For the 2nd year Institute for Digital Government is helping Romanian youngsters learn about EU values, principles and democracy. In October, a group of teenagers from National College Mihai Viteazu in Ploiesti (Romania) accompanied by German language professor Octavia Popescu Gavrila, travelled to Germany, joined by groups from other 6 EU countries. The theme of our project this year has been human rights education – our groups discussed and learned more about topics such as solidarity, equality, freedom of speech or human dignity.Here are a few of their stories about the project:
Diana Ciobanu, National College Mihai Viteazu in Ploiesti
I had the opportunity to go to Germany with an Erasmus+ project and I can say that it was one of the most beautiful experiences of my life.
I learnt that language and culture are not barriers to making friends and creating connections. The other participants were people from other 6 EU-contries. All of them were so friendly and it was great that I could meet them.
I got out of my comfort zone because I was supposed to communicate in english but I am so happy that i could exercise this language. I think this is one of the best things from this seminar.
We had a high variation of methods that kept the activities interesting. I learnt so many things and I talked about different subjects: religion, the death penalty, human rights etc. We also had activities where we could be creative: the comic workshop, the concert (we were the stars).
Erasmus is the best experience that can happen into a student’s life. It has changed my attitude and I also had so much fun. I am grateful for this opportunity.
Mihnea Botez, National College Mihai Viteazu in Ploiesti
I cannot find the proper words to express my gratitude regarding this project that I have been involved in. It was by all means a revealing experience which helped me a lot in my process of development. Starting from the activities conducted in Bad Marienberg had a very precise target : acceptance despite racial, religious or ethnical differences. The initiative was truly unique. The organizers coming up with brilliant ideas to always keep us entertained and participative.
The people that I met in Germany had a great impact on me. Having not so much time to spend together and afterwards maybe not seeing each other again gave us the opportunity to bond a lot and create some long-lasting friendships. I met people who shared the same ideas and beliefs as I do, having the same goals and aspirations in life, going through similar teenage problems and doubts and fears. This connected us a lot and the project undoubtedly served its purpose, because at the end of the seminar we were friends. No matter the nationalities or origins, we were teenagers who formed unforgettable friendships and shared life-long memories.
I am extremely grateful for being given the opportunity to be part of the project and i send a big “Thank you!” to each and every person who made my staying in Germany possible
Miruna Nicolae, National College Mihai Viteazu in Ploiesti
The only real nation is humanity.
This is the motto that the Romanian group chose to engrave on the plate in front of Europa House in Bad Marienberg. And the reasons for this are very clear. The Erasmus + project we took part in was a unique experience because we got to know ourselves better, exploring, above all, our human condition. I learned that home is not a place, but a feeling. Although we were a thousand miles away from our city, it felt like home … we were surrounded by people close to our hearts.
We took a well-deserved break from the worries of daily life: we broke off relatively easy and transposed ourselves into a wholly new, yet welcoming environment. Group activities, projects, lots of music and good cheer followed. The candlelight dinner, the game of life, and the discussions in international teams made me realize how important the contact with different cultures is for a teenager. In the end, all our involvement during the week resulted in close friendships, unforgettable memories and a bit of life experience.
I wish I could go back in time to that week, not to change something, but to feel again how it is to simply be human.
I’m so glad that I had the chance to participate into this project and I consider it being one of the most important experiences I have ever taken part in, because it helped me change my way of thinking , the way I learn and my perspective about future. I had the chance to meet a lot of people from some European countries and the chance to learn a lot of things which I wasn’t thinking about at all, for example: cultures, religions, educational systems.
Moreover, I remained in touch with some people from “Erasmus” and I’m talking to some of them almost everyday. I’m sure that this project will influence my future and it would make me a better person, a more tolerant one. I consider the impact of the project being huge, because it broadened my horizons and it helped me think about different subjects excepting school, it changed my perspective of society.
The week I spent during my Erasmus experience was one of the most inspiring experiences I’ve ever been part of. I’ve learnt many things about topics I wasn’t even interested in until then. The activities there made learning interesting and the groups in which we spent all our time were very diverse, because each one of us came from a different background and a different country, so we really had many to learn from each other, too.
We bonded with each other, became friends and supported each other in the educational process that took place there. To be honest, I think this was a great opportunity for me, because I strongly believe it made me think more outside the box and to be more creative.
I’m really grateful for this opportunity that had been given to me because it made me realise a lot and learn about things that surround me and sadly, I wouldn’t have ever found out about them without this project.
Project partners: National College Mihai Viteazu Ploiesti and Europahaus Marienberg