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Volunteering for a Youth Exchange

© Damian Maciag
Knowledge, new experience and friends, best emotions and the greatest time ever - with these words I can describe the 7 days of youth exchange project in Labin, Croatia

The project that gathered 21 participants from three countries: Poland, Croatia and Turkey, but looking at them you would not feel cultural differences as they understood each other like old friends. All 21 participants came to Labin for one and the same aim to have a great time with the group of Alfa Albona and to learn from them as much as possible.         

The topic of the training was “social entrepreneurship”, during all these 7 days Alfa Albona’s group gave whole information about the issue theoretically and at the same time by practical works too. The sessions were formed by slide shows, movies and games. Participants were given different tasks and were divided in to different groups several times, so all of them had opportunity to know each other better in work. All these tasks were provided to improve their creativity, activity, to learn how to solve problems in best way in a short time. They learnt how to make their ideas into business plans, how to become a social entrepreneur and to be a good leader, all these topics were taught by a successful entrepreneur, by the director of Alfa Albona Alen Halilović, who shared his experience and gave them useful advices.  

During the sessions they played a lot of practical games that were connected to their main topic and which helped them improving their skills in the field. From 9 am till 00:00 the whole team had nonstop, after trainings they even did not fill tiredness to walk several kilometers to Rabac, one of the most wonderful places, where participants had chance to go several times and enjoy.. 

During these 7 nights 3 were special, participants had to present their country. So all of us have a great opportunity to eat traditional food from Poland, Turkey and Croatia, to know their culture better and especially traditional dances, every participant tried his/her best to teach each other dances and they succeed. The rest 4 nights they spent in Labin one of the most popular Rock Cafe, where they listened live band.                 

Each participant was exceptional, but some of them were the most exceptional :) In the group there was one Turkish guy who appeared that does not know English, everyone thought that it would be the hardest to communicate with him, but Ahmed appeared one of the most communicative person by using his body, knowledge of German language and the members of his Turkish group as a translators ;). So communication between Ahmed and the group succeeded.! :)  Another most exceptional participant was Mateo, who was sitting on trainings and sleeping, but any time the trainer asked him something he could immediately react on everything and often was smarter than other members of the group :). Such projects are good not only for education and gaining some useful habits or information, but for future relationships too :). From 21 people there were 2 couples from Poland, but after 7 days the number of couples increased and Croatia left I think 4-5 couples, I don’t know the exact number yet but I think that FB will tell me everything soon ;)   

The whole group in one team - it was the main challenge for Alfa Albona, the team tried to make their best to each participant and they succeeded, all of them felt comfortable and happy. 


I was not a participant of the project, but as s volunteer of the organisation I took part in a lot of exercises and learnt a lot. For me it was the first youth exchange project, by listening and watching the sessions I learnt how interesting is communication with different people and discovered that we have a lot in common, with these trainings I became more concentrated, the spirit of Alfa Albona’s team gave me opportunity to think about my own ideas which I hope to become business plans  and finally business, people who attend such sessions have also opportunity to gain great life experience, they live independently, have opportunity to visit new places and relax from everyday life, so Erasmus+ and youth exchanges gives young people great opportunity to join and learn at the same time and take part in such projects. My first experience was great! Looking at the group I wished to be the 22nd participant.


Author: Ruta Datukishvili, Alfa Albona


Published: Mon, 26/05/2014 - 15:26

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