Youth Exchange Blog: "Green yourself" in Florence by Helena

I decided to join with this Erasmus youth exchange project because my friend was searching for another Estonian team member and I decided to take time off from my everyday life and go and learn something new. I’ve always been interested in European Union and how some things are working. With this project it was all about climate change and how the EU can stop that. It was my first time participating in Erasmus projects and I really enjoyed it. Because it was my first time, I didn’t have any expectations and mostly I was hoping to make new friends and learn more about different cultures.

Before the exchange we put together the program for Estonian workshop and Estonian cultural night. It was a success mostly, but some games were difficult to play, for example the game we brought, named “Climate call”.

During my youth exchange I learned so much about Italy, Hungary, Spain and Greece. The most interesting part for me was discussing how different countries have done their garbage-management. For example most of the countries don’t have as good bottle recycling systems as we (Estonians) do. It was also good to discuss in a group, how different countries could learn from each other and how there’s room for improvement. For example EU countries could work together when it comes to recycling and some countries can teach others to be more successful in this topic. I also got to reflect on my own habits and how I could do better in everyday life, for example I don’t need to buy so much stuff that I don’t need.

At the beginning I was a bit afraid to make new connections and I stayed together with Estonian group. In the end we all got to know each other, some connections were stronger than others and when the youth exchange ended, a few tears were shed. I really liked the activities that we had in Florence, we were treasure hunting and making interviews with the group. I would really like to go again and of course I’d recommend this kind of youth exchange to all of my friends.