Category Archive : happiness

Youth Exchange „Re:Sound“ – Neumarkt/Austria

From the 12th until 18th of May 2019, 35 young Europeans gathered at the Castle Forchenstein
(Europaburg) in Neumarkt in Styria, Austria for Re:Sound, an ERASMUS+ project about self-expression through music, movement, and connection with ourselves, our surroundings, and one another.

During the day, we devised choreographies, we re-created sounds using recycled instruments, we produced and recorded songs that were conceived in the matter of hours; we improvised… a lot; we experimented, we pushed our boundaries, and through all this, we grew. Apart from teaching each other the folkloric dances of our respective cultures, in the evenings we would also exchange stories, share our feelings and experiences, and gradually discover how much we all have in common. 

Artistic Night: On one of those evenings, each participant was given 3 minutes to present their authentic self to the group in whichever way he/she wished. At first, the task troubled some of us as we tried to determine how best to express something so complex in just 3 minutes and with limited preparation time. When the time came, each of us had some sort of performance prepared but at the moment of delivery, a lot of us decided to improvise a bit as well and through that, show another part of ourselves- perhaps a more guarded part of ourselves. Some participants chose to express their true selves through a song, a dance, or by reciting a poem; others gave us a glimpse of their innermost selves by telling us what the world was like through their eyes at that very moment. On the other hand, some participants chose to sit in front of the group and to not say nor do anything at all- nothing at all except feel the energy of the group and the way in which we connect with one another. A few participants chose to present to us something that I can only describe as the true definition of sublimation: converting our innermost complexities and impulses into a type of art. By the end of the evening, the bond between us grew deeper and stronger. Probably because we witnessed an unexpected degree of authenticity because we had exposed ourselves and been accepted exactly as we are. It was truly inspiring to see how each person chose their own unique way of expressing his/herself, and that despite our individuality we could still understand, relate to, and connect with what was being expressed.

I think I speak for the whole group when I say that we were fortunate to partake in a project that not

only had all the essential ingredients that make up a wonderful experience (e.g. delicious home-made food, a great venue surrounded by green lushness and snowy mountain peaks), but also passionate organizers who very tangibly put their heads & hearts into the creation and implementation of the project. We witnessed the humbling beauty of what happens when a group of people chooses openness & authenticity and embraces the entirety of an experience.

Andrea Allmayer


Di5Connected – our follow-up :)

Two months after the amazing, technology free project Di5connected in Cortemilia, Italy, the Austrian girls organise da follow-up event in Graz. Samire came to visit Antonia, Elisa and Marion in Graz in order to prepare the event and of course to check up on how we’re doing with our contracts! We decided to invite people to an Erasmus+ game afternoon where we told them something about Erasmus+, the project we recently went to as well as the board game we created ourselves.They were intrigued, and it was fun to play the game again.

We took some pictures of our preparatory meeting and with the people, but while playing, there were of course no phones allowed! We also took a video explaining the basic rules. At the end of this blogpost you’ll find a more detailed description and instructions for our board game.



Number of players

More than 6 (depends on how many characters you have), it has to be an even number

Purpose of the game:
Two teams play against each other: the connected (with a phone) against the disconnected. The goal is to “turn” all the players of the opposing team. When all players are either connected or disconnected that team wins. But: there is no limit how often players can be turned, turned back and then turned again.

How to play step by step:

1. At first draw a character card. On the card you can see the name of your character, the team (WiFi= team connected) and your special power. Find also the same playing piece. If you are in team connected you get a smartphone that you have to in the playing piece. You also get your special power card in the beginning.

2. Prepare separate decks of “!” and “?” cards.

3. Choose a starting point from which to enter the game. Make sure that players of the same team don’t sit next to each other, they can’t enter through the same door.

4. You move by rolling the dice, you can move the number of fields and the direction you want.

5. Meeting people: Players are turned during fights. Those can happen anywhere two or more players from opposing teams (means: a player with a smartphone and a player without a smartphone) meet: in the corridors, in rooms and in Cortemilia. If you meet a person from your team you don’t fight.

6. How to enter a room:
reach the door with the exact number. If you reach the door by accident, you have to enter.

7. How to go to Cortemilia: reach the field marked “?” and complete the task. You don’t have to enter Cortemilia if you accidentally reach the “?”

8. Fights: all involved players roll the dice, the higher number wins. The player with the lower number has to change the team (to take or to give away the smartphone). If there are multiple players from the same team involved, the results are added up.
When fights happen in the room, the players draw a “!” card first. If a player draws their own special power, they can use it immediately to win the fight or choose to keep it for later in order to use the special power as it is described on the character card. Special powers can only be used in Cortemilia, and a player can only carry one special power at a time. If a player has been turned and draws their special power card during a fight, they re-enter their original team.

