Germany // Youth Exchange “Me. You. The world.” in Berne

From 2-12 of August 2016 in the small town of Berne which is located near Bremen in the North of Germany, 44 young people between 16-25 years old met to reconnect with the nature.

They went a long way from Macedonia, Croatia, Reunion island and Spain, and they left behind their electronics, laptops and play stations and came to the natural protected area on Julusplate camping. This was a perfect place to meet, discuss, learn about the nature because the venue itself has so much to offer.

The projects goal was the youngsters to leave the electronics behind and to reconnect with nature, learn about how to act sustainable and produce less waste, how to find way to shop smart or how to live sustainable lives. The workshops were done by non-formal education methods where the youngsters had the opportunity to learn from each other, share information, share their culture and the practices from their own country.

There were many study visits where the youngsters visited the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Wadden sea and learned about why is it so special, the Klimahaus museum in Bremerhaven, or the organic farm near the camp. On these sites they learned about the impact that global warming has on the climate in different parts of the world.

The youngsters had also very many fun outdoor activities – they were riding the bikes on longer distances seeing the rural north Germany, hiking or going to the climbing forest.

On the end of the project the youngsters were talking about the next steps – next projects, how can they improve the local reality, how to convince their friends and family to have sustainable lives and create less waste, to avoid GMOs or to buy products without aluminum. Also the youngsters talked about where the next project should be, what would be the topic, what kind of impact should it have.

Each evening different country was having national evening where they presented their culture, traditions, food, information, beautiful places and we also invited the other campers to join our evenings and play all the games with us.

The youngsters were really sad that they had to go back to their countries, and promised that they are going to see each other again.

The youngsters created this video with impressions from the project.

This project was financed by the Erasmus +  programme and the German National Agency.