Virtual Diplomacy Ambassadors – Istanbul


ERASMUS+, Key action 1: Youth exchange 

Venue: Istanbul, Turkey

Dates: 17 June —27 June 2023

Czech team: 6 participants + 2 group leaders

Please read the info-pack.

Hosting organisation: Divan Research and Education Association

Project report:

From June 17th to June 27th, I had the privilege of participating in the “Virtual Diplomacy Ambassadors” youth exchange project organized by the DIVAN Research and Education Association in Turkey. The project brought together 45 participants from Serbia, North Macedonia, the Czech Republic, and Turkey.

Our hotel was located about a hundred meters from the Galata tower in the absolute city center. We stayed in rooms, with groups of two or three people. The hotel had a restaurant where we ate and lounge.

We travelled to Istanbul from Vienna and Prague. Upon arrival, we joined the other participants for the 10-day program, starting at 10 a.m. and concluding at 2 p.m. each day. The program offered engaging activities, workshops, and discussions focused on digital diplomacy and peace building, providing valuable insights into the potential of technology in fostering peace and diplomacy. The cultural night gave us an opportunity to learn about different countries cultures through presentations, traditional food tasting and cultural dances.

After the program sessions, we were able to explore the city and experience its culture through city hunt games. Istanbul, with its rich history and captivating architecture, provided a perfect background for our cultural immersion. We marveled at iconic landmarks such as the Hagia Sophia and the Grand Bazaar, experiencing the unique blend of tradition and modernity that the capital of Turkey offers.

During our free day, we embarked on a memorable trip to Leibilinda Island, located near the Istanbul coast. We reached the island by ferry, enjoying the scenic journey. Some of us spent the day relaxing on the beach, soaking up the sun and swimming in the crystal- clear waters. Others took advantage of the opportunity to explore local bazaars for shopping and discovering Turkish delicacies.

As the project concluded, we had the chance to showcase our collaborative work. In the UNO simulation, we presented diverse countries perspectives on the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Working in groups, we analyzed the complexities of the situation and proposed resolutions to address the ongoing tensions. This exercise enhanced our public speaking skills and deepened our understanding of the geopolitical dynamics involved, reinforcing our commitment to promoting peace, understanding, and positive change.

My participation in the “Virtual Diplomacy Ambassadors” project in Turkey was an incredible journey of personal growth and intercultural exchange. I formed lasting connections with participants from different countries and expanded my knowledge of

different cultures and peace building. I highly recommend participating in such projects and I am grateful for the preparation and program provided by DIVAN Association. (Daniel Giera)

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