Category Archive : villach

KeepCalm! – this was it

Keep Calm, an Erasmus+ Training Course which took place in Villach. This course was aimed at people, who wished to improve their knowledge on the topic – Conflict Resolution. This topic is an important one when it comes to Youth Work as well as any type of social work. The group began the meeting by getting to know each other. This was crucial, as they all needed to learn about one another so that they could improve their trust and teamwork. The participants spent time on cultural differences, which they all had but few of them were aware of it. Then the focus moved to understanding what exactly conflict is. Finding the

definition and causes of it, from that the group moved to learning and practicing methods of solving conflicts, focusing mostly on the skill of mediation. This skill was practiced with a number of activities, mainly role playing. During the entire meeting, the participants had free time to get to know each other as well as cultural evenings, during which they shared their own cultures. This had an amazing effect of letting people learn about foreign countries and the ways how they work as well as think. The meeting ended with group work part on preparing future plans part on attempting the Mission Impossible. The participants brainstormed ideas for what they could do together in the future. They came up with several ideas that were worth a try. The whole meeting ended with the Youthpass ceremony and a farewell party. The participants exchanged contact information and last warm words before leaving for home. This Training course was a great experience, which allowed all the participants and trainers to learn something new as well as to meet great people. 
(Krzysztof Bruzgul, Poland)

KeepCalm was the second project as a trainer and the fourth as organizer for me. Having experienced another week with new, amazing people definitely improved my social skills but also the way I work with groups. It showed me, once again, that we do learn lifelong and especially learn a lot from each other. This opportunity and the experience will stay in my memory for a long, long time and I hope to meet those great people again some day at different projects, at different places.
(Nina-Bianca Anranter, Austria)

I loved learning more about other countries, their culture, food, drink and even dances and games. It was also nice to get to tell others about my own country. My favorite has to be tasting all the food from all the cultural nights 🙂 And I am really glad that I experienced snow for the very first time!
(Ruth Grech, Malta)

During my semester break in February there has been my second one-week

project organized by wEUnite and it was great again. This time I expected it to be, because I saved some good vibes from last summer.  Again I got a lot of new friends and made some good experiences giving me energy for the next semester. Still there is always something different. I want to tell you about it: This time I knew mostly all nations better, because beside Malta the nations participating have been the same but not so the people. And this hit me the most. It wasn’t a bad hit, more an eye-opening one. I had to experience that people from the same nations can behave differently. Please don’t hang me up on this one but this seriously got me. I wanted to believe that people from the same region with the same history behind their nation behave similar but I got proven wrong. Last time I got the feeling that Polish people are very proud of their country and also their personal achievements but none of the polish participants substantiated my expectations. Also I thought that all

Estonians are more heavy drinkers than people from Austria but that didn’t seem to be right this time either. I could go one with this but I think everyone has to experience that wisdom on their own. Instead I want to tell you what I have mostly learned this time about culture: Sometimes you can apply certain stereotypes on people and groups of people. That certainly is ok as long as you are willing to give up on them, the first chance you get. To think in clichés can sometimes help you to cope with a situation even faster. Important is, that you recognize that you do and also that you are willing to change them if needed. If you do, you are allowing yourself to make the most out of you and all the awesome people around this planet. With this being said, I am already excited for the next project and for new awesome people that break my explorative stereotypes.          

                                         (Manuel Esberger, Austria) 


KeepCalm! – 10 days left :)

Wow, time passes really fast… Our next project, KeepCalm!, is starting in 10 days already! You surely want to know what kind of project it is and what it’s all about 🙂 
It’s going to be a  training course, based on conflict management in everyday life situations and even more on those appearing in youth work. The focus will be put on strategies and techniques for conflict resolution, but also on how to use language efficiently for mediation. Another part will focus on the roots of conflicts but also intercultural exchange. „KeepCalm!” has the goal to teach youth workers how to react to conflicts and how to resolve them in an efficient way. Moreover, the participants will learn how to pass on their new knowledge to their coworkers.

As the beginning of this great week comes closer, we are getting more and more excited. You are curious now who we are? Well, the team that worked the last months to make this possible… 

Alexander Tscharre, Austria, organizer
“I was introduced to the Erasmus+ projects by wEUnite and they gave me an amazing view over the field of youth work and all it varieties. I want to change something in this world, especially for the youth, all the young people who are forsaken by society should get another chance and I want to give it to them. All of the different tools I’ve learned on my TCs so far and the ones I’ll learn in future will support me and help me to do my work with youth. In addition I got a view behind the scenes of an Erasmus+ project and the opportunity to involve in the organization of projects and I love it, I always give 200% for and during a project so you can enjoy it and have a good time.”
Studies: Paedagogical and Educational Science
Hobbies: Spending leisure time with friends, Youth projects, making videos, Music, Reading, Traveling

Nina-Bianca Anranter, Austria, trainer and organizer
“Thanks to the possibility of witnessing the world through numerous youth exchanges and training courses that I took part in, I developed myself a lot and learnt things that no school or university could have offered. Two years ago my colleague Kerstin and I decided to pass on our knowledge and give young people the chance to become more active. Organizing projects and being a trainer makes me happy as I always see people having fun, learn and grow.”
Studies: Teacher training programme English/Catholic Religion
Hobbies: Reading, Sports, Youth projects

