Wir weit weg 2017/18 – Saxon young people on a discovery trip in Europe with the KINDERVEREINIGUNG Leipzig e.V.

We’re finally off! After nine months of preparation and anticipation we start this summer wir weit weg youth exchanges. In the context of wir weit weg (www), the interactive youth project of the KINDERVEREINIGUNG Leipzig e.V. International work, young people of the seventh to ninth grades have designed and organized their own international youth encounter in regular afternoon meetings. Thanks to funding from the Innovation Fund of the Federal Children’s and Youth Plan, the project takes place at three secondary schools in Leipzig and one each in Frohburg and Chemnitz.

The groups, guided by their coaches (voluntary students), made many decisions (which partner country? Which topic for the meeting? How do we want to travel? How do we manage finances sensibly?), took over planning areas independently and familiarised themselves with topics (“game expert”, “planning team film evening” or “team country presentation”) and worked with enthusiasm and determination towards the implementation of their youth exchange.

Today, the first group to fly to Lisbon is the Helmholtz High School youth group, where they meet with their Portuguese partner group. With them they want to deal with the topics of movement, health and sustainability from streetfootball to upcypling, in a sporty and creative way. Above all, however, it’s about getting to know each other and experiencing the feeling in the workshops that you can create something together, even though everyone speaks poor English. Moreover, such youth exchanges almost always lead to new friendships. This encounter, like most others, is possible thanks to the financial support from the ERASMUS+ programme of the European Commission.

In July, the Frohburger www-group flies to the east coast of Ireland and goes on discovery trips and outdoor adventures together with their peers from Ireland, Italy, Norway and Turkey under the motto “Back to the future – cultural heritage”. In August the Chemnitzer meet young people from Finland and France in Finland. There they will talk about their everyday life and its many facets and discover nature in Finland. At the end of August, participants from the Paunsdorf secondary school will be drawn to the Côte d’Azur for a youth encounter. In the mountains near the French south coast to explore “culture and diversity”. In October the group of the 56th high school finally starts in Greece, where they want to experience encounter and exchange through “sport and food”. Three groups will then be able to welcome their partners in spring 2019 for a return exchange in Saxony.