07 August 2016

Growing Tree

During the 16th and the 25th of July 2016, three participants have represented GEYC in Horni Maršov (Czech Republic), attending ''Growing Tree Training Course'', project financed through Erasmus+ Programme.

The project has reunited youth workers from 8 different countries(Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Italy, Republic of Macedonia, Republic of Moldova and Romania). The project aimed to increase competences of the coordinators of volunteers and Erasmus+ projects who are responsible for participants selection, evaluation of their learning and involvement of youth leaders.

Trip to Sněžka, the highest mountain in Czech Republic

The project set the following objectives:
-To provide Erasmus+ and volunteers coordinators with tools and theoretical background about youth empowerment and participation
-To exchange the successful practices and the most common mistakes among the partner organizations of Erasmus+ program
-To equip the Erasmus+ and volunteers coordinators with competences to conduct need analysis in their local communities and among their target groups
-To plan a change and develop a support system within the organizations that would enable the young people sent by the organization to international projects to transfer gained knowledge, skills and attitudes to local
-To reinforce the network and cooperation among the partner organizations and to continue working on the same topic of youth empowerment in future and support each other.

And we found it very helpful for the future of our organization. We developed new strategies for change and we are working on applying them in order to make the NGO grow.

Let`s find out how the participants describe this experience in the beautiful countryside of Czech Republic!

"A few things I learnt about trees:
- there is no strong tree without a strong root;
- there are small and big trees, with or without leaves, with or without fruits, but they can all live together in the same forest;
- people usually focus more on the fruits, but sometimes the tree is much more important;
- in the same time, people hurt the most the trees, but they also need them the most;
The Growing tree was an excellent opportunity to reflect on our organisation, to better understand our strengths and weaknesses and to plan strategies for change. Also, it was a high density of passionate youth workers." (Gabriel)
""Growing Tree" offered me a different approach on my own work in youth sector and a new perspective upon relations between people, in general.
The opportunity to think and discuss about the structure of the organization has contured some characteristics that weren`t visible for us until that time. These aspects motivated us to work on a strategy for change and to reflect upon our own attitudes.

Growing Tree team

What I have learnt is that there are bad- and good sides wherever you look. If you consider only the good sides, there comes a point when you can`t deal anymore with the problems that may appear as consequences of the negative aspects. So we should always think twice before we act, before we decide upon the direction of our actions. 
The idea of growing our own tree, that the organizers had, is, from my perspective, one of a kind, because it brings motivation to think about our own growth, our own development after the end of the project. I am grateful for the opportunity I have been given to meet all the amazing people that have attended this training course and I am more than sure that this was only the part where we have planted the seeds and there will definitely be more to come for us in the near future.

"Growing Tree" can be resumed to 6 words: great context and content, perfect time-management! Congratulations for all your work, for the quality you have brought in non-formal learning."


"My experience in the project was very exciting, being my first training course. I did not to expect, having only experience in youth exchanges. The most interesting thing i have learned in the project was the way each participant Organization operates can change how the organization works. I think is an important aid for each participant to know the weaknesses and strengths of how each activity takes place. It is difficult to do this without help, because every volunteer before such an analysis considers his organization is the most effective. How the project was organized was a professional one, each member of the organizing team tried to help in any situation, even if there were no major problems. 

The games joined well with all the practical activities each organization has done a detalied analysis of activities. I can not complain about anything, accomodation was impressive, located in a house in baroque style, which complemented the participating team and provided a necessary heat in an international project. Finally i can say that the whole project was memorable, i can not reproach nothing, and the things we have learned in the first place how each participant in related to the organization to which he belongs. Finally, the paradigm shift in the organization was great, a complete analysis and full ot typs from the trainers, who helped each deadlock. As a conclusion, it is a project that deserves a second edition!"