Youth Exchange „Unplugged“ – Greece
Can you live without your phone for a whole week?
This question is what brought 35 youngsters from 7 different countries to Greece.
As a part of this Group, we arrived in Hopeland on the 10th of October 2021. Hopeland is a magical place in the middle of nowhere on the peninsula Peloponnese.
Between olive trees and vineyards we found ourselves sleeping in mud houses and tipi tents. To become tough and enjoy the view of the beautiful night sky, we took cold showers outside. The centre of hopeland is an old oak tree which is the reason why this place was founded.
In the first two days we got to know each other and brainstormed about the negative and positive impacts of technology on our daily lives.
On the evening of day 2 we ceremonially put our phones and watches in a sturdy metal box and locked it with heavy chains and a lock. This was the start of our Digital Detox.
The next few days we experienced all of our senses to become aware of ourselves and our bodies. We enjoyed hiking through greek nature in silence or with closed eyes, fed the goats of a local farmer and harvested vegetables.
We experienced food meditation, aromatherapy and contact improvisation.
To give back to the local community and feel the sensation of clay on our hands, we helped to renovate a local townhouse.
This way we felt the impact of dopamine from different sources than likes on Instagram. Even when we got our phones back we did not feel the need to use them anymore and rather enjoyed the rest of the time in hopeland with nature and the amazing people.
We are glad that we had the chance to participate in this exchange, which was co-funded by the ErasmusPlus programme of the EU, as representatives of wEUnite.