Virtual consumption – real problems Report: Youth exchange in Felsőtárkány

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Green Sun Association offered a new opportunity to youngsters from Szeklerland to participate in a youth exchange abroad from the 23rd through the 29th of September. The exchange project “Virtual consumption – real problems” took place in Felsőtárkány, Hungary, and was co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme.The exchange, that lasted for 5 days, started with a 17-hour trip for the team. After arriving to the venue, the members finally met the participant from other countries and had the chance to complain about the long and tiring journey. The photos taken during the event are available on Green Sun Association’s Facebook page.

After having lunch, all participants gathered in the conference room, where we were introduced to the schedule planned for the week, we talked about the rules and expectations and later on, we engaged in some getting-to-know activities. Participants came from various places, such as Upper Hungary (Slovakia), Zakarpattia Oblast (Ukraine), Palestine, Hungary and Szeklerland (Romania). Green Sun Association from Szeklerland was represented by Bakk Anna, Farkas Barna, Rancz Izabella, Bálint Norbert-László and Rancz Zsolt.

The topic of the exchange was virtual consumption and online purchases. We had the chance to learn about booking cheap flights, using eBay, AliExpress and other webshops in a smart way. We used what we learned in small group workshops, where we competed to plan the best vacation and the cheapest city break. We also had activities to support teamwork, such as building a spaghetti tower and organizing a singing contest. We had programs outside the venue, too, we rode the small train to visit the surroundings, we hiked in the forest and spent a whole afternoon in Eger. The cultural presentations of the participating countries, where we could learn traditional dances and try some local food and beverages, made our evenings very pleasant.

Every youth exchange project has a topic that makes it meaningful. Personally, I think, that each activity offered me a new experience. The organizers also confirmed that the aim of the project is that the participants challenge themselves in various situations, get to know and appreciate each other, build friendships and gain new experiences together. Instead of focusing on formal education, the program was built on nonformal methods and promoted personal growth. We had the chance to meet new people, that came from different places and different cultural backgrounds, and this way, everyone could take home something new.

The participants hereby express their gratitude to Green Sun Association and H-Union Hungarian Society and Economy Developer Alliance for organizing this project and making it possible for them to take part in it.

Author: Bálint Norbert-László

Translated by Bakk Anna