It’s already been six months since I moved from a city of 3 million to a town of 3 thousand people in the middle of nowhere. I changed my active busy life that I had in Kyiv, Ukraine, to a slow motion way of living in Góis, Portugal. This is all because of my European Voluntary Service (EVS) placement in an organization with a name nobody-can-pronounce – RAIZVANGUARDA – Associação Cultural.
I live in an old house together with another volunteer Claire from London, a tiny snail in the bathroom and a grey mouse under my bed. We are working in an Old Primary School in Bordeiro on top of a hill. By “we” I mean Claire and I.
Gandhi once said: “Be the change that you wish to see in the world”. As a matter of fact, we, the young people, can actually make an impact. In fact, there are so many of us in this world that we have the potential and energy to bring positive change. It all relies on our willingness to act and to be passionate about good deeds. Volunteerism is one civic virtue that has not been very much present in our Balkan societies.
For a moment, I would like you to think: When was the last time that you volunteered? What did you do and how did you feel? If good feelings and memories cross your mind, than this... Read More »
Neither the heavy rain that set Seine River out of its course, nor the Euro Cup 2016 were big enough obstacle to stop the three international events that took place in Paris the first week of July. The willingness for activities of such rang resulted with bold step being taken – an establishment of a Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO). Among the signatories of this agreement were representatives of the national governments of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. This was injection of hope that youth once again can act on a closer relationship and play an active role in the creation of stable societies that build trust among peoples. Entrusting the office to be... Read More »
If you type the words youth activism on Google, you can find about 473.000 results and on the top of the page a common definition that ‘youth activism is youth engagement in community, organizing for social change’.
Exactly this topic was in the center of the project Switch on: Participation Mode. Realized by the NGO Youth Alliance Krushevo in six different cities in Macedonia, it set public debates and open discussions between young people and representatives of civil society, as well as teachers and professors. This project aimed to emphasize the potentials and opportunities of the youth civic activism, but also to stimulate the responsibility and the awareness not just of the youngsters and their parents but... Read More »
„In my opinion integration in Slovakia is not the best… but I hope the situation will be better. It is a long process.“. This is how Martina Zemanová, a 26-year-old student at Comenius University and member of Civic Association TU SOM DOMA (This is my home), explains the situation of young disabled people in Bratislava. This association gathers six enthusiastic people whose goal is to help and support youngsters with disabilities towards independent life. They are living together in one apartment, organizing free time activities, cultural events, trainings for their fellows, professionals and volunteers but also providing services for disabled people.
The main target of one of their projects, called I-mlyncek, is to raise awareness about their... Read More »
The town of Komárno is located in the south of Slovakia with a population of almost 36.000 citizens. Through the town of Komárno flows the Danube, once representing the border between Hungary and Slovakia, nowadays simply a picturesque part of Komárno’s landscape. With the establishment of the European Schengen area the Elisabeth Bridge over the Danube is no longer a border crossing, but remains a vital connection between Slovak and Hungarian people. However, the fall of the border is not simply a relief for travelling from one country to another; it is a strengthened connection between two cultures, traditions and peoples striving to overcome the ever-lasting burden of historical conflict.
“If you want to understand the whole concept, you need to understand the core. ´says Erik, a 67 year old man who has been living in Nové Zámky his entire life. The city of Nové Zámky is located 100 km from Bratislava and only 25 km from the Hungarian border. The population is around 40.000 inhabitants, while 30% of them are a minority of Hungarian ethnicity. The integration of Slovaks and the inhabitants of Hungarian origin has been a big a social issue: “ The issue is going on for 1200 years, we are not killing each other though,” concludes Erik.
Erik states: “The Slovak Constitution from 1992 asserts that the ‘state language’ on the territory of... Read More »
#iversityis2 made a virtual global circuit in October 2015 to mark the second anniversary of the launch of the iversity platform. Where was iversity in 2013, and where are its standing as global learning platform with free MOOCs today? What have changed for the platform, and what have changed for the team?
Yes, time flies. In 2013, we were busy collecting our first courses and partnerships with the MOOC Production Fellowship. We were a young, small online learning company with 10 new courses in production with a tight deadline to finish the platform. 2 years later, we have had over 100 courses and over 1 million course enrolments.
Tunisia is the first country in the entire Arab world to have a huge youth uprising in the North Africa countries’ history that ended up with a revolution in 2011 affecting not only Tunisia, but the other Arab countries as well.
The Arab spring started in 2011, in the same year when entrepreneurship has shown its positive effects on the community development. It was a tool that it was so needed by the young people to change their life and contribute effectively in their community.
There are many social entrepreneurs who succeeded after the Tunisian revolution, founding social enterprises that tackle the local community problems. One of those entrepreneurs, Hamida Louguini a Tunisian social entrepreneur, whose... Read More »
Frida Kahlo dominates the room with her silent stare. Gathered in a conference room in the centre of Bratislava (Slovakia) are thirty young people from different corners of Europe, reunited with the main purpose of discussing the situation of media and how it portrays minorities in the Old Continent.
One of the most prominent guest speakers to visit is Slovak LGTB activist Robert Furiel who shone some light on the situation of this community in his country. After studying and working in Prague for eight years, he came back to his homeland where he founded Saplinq, his own NGO aimed at fighting for the rights of LGBT and bringing the matter to public discussion. An avid reader... Read More »