Good Energies Alliance Ireland is accredited as a sending organisation for young people in County Leitrim who would like to live an international experience through the European Voluntary Service (EVS) programme. This summer, for the first time, four young Irish participants will enjoy Greece for one month!
They will work with a Greek organisation on a project which involves the care of forest areas in Xylokastro, a seaside town in the Peloponnese. It will be also a good opportunity for them to discover the Greek culture, meet new people from other countries in Europe and enjoy the beach and the sun!
Before their departure, we organised pre-departure sessions for the volunteers and a joing session for the volunteers and their guardians to disseminate information about their EVS project and also to address practical considerations, e.g. travel arrangements, money, etc. Non-formal pre-departure training was delivered by our long-term EVS volunteers to talk about the EVS programme and their fears, goals and expectations. They used non-formal learning methodologies, such as the tree of expectations and fears, the cultural iceberg and the curve of adaptation. They also explained the aims of EVS projects and the YouthPass certificate that they will receive at the end of their experience. In addition, they gave them information on cultural challenges, conflict management and practical tips for their stay.
This project will be a great opportunity for them, and hopefully, a stepping stone to further travels around Europe!