Be Eat Fit Repeat!
An opportunity for 30 youngsters from Poland, Italy, Spain, Bulgaria, Turkey and Croatia to discuss healthy eating habits, the importance of physical activity and mental wellbeing.
That’s what happened from 6th to 13th of October, 2018, in Bystrzyca Kłodzka, Poland.
Coordinated by Europejskie Forum Młodzieży and co-financed by Erasmus + program, Be Eat Fit Repeat Youth Exchange held activities that went from cooking different dishes, creating new sport categories and discovering the nature of the region to an “unplugged” walk which dismissed the presence of gadgets or anything other than the will of the participants
Ready for a story about those 8 days?
Here it goes 😉
After some games to build the group atmosphere and to promote the integration, it was quiz time! On “Meeting the program” the participants had the chance to know more about Erasmus +, especially EVS and youth Exchanges. Divided in groups, youngsters shared their ideas and got to learn more about program in an interactive way.
It all began with the arrival of the groups on the 6th of October and on this thing of traveling abroad – and in group – there is always a big possibility for mistaking a train stop or to go out in the wrong place. Part of the experience, so to speak.
Having arrived through the Saturday 6th, the groups had the first contact with each other on Sunday and that’s when the integration began.
And what about expectations?! – Why have we decided to take part in “Be Eat Fit Repeat”?
Knowing everyone’s motivation and expectations was very important as it gave us all a bigger picture of what we wanted to achieve as a group and each one’s involvement and will to achieve it.
It was a good start… and it took everyone to Bystrzyca! 😉
What better way to know a place and its history than by a city game?!
Groups made, riddles in hand and… Action!
An afternoon dedicated to go around the town and solving riddles that took participants from historical places to traditional and very local places, with a little bit of gymnastics and a little bit of music, which finished in an evening that had everyone sharing the findings of the city game, among laughs and comfortable group bonding!
The day went by and had as many different activities as possible! The spirit of the group grew stronger by taking part in activities that went around the topics of the youth exchange.
The third day of activities had everyone “running around the kitchen”. It was the day to discuss sustainability and to reflect on the products we buy and consume, as well as the background of the cuisine of each country.
After reflecting on the aspects that influence each country’s cuisine during the morning, it was time to take the bus again to Bystrzyca Kłodzka and for the participants to go around and try to find the needed ingredients to cook a meal, having in mind the topic of sustainability.
And what better way to finish the day than by having 30 people in a kitchen and cooking together. It was “Sustainability in the kitchen” and among chaos there was the team spirit, the fun and the food that everyone shared in the end.
For some it was the first time trying Spanish food… or Croatian food… or from Turkey, Bulgaria, Poland, Italy…
This was the day for the “Youth Olympic Games”, a special sort of games, based on the imagination and creativity of the participants. There were games that involved brooms, others that involved running through some sort of obstacles and all of them involving fun.
In order to put the games into action, the group headed to a sports facility in Bystrzyca, where either individually or in teams, everyone disputed the games.
A fun and active afternoon culminating in an evening with songs from each participating country.
As the 5h day came it was time to go to the Table Mountains!
A schedule hike on the mountains of the region that allowed everyone to enjoy the contact with the nature at the same time getting to know a little bit more about legends and tales of the region.
Mental wellbeing is a key factor for our general health and- although not the only way to achieve it –outdoor activities are one of the best ways to keep ourselves healthy. That was one of the goals of the activity, to give the chance to participants to have contact with nature, understanding its value and importance in our lives while at the same time raising awareness to the care and responsibility each and every one has towards it.
In a blink of an eye we were already leaving behind the sunset in the mountains and visiting Polanica Zdrój. As the day finished it was time to get prepared for a 6th day of activities!
It was the right time for a debate. We had gone already through healthy eating habits, outdoor activities and mental wellbeing, which means better prepared to discuss the topics with more depth.
Joining students and teachers in Zespół Szkół Społecznych – in Kłodzko – participants got the chance to debate “habits and addictions” and consequent impacts in our lives. The discussion went from positive and negative habits to social media, among other subjects. The curiosity of youngsters and the will to express their own opinions, as diverse as they were, enriched the debate, which was one of the goals of the project, to encourage youngsters to be critical and to express their thought and ideas.
But was not all from Kłodzko!
As from the third day of activities, participants were preparing materials for a street campaign, the afternoon of that 6th day was “Get up and Move!” time.
Going around the central streets of Kłodzko and its market square, participants engaged with the local community, exchanging with them ideas about healthy lifestyle, sports and so on.
From one corner we could hear groups singing some motto while on another corner someone was offering apples to passersby as a way to raise awareness to the topic. There were children, teens and elderly in conversation with the groups and a mix of English and polish all around.
“Get up and Move!” – Yes!
And how to put in words the experiences and learning of a week?! That was the challenge of the last day of activities. But not the first and biggest challenge!
The day raised bright and sunny challenging the group for a morning walk, but not any kind of morning walk. Participants were asked to leave behind gadgets and all electronic devices and to enjoy their presence and the surroundings in silence. It was “Unplugged” and for a couple of hours it was just a group of contemplative human beings and the nature.
As some of the youngsters would say later, “the only pity was not to be able to photograph the beauty around”!
As it finished, it was time to plug again for the rest of the day.
Directed to the dissemination and visibility of the project, the last day was for the writing of articles and the dissemination on social media, as well as on the pages of partner organizations.
It was also the time to speak more about Erasmus +, as in the first day – and start the preparation of the youthpasses.
Some people say time flies and maybe that’s true. An 8 days program went by just like that and suddenly a seminar room is full of happy people dancing, singing and hugging, celebrating a project that brought them together.
If a youth exchange is about the good spirit of a group, which it also is, “Be Eