Social Exclusion Fighters — Poland


Termín konání: 8-16 November 2019

Místo konání: Wierzchosławice (near Krakow), Poland

 Programme & action: ERASMUS+, Key Action 1: Youth exchange

Venue: Wierzchosławice (near Krakow), Poland

Dates: 8-16 November 2019

Participants: Vladimír Škuta, Petr Kurka, Martin Vodehnal, Veronika Adamová

Group leader: Jan Hřivna

Host organisation: Nowe Inspiracje 

Participating countries: Lithuania, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, Bulgaria

Please read the infopack.

Project report “Social Exclusion Fighters”

This project took place in Wierzchoslawice near Krakov in Poland and even closer to the city of Tarnow. The project was very well organised by the young married couple Mateusz and Joanna with the help of Joanna’s sister, Magda.

They made absolutely perfect team. I had participated on several Erasmus+ projects before but I had never participated on a project which would have been led that perfectly as this one. Usually, on these projects people just sit in one room and talk, present, draw something etc. However, this project was a bit different.

Apart from usual things the organizers prepared many workshops and interesting activities for us. So, we had a chance to talk to kids from local school and cooperated with them on the task when we were supposed to invent moto that should encourage people fight social exclusion. It was surprising how these rather small kids took initiative and had no fear to present the results of our work in front of the others. Moreover, in good English. Another day we visited the local center for kids with either mental or physical disabilities. There we watched really nice dancing performance the kids prepared for us and then social workers from the center showed us how they treat kids and what methods they used to fight disabilities these kids had.

The center was quite modern involving for instance a paddock for horses, special room for treating autistic kids or assistant dog for kids with sight disorders. As I mentioned Krakov and Tarnow, there was one afternoon reserved for the trip to Tarnow and a whole day for Krakov visit. Unfortunately, the afternoon we could have visited Tarnow was quite gloomy. So, not many of us went there. However, almost all of us went on trip to Krakov. In Krakov we visited a local university to meet a professor of social science and collectively discuss the problem of ageism. After this lesson we had a time to explore Krakov on our own. Some of us went to Wavel castle, I took a walk to explore cozy Krakov cafés, bars and magical streets in the old city. It is for sure that this trip was the highlight of the whole exchange. In other days we skyped Polish adventurous traveler Kevin who was right then in Cyprus and shared with us his experience from the refugee center and who also said some words about political situation in Cyprus.

Then there was the Oxford debate on one day which I personally got involved as a speaker. The main goal of it was to discuss a controversial topic and defend an opinion from the people with an opposite opinion. Although this triggered some emotion it was good opportunity to practice public speaking and build some confidence. Of course, I could not forget about international nights which were amazing and we had lots of fun together.

Overall, this project was excellent. Not only many people found new friend, it was also very educational project. We discussed many deep topics and even though we did not resolve the issue of social exclusion we all are now more aware of it! 

 Jan Hřivna

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