High Five for Eco Life is the title of another youth exchange under the Erasmus + program, which took place in the period 19 – 26 November
in the village of Mindya in Veliko Tarnovo and gathered a total of 19 in number from the countries of Bulgaria, Romania and Portugal. The project aimed to explore and raise awareness of ecological art among young people and to strengthen the pan-European network in the field of ecology and forest fire prevention.
The week-long project tried to achieve the following goals, which have been a priority of the host organization in recent years:
- Exploring the concept of environmental art and the creative possibilities it offers to young people;
- Sharing knowledge and information with each other about environmental challenges in our countries and finding their solution;
- Promote the 4Rs: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Recover;
- Encouraging smart environmental behavior to avoid forest fires;
- Creating environmental art;
- Raising awareness of the Erasmus+ program among young people.
All these goals we sought to achieve through the means of non-formal learning and campaigns to increase awareness and impact, leading to changed and more sustainable behavior in our multicultural communities, the organizers of the training also shared.
During the exchange, two brochures were produced by the participants, which were printed and distributed in the village, in the guest house, the local club, and remained as an archive for future projects of the host organization that are yet to be implemented in the region. They were also shared as PDF files online on the organizations’ Facebook pages, as well as on the new volunteer-run site on environmental topics and sustainable lifestyle mindya-community.org, which will be developed and maintained by youth, volunteers and participants. in various projects in Mindya Village and Mindya Community Eco Center.
The organizers also shared one of the actions with a future footprint made during the exchange, namely afforestation organized in addition to the main activities. Each participant planted at least one tree of the linden species – 2, cypress – 5, red oak – 1, thuja – 7, birch – 7. The place where the afforestation is organized in the future will be used by the host organization to organize events and cultural activities (a stage will be built), to carry out environmental and volunteer projects, youth activities, local events.