbing and getting to know new cultures.
My biggest fear, that the project will be too theoretical and we will not climb enough, was gone at the very first day, when after checking all the equipment in the morning and repeating the basic theory of climbing, we already after lunch walked to the first rock about half an hour up the hill from the accommodation. Out of a total of 9 days, we ended up climbing 7 days.
The rock was amazing, perfectly secured, it was not brittle or slippery, we had very professional instructors both from the organization and external local climbing instructor Rochio, who was with us all week and gave us not only advice, experience and maps for individual rocks, but she also recommended which routes are the most beautiful, whether they are easier/harder than they seem, and she always climbed with us with a smile on her face.
During the week we met other climbers from her area and the experience was always unforgettable. Either during methodical workshops, e.g. multi-pitch climbing, abseiling, clearing routes, etc., or the opportunity to see old school equipment and listen to her father’s stories about how climbing was done a few decades ago. The highlight was getting to know the second best blind climber in the world, who we not only had the opportunity to observe while climbing, but also subsequently try to climb blindfolded, only according to the instructions of the belaying partner.
During the project we visited about 5 different climbing areas and the views were always spectacular, whether it was the rocks overlooking Granada, with views of the sea, or an incredibly large flat wall that we called “Spanish El-Cap”. There were always plenty of ropes, quick draws and other tools, we only took personal equipment. Thanks to the huge variety of climbers – there were beginners who so far only climbed the artificial wall, but also professionals who climbed for 15 years and setted 7b routes, everyone found their own level and could use the skills of more experienced climbers.
And how was the time spent outside the rocks? Every evening, team from one country cooked us a delicious dinner, after which we fell asleep by the sounds of our participants singing and playing guitar. Some evenings we went to bars in the area or restaurants along the way to taste fresh local seafood.
During the two rest days, we visited natural springs, bathed in the sea, tasted wine at a local winery and held many workshops on topics such as Yoga, Slack-Line, Movement workshop, or how to implement a similar project.
Finally, the organizers took us back to Malaga, where we spent the last two days enjoying sunsets, listening to street performers and tasting Sangria.
I will never forget this climbing project and I can recommend it to all lovers of this sport and Erasmus+ itself.
Jakub Hlahůlek

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