9. Important: Even if you change you team a couple of times during the game you still aim to belong to the team from the beginning (given on your card). eg: you are the grandma from team disconnected (without smartphone). You meet a person with a smartphone lose a fight. So you get a smartphone. Next time you meet a person without a smartphone, so you have to fight again. You should lose in order to get rid of your smartphone and be disconnected again.

“?”: draw a card and complete the task. If you don’t want to do it, you have to skip one round.

-open sharing: roll the dice and see which number is which task

-reflection group: roll the dice and see which number is which task

-challenge: roll the dice and see which number is which task

-meditation: skip one round

-coffee break: the whole team skips one round


Youth exchange „If not you, then who?“ – Lithuania

From 18th until 25th of May we had the opportunity, thanks to our friends from the BetterMaking organization, to take part in the youth exchange entitled „If not you, then who?“ in Lithuania. Together with youngsters from Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary we worked on solidarity within Europe and how we can strengthen it.

Arriving at the venue we were warmly welcomed by the organizers, who immediately introduced us to Lithuania’s national sport (some even say it is their religion) Basketball. In a cozy atmosphere we gathered in the conference room for the first time to watch the game together and started to get to know each other a bit. After long journeys we got time to rest or have a walk in the area before the real start in the next morning.

The youth exchange took place in Riterio Krantas, there is no better way to describe this magic venue, organizers, programme and people than with the song from one of our first teambuilding activities, which says 

„Somewhere between the Europe, (the Europe) 

and the the Baltic Sea (the Baltic Sea)

There is a land of very (very, very, very)

Very beautiful beauty.“ 

In the first days we got to know each other, learnt to work together, trust each other and began to create friendships. From building spaghetti bridges, to pulling out the beetroot to being blind-folded and creating a perfect square we bonded and became a real team.
Another key element of the first day was the youthpass and Erasmus+. In groups of ‚oldies‘ and ’newbies‘ we explored why we are actually here and how we can proof what we have been doing once we come back home.

Throughout the week we worked on European solidarity and how we can become active ourselves to create a sense of community. Discussing relevant issues in national and international teams opened our eyes and increased intercultural knowledge and understanding. Already on the first day we knew that our big aim of the week will be to implement activities in a local highschool and to inform the students about Erasmus+, which is why we worked a lot on our speaking skills.

In the next days we gave speeches in different ways on European topics, discussed education in Oxford debates and created our own countries for a simulation game. In all those sessions we were supposed to work in small groups, but overall we had one big goal in common that we had to keep in mind. The simulation game clearly showed how Europe functions and how easy it is to drift off and forget about a common agreement and goal. Thanks to the game and the discussion afterwards we realized how relevant solidarity amongst our countries is and that we should always keep the bigger picture in mind. 

And because personal experience says more than any blogpost, there are also impressions of participants:

The project in Riterio Krantas was unbelievable. I think the most fascinating thing for me was the people that I have met and connected with there and who I can call friends now. Also the place was amazing the view and the nature you have there was incredible. (Ahmed)

This youth exchange was by far one of my best Erasmus+ project. Once again I learnt why I am staying in this Erasmus+ world. It was amazing to see all the effort, preparation and happiness from everyone throughout the week. There was a lot to learn from each session and I am more than grateful that I was part of this experience! (Nina) 

After many working days and party nights it was time for feedback, last letters and evaluation before we had to say good-bye again – or rather see you soon 🙂 

The project was intense, fun and created beautiful memories, learnings and future project-partnerships! Thank you Innoved Lietuva for organizing this amazing youth exchange!


We still like to move it, move it! – Our Follow-ups


During our Youth Exchange in Vienna we experienced what a great impact sports and movement and spending time with others had on our wellbeing. So, we (Marion and Elisa) decided to spread the energy we gained from that project. We created an event on Facebook and invited everybody to a treasure hunt with the motto “Be a better explorer than Dora”. The treasure hunt aimed to combine being active, exploring the city of Graz, having fun together and of course making Erasmus+ projects more visible in our surroundings.

We decided on 22 tasks for the participants to fulfil within two hours. The tasks were a mixture of fun-facts such as “Which international popstar went to school in Graz?” (Conchita Wurst, by the way) , exercise “How many steps lead up to Schlossberg?” (260) and specific Graz knowledge like “Find the snowman that is there all year round”. We asked the participants to take pictures and videos as proof of them having completed each task. One we even completed with the participants after the treasure hunt: we sang the song “Hulapalu” together.

We gathered on Saturday 25th of March at the main square. In order for potential participants to recognise us and to gain attention among other people, we had poster of Dora with us. We didn’t even have to wait for a minute and we had a group of people around us who couldn’t wait to start the treasure hunt. We formed smaller groups to enable competition for a very special prize.

