Programme & action: ERASMUS+ programme, Key Action 1 – youth exchange
Venue: Hatay, Turkey
Dates: 17-24 November 2014
Participants: David Ježek, Dominik Novotný, Michal Dovrtěl, Adam Ohřál, Martina Školoudová, Lucie Maturová, Kateřina Baudyšová
Participating countries: Turkey, Czech Republic, Greece, Poland, Romania
Please watch the project video.
I, You, We are IN! was a project in Hatay, Turkey that I took part in. I’m really glad I could participate on such a great project. Thank to this youth exchange I have a lot of new friends from Turkey, Greece, Poland and the Czech republic, as well as plenty of nice memories and valuable experience.
The topic was social inclusion. Now I see I hadn’t realized the importance of this theme before. We were discussing many aspects and barriers that lead to exclusion from the society, such as color of skin, religion, nationality, property or language barriers. We also did several workshops and games on this topic. One of the games was really eye-opening for me. I was told to join a group of discussing people, get the topic of their conversation and join it. So I sat to them, realized they were talking about religion tolerance and I wanted to join their discussion. But anything I said, they didn’t listen to. They didn’t even look at me. Ignoring me completely. Whatever I did, I felt like I didn’t even exist. Later I found out it was their assignment of the game to make me feel social excluded. In that moment I really realized what social exclusion is. Suddenly I knew how those people feel. It was the strongest and the most eye-opening moment for me. Since then I know how big problem social exclusion is, how unfair it is and what it can lead to. It made me think in another way and look at people around me from another point of view. Therefore I think the aim of the project was fulfilled perfectly.
The main organizers Canan and Piran did a great job. The program was prepared very well, we also made a trip to see the city, bazaar, sea coast and an old graveyard of ancient kings, which I liked a lot. Moreover, they even arranged a meeting with the major of the Hatay city. It was a great experience for us to discuss the social problems such as level of education or Syria and Iraq immigrants in Turkey with local politicians.
All people I’ve met there were very friendly, the entire project went well without stress or any negative feelings. I’ve also learnt a few words in Turkish, Polish and Greek. During the national evenings every group showed the others something about their own country, culture, local foods or drinks.
I’m really glad I could escape from rainy and cold November Prague to a sunny and friendly place in south Turkey to meet all the nice people, learn and taste a lot of new things and have a great time.
I miss you, guys!