ERASMUS+, Key Action 1: training course
Venue: Santa Maria da Feira, Portugal
Dates: 17—23 April 2023
Czech team: Michaela Gelnarová, Ivana Mančíková, Jana Peigerová, Martin Zeman
Please read the info-pack.
Oi! Tudo bom? Tudo bem 🙂
From April 17th to April 23rd, I had the privilege of participating in a training course called WORK4INCLUSION – GO DEEP, organized as part of the Erasmus+ program by the Portuguese Red Cross. We stayed in beautiful Santa Maria da Feira, a tiny town known for its rich cultural heritage. The seven-day project was filled with activities aimed at promoting inclusive practices and empowering participants to make a positive difference in their communities. I was excited to be a part of this journey and discover what the program had in store for me.
One of the highlights of the program was the visit to the Porto Association of Cerebral Paralysis (APPC), where we had the opportunity to learn about their work and interact with the members. It was a humbling experience to see the dedication and passion of the staff towards promoting inclusion and providing support to people with disabilities. We also had the chance to participate in sports activities and interact with the members of Amicis, an Association of Friends for an Inclusive Community in Sanguedo. It was heartwarming to see the positive impact they were making in the lives of persons with disabilities.
The program also included hands-on activities that allowed us to actively contribute to the community. One such activity was a natural reserve clean-up, where we collected garbage from along a wooden walk. It was a powerful experience that made us aware of the impact of human actions on the environment and the need for collective efforts to protect our planet.
In addition to the main activities, we also had intercultural nights, where each country represented their culture through food, music, and dance. It was a beautiful celebration of diversity and a unique opportunity to learn about different cultures and traditions from around Europe. While this might be included in the majority of Erasmus+ projects, the Lithuanian night that we’ve seen was the best cultural night in my life!
The WORK4INCLUSION – GO DEEP was a transformative experience for me. It provided me with valuable insights on inclusion, created close bonds with other participants and allowed for a full range of experiences I take home with me. The mix of hands-on activities, visits to organizations, and interactive training sessions made the program engaging and impactful. Moreover, the diverse group of participants from different backgrounds made the experience even more enriching. I am grateful for this opportunity and will carry the lessons learned from this training course with me as I continue to strive for a more inclusive and empowering society in my own community. Here, I’d like to give a GIANT shout out to the organizational team, they were exceptional. They were dedicated, supportive, and ensured that all participants felt included and valued. The program was well-organized allowing us to focus on the learning and networking opportunities.
Last but not least, a big thank you goes to EYCB for organizing, promoting, and sending youth workers to these transformative experiences <3.
For the Czech team, Michaela Gelnarová