Krzysztof Bruzgul, Poland, trainer
“With formal education in the field of pedagogy and three years in the field of non-formal education as a project participant, group leader, trainer and coordinator, my passion lies in education.”
My studies directed towards language, English and its philology, I specialized towards teaching this language as a second language. So, I am an English teacher by my education.
         My hobbies are wide and broad, for I am interested in a lot of things, but above all I value great stories. Listening, watching, reading or living through them

Kerstin Ess, Austria, trainer

“Taking part in youth projects for five years now made me a better person who wants to share those experiences. I wish for everyone to create such memories and great mind opening happenings. Cultural exchange opens not only your perception of others but also takes a great part in self-development.”
Studies: Meadia and Convergence Management

My hobbies are various, but what I prefer to do is travelling as it usually combines all my favorite activities.

Like our facebook page and follow our blog to stay up-to-date during the training course 🙂

A roadtrip through Estonia, Lithuania, Turkey, Czech Republic and Italy!

As we were extremely busy travelling through all countries we barely had time to write about our cultural experience. It would be boring to list all the facts and figures, so we decided to ask around and give you some quotes and impressions by our participants 🙂

„It was very nice to get to know so many new things about Estonia and I found so many similarities between our nations. From what I have heard at the cultural night I can even imagine to live there some day.“ – Paula, 21, Poland

„My favorite cultural evening was the Estonian one. They had some really delicious food, showed us a nice traditional dance and their presentations were great! The self-deprecation with the tourist guide video was hilarious. Also, they made me fall in love with Estonia!“ – Alex, 20, Austria

„Lithuanian night was great – I enjoyed it so much! I like the fact about the most difficult language and about their passion for basketball. Of course I enjoyed the food they offered as well, it was just awesome and delicious!“ – Michal, 24, Czech Republic
(This participant, Michal, is a mystery to everyone else on the training course… We are not sure whether he is Czech, Italian or Polish, maybe Austrian, as he was part of all those cultural nights. If anyone knows more – contact us!)

„I really appreciate the richness of details, food and music, and also the traditional dresses! Turkey is really an amazing place, full of history and culture. A great mix of ethnies! I am charmed by this country and would love to visit it some day.“ – Federica, 24, Italy

„It was awesome to see the next country which has so many interesting things to offer. Yet again I was 
amazed and charmed. Next year I will visit the Czech Republic for sure!“ – Adam, 24, Poland 

I wasn’t aware that different cultures bring so many different aspects with it. I learned how to use hand gestures to underline the things being said. This was mostly brought to us by the Italians.“ – Manuel, 21, Austria

A short visit to Austria & Poland!

So many different cultures in only two days! If we would tell you all about Austria and Poland that we have heard at the cultural nights until now, we could write pages… That’s why we decided to ask some participants after every presentation how they liked it – by doing this they already used their newly learnt rhetorical skills : )

#1 Austrian night

“What I really liked at the Austrian night was the home-made Zirbenschnaps. By drinking it, I had the feeling to smell and drink a pine tree at the same time. Another thing I appreciated a lot were the traditional dresses the girls wore. It is not really popular or usual in the Czech Republic. Dancing the Waltz was extremely interactive and as it is one of my favorite dances I enjoyed it a lot.” – Jana, 18, Czech Republic

“The beginning of the presentation was a nice surprise. I didn’t expect the group to walk into the room and dance the Waltz. What I also liked was the Austrian chocolate, the Mozartkugeln, it tasted delicious! In general the prepared food was really good. And the video that was shown about Austria was interesting as well.” – Kasparas, 23, Lithuania


#2 Polish night
“The video about Poland’s history was really interesting! But I also liked the second video with all those beautiful images of the country. In general I have to say that I liked the way how everything was presented.” – Cesare, 19, Italy

“What was the most interesting thing for me was the traditional clothing and folklore connected to it. And as we talk about Poland, I have to mention their tasty drinks – I liked them a lot!” – Maria, 27, Austria

(Maria & Cesare)

There are rumours about even more cultural presentations for the next days… Check our blog again & follow to be up-to-date!

SpeakUp! and welcome to Villach

After hours, days, weeks and months of hard work, the busy bees of wEUnite were waiting in Villach for their participants from Austria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Italy, Lithuania, Poland and Turkey to arrive in Villach in order to start our first training course SpeakUp!

                                (Tini, Alex, Maria, Nina, Manuel, Rainer)

We are really happy that all participants found their way and were full of energy for our first workshop sessions.

Last evening and today we already built a group, who works unbelievably good and fast together. As the two trainers (Manuel and Nina) say: „This is the best group ever! It’s amazing to work with them.“

And the day isn’t over yet – our Austrian team is preparing a presentation for the first cultural night…everyone is curious!

If you want to know how SpeakUp! will go on, follow our blog and like our page on Facebook!