GeoLux2013 - Ertoba Project
The aim of the project is to adress two issues that are interconnected: 1. While countries of the European Union become more and more integreated and youth from the so-called West can travel freely and enjoy programs like Erasmus, the european countries east of the EU borders are still isolated from most of the values and dreams of a united and peaceful Europe. One of these countries is Georgia in the Caucasus. There is a need to bring youth from the EU and Georgia together to learn from each other, stop isolation of poor Georgian Youth, talk about peace and the future of Europe, exchange best practices and be trained in different skills ranging from manual work, handycraft, environmenal education, peace education, peace building projects, language skills etc. 2. Since the war of 2008 between Georgia and Russia the cities of Georiga see a lot of Internaly Displaced People (IDPs) inside of the cities that have fled the two now regions that were declared autonomous by Russia, Abcasia and South-Ossetia. Among the IDPs are a lot of young boys and girls that now have a hard time as they had to flee the know rural mountain villiages to find themselves in the cities and compounds, a setting they have hard to adapt to. They often lack basic skills to make a life in the urban and sub-urban contexts they are now facing. In order to face the job market and to build a generation of peace and reconciliation, the young IDPs need associations and structures in which they can get the necessary support to build on a brighter future. OBJECTIVE The first objectif is linked to the first aim of the project: during GeoLux 2013 we want to spend 20 days with scouts and non-scouts from both Luxembourg and Georgia in order to exchange, learn and work towards a more peaceful generation of Europeans both east and west. After the camp we do not only want to see the first structures of the Youth Eco Village (see second objective) to be finished due to our work camp but we would like participants to have gained a set list of competencies as: Social Competencies: teamwork, multicultural experience, social adeptness, cultural and historical awareness, better expression,... Professional Competencies:, construction skills, manual work skills, handycraft skills, starting a project skills, environmental knowledge, knowledge on how to better "sell" their skills on CV and job-interviews, budget keeping,... Personal Competencies: cooking skills, better attitudes towards health and safety, ecology, english language skills,... All the training offered during our exchange and workcamp in Georgia will focus around 3 main topics: 1. EMPOWERING YOURSELF THROUGH VOLUNTEERING: HOW TO GET MORE OUT OF THE SKILLS AND COMPETENCIES LEARNED THOUGHT VOLUNTEERING AND HOW TO BETTER ‘SELL’ THESE AND WHAT ARE THE TRENDS IN YOUTH WORK AND VOLUNTEERING. WHAT ARE THE OPTION IN VOLUNTEERING WITH PRACTICAL WORK IN PROJECTS. 2. ECOLOGY AND THE VALUE OF THE ENVIRONMENT: IF OUR SOCIETY WANTS TO KEEP UP THE CURRENT LIVING STANDARDS WE NEED TO INVEST IN CLEANER TECHNOLOGIES AND UNDERSTAND AND PROTECT OUR ENVIRONMENT BETTER, THERE WILL BE A HUGE JOB MARKET IN THIS DOMAIN AND FUTURE GROWTH COULD WELL COME IN THIS SECTOR. WE WANT PARTICIPANTS TO BETTER UNDERSTAND OUR IMPACT ON THE ECO-SYSTEMS AND TO GIVE THEM INTEREST IN THIS DOMAIN FOR THEIR FUTURE CAREERS. 3. MANUAL WORK AND SAFETY: WE OFTEN UNDERESTIMATE THE VALUE OF MANUAL WORK, WHILE IN GEORGIA THIS SECTOR IS STILL A MAIN DRIVER IN THE JOB MARKET, HEALTH AND SAFETY COMES OFTEN LAST IN THIS CAUCASIAN COUNTRY. IN LUXEMBOURG ON THE OTHER SIDE MANUAL JOBS ARE OFTEN SEEN AS BAD VALUE AND "DIRTY" AND WHILE THE SECTOR NEEDS WORKFORCE, FEWER AND FEWER YOUTH ARE OPTING FOR AN EDUCATION IN THE MANUAL LABOR SECTOR. WE WANT TO SHOW THE PARTICIPANTS HOW SAFE MANUAL WORK CAN BE FUN AND A START IN A BRIGHT FUTURE FOR THEM AND THUS GIVE BACK SOME VALUE TO MANUAL LABOUR. The second objectf is to renovate during the work-camp part of GeoLux 2013 and to launch and run after this camp a so-called Youth Eco Villiage in the Georgian rural region so that the NGO Georigan Youth for Europe can host a handful of IDPs in the Centre to give those young people a second chance in life. The centre would offer accomodation and on the job training to those IDPs selected to stay in the Centre. They will be able to do agriculture, bee-keeping, english lessons, handycraft and learn about social and responsible entrepreneurship. The site in Pona that we aquired already has 3 houses on it, one of them is in good shape and was constructed for a simlar project that had to be abondoned (death of project leader) and can host up to 15 young IDPs for 6-12 month training once completed, the second one is an old one classroom school that we will transforme into a shelter and meeting room for youthwork, renovation on the third house will not be completed during 2013 but offers possibilities for late development for IDP accomodation. IDPs will be coached by staff from Georgian Youth for Europe and EVS Volunteers of this association. The camp ground a the back of the houses which the IDPs would learn to manage would be available to scouts groups in Georgia as a safe and well managed camp groud, something inexistant in the country today. Agricultural land can be found behind the houses and is part of the estate that has been bought for the project. Impact:GeoLux is designed to be an eye opener for the young participants, the way its program is designed will ensure that for each type of background and character there will be inspiring learning moments. The aimed mix in the participants backgrounds in terms of culture, financial background, schooling, traditions and by adding the participants from Luxembourg State Youth Care Centers (Orphanage) and the IDP from Georgia, we will have an enormous exchange base to make sure that we clearly impact the young participants life already just by exchanging and debating between themselves. The working method that includes the concept of mini-teams, which helps to spark up exchange and makes getting to know each other easier helps to get a more familiar exchange experience. In October 2013 we will organise a follow-up meeting both in Luxembourg and in Georgia linked via skype in order to chat about the learning effects and the outcomes of the project. We will further link up the mini-teams before and after the project to communicate outside of the 21 days next summer using modern social media tools.
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