After two hours, which were flying by, we checked the completed tasks of each group. All the groups did an excellent job and completed almost all the given tasks. Due to that fact we decided that it would only be fair to have a prize for everyone: Chocolate! 🙂

All in all, we were more than satisfied with the results of our follow-up. Everyone seemed very interested in the Erasmus+ programme, and some people stayed a bit longer afterwards for a chat and to get more information. One participant also showed up on Nina’s workshop, which was a very pleasant surprise.

Yours Marion & Elisa


Coming back from the youth exchange in Vienna, we knew that we should think of a follow-up activity that has to do with sports -like the youth exchange- and should promote Erasmus+. As Marion and Elisa already focused on the moving part, Martin and me (Nina) decided to reach out and get people to know about Erasmus+ and all its great opportunities.

While brainstorming how to best do this, we agreed together with the whole Austrian team, that the fact that we all travel quite a lot by participating in projects, we should definitely use it for a catchy title. Said, done. On 29th of March we implemented our little workshop on Erasmus+ in Logo Youth center in Graz.

What we did not think through was that there are already Easter holidays… which is why we ended up being a small – but very productive – group of people. (as you can see – working hard!)
While it rained outside we got to know each other, exchanged our experience in the world of E+ and thought about why it is so hard to get people to try out something new.

After lots of snacks, laughs and funny stories we came up with the idea to try to make a workshop in some schools. There we could explain the ideas behind E+ and reach students plus teachers (who need to excuse their missing classes later

Although our workshop did not go as planned, as everybody knew lots about E+ already, we managed to quickly change our plans and work with what is there. It has been a great afternoon and we are looking forward to putting our idea into action!

Yours Nina & Martin

I like to move it, move it! Youth Exchange

This time wEUnite itself organized a project which took place in Vienna from the 15th until the 22nd of February 2018.

The main topic due to the title „I like to move it, move it“, was the impact of sports in personal daily life. A perfect fitting number of 25 participants from five countries (group of five per country) attended in the project. Besides of Austria with some German influence, also Poland, Italy, Lithuania and Estonia were on board.

Already before we met each other in person, a Facebook group was created along with assignments to get to know the other participants and an idea about the project as well as receiving information about the schedule and other essential stuff.

Move it, move.
I am going to start with our daily sport activities which began every mornging at 10:00 am after breakfast. Each day had another topic and they were built on each other. (01) The first day we did sports without movement and by ourselves. Jumping, stretching and sweating, all together but still alone. (02) The following day was about others and we had to choose a partner with whom we performed the given tasks. It was a lot of fun and together the exercises didn’t feel that hard. (03) The third day was about music. Up to now our sports activities were just accompanied by cheering and moaning, but that day our DJ (Antonio) provided good sounds. (04) On this day we were separated into five groups and had to fulfil several competitions – let the games begin. (05) Despite the forecast (snow and freezingly cold) we had a great walk to the city centre, like schoolkids divided into teams of two. Then we got an intense topic, like talking about love or what makes one happy/sad and after five minutes we had to switch partners. Thereby we again got to know other people better and we had great and meaningful conversations. (06) Again divided into groups we did a circle training with 6 stations. I cannot tell you how long three minutes can feel and how exhausting they can be. Just give it a try 😉 (07) The last day of the project was quite intense. Already before breakfast there were rumours about a hard workout. One and a half our later everyone broke down on the floor. Satisfied and filled with pure happiness. We all did a good job.


Hey buddy, hey what’s up.
On the very first day we had to choose a buddy who was from now on always by our side to support and help one another. During the program every participant set a personal goal and without my buddy I am not sure if I would have succeeded, but like that I did! I appreciated this concept very much and within days we became closer and closer. Additionally, there were five reflexion groups, each led by a team member, to talk about the daily experiences, problems and requests.

Yes, we can, yes I can!
I do not have enough time, I cannot do this, I am not good enough, et cetera…. There are so many excuses why we are hiding our light under a bushel. Throughout several aspects we learned to identify our excuses which stop us from doing what we want, reaching our goals and how to deal with them or even end them. Analysing your habits and excuses was quite intense and I will keep up doing it regularly and throwing them away. We are better than this. We can do anything we want. Just believe in you and put effort into reaching your dreams. 
Let’s just kill someone and grab a beer!
During our free-time we gathered together and played the well-known mafia game in the children area of the hostel lobby, went to grab some beers in a cozy bar around the corner, had funny as well as deep conversations, awesome live-music in the staircase and so much more. All in all, these intense days together brought a strong bondage in our group and to say goodbye at day 8 ways really hard. I cannot mention everything we did or describe the feeling you are going to have in such a project, or the impact it will have on you. Just one thing: DO IT, you will love it!

Yours, Anna