This was my sixth Erasmus+ Youth Exchange. I decided to participate in this one because I am passionate about sustainability and ways to be more sustainable in my personal life and in my country.
One part of Youth Exchanges I love is cultural nights where every group makes traditional foods of their country and shares them with everyone. This was also an idea I presented before the exchange. During the projects I shared my ideas on sustainability from a biologist’s perspective, as I study genetic engineering. Though I am no expert, I hope my thoughts on organic farming and other sorts of agriculture and also green ways of living were insightful.
Other than learning more about different cultures in general, I also learned a lot about food production and agriculture in Italy. I found it very interesting. The topic that was the most impactful for me was human rights and child labour. I was not aware of a lot of social issues that are far bigger and closer to home than I thought. Though I have studied food technology to some extent, it was interesting to see how dairy products, like cheese and chocolate, are made. I was also able to work on my social skills like self expression and communicating.
I believe this exchange had great topics and a wonderful location. I enjoyed being in nature, visiting farms, and being active throughout the week. I really like that most of the meals were vegetarian which is very much in line with the topic of the exchange. I think these aspects I have just listed should remain to some extent. I would have liked a more clear plan of the week so everyone would be aware when and what is happening.
I would definitely recommend this to my friends who are interested in the topic of sustainability. For me the most memorable aspects of the exchange were the people with diverse professional backgrounds and areas of expertise, extraordinary location, and the topic of human rights. The latter being the most emotional one for me personally.