Mountain Running Championship in Poland
– a GREAT MIXTURE OF YOUTH AND SPORT,
25-26 July 2015 – Międzygórze
During 21 days, Europejskie Forum Młodzieży hosted 33 volunteers from 12 different countries in the Large Scale EVS project YOUTH – Youngsters Originate Unique Team of Harmony, co-financed by the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA), in a frame of Action 1 (Large scale European Voluntary Service events) of ERASMUS+ Programme. Volunteers travelled from countries such as Portugal, Spain, Italy, Macedonia, Czech Republic, Latvia, Croatia, Ukraine, Turkey, Georgia, Romania and Austria. The main aim of this project was to help the Municipality of Bystrzyca Kłodzka and ULKS Sport Club “Bystrzyca Kłodzka” in the Organization of the XXIII Mountain Running Championship of Poland.
The second week of our Large Scale EVS project was mostly spent on the mountain, preparing the running tracks, arranging the marks for the paths, getting to know the tracks and check points of each run as well as meeting the people from the Municipality with whom we were cooperating. Together we managed to have everything ready in time for the Championship to go ahead as planned.
The two days went off without a hitch and the competition was most definitley a success. During the competition we had an information point where people could find out more about the voluntary service, EFM work, YOUTH project, amongst other useful information. We also provided activities for children with balloons and face painting.
After finishing the competition it was time to clean the mountain and leave it as well or even better than when we arrived on it. Despite some tiredness, teamwork and team spirit made this taskfly by and it was the final proof that the whole group was fully committed with the project. All volunteers and organizers also had a brief public meeting with the Mayor of Bystrzyca Klodzka in order to receive certificates of appreciation.
21 days went in the blink of an eye and the entire group of volunteers returned home, hopefully a bit richer than when they arrived in Poland. It was a great experience with a lot of different challenges but in the end it was all a learning curve.
In order for everything to go well, the first week was spent trying to integrate youngsters, allowing them to know each other, to exchange their cultures, thoughts and ideas. There was still a lot to do and it was important to create some strong bonds between us all. Polish lessons were provided so that the volunteers had the chance to learn the language but also to communicate better and integrate with the local community. Due to the fact that most of the activities took place on the mountain and that it was a sporting event, the first two days were spent training volunteers in First Aid .This way, volunteers were also prepared to help in case of the injury or accident of any participant or spectator of the competition, as well as of any volunteer.
During the weekend, the first morning of the championship was struck by a fast but heavy storm that made the paths a little slippery but still usable. Despite this, all volunteers were ready and on their post, supporting and encouraging the runners, providing them water whenever they needed and preventing them to run the wrong way.
Finally, the last days were spent preparing the final arrangements of the project, writing Youth Passes and Final Reports but also getting to know Poland a little better. The volunteers had the opportunity to see more of the Lower Silesia region as well as its mountains and hill tops thanks to some hiking.
Do you want to know more about YOUTH Large Scale EVS?
Watch the video with interviews to all participants and you’ll know all about it 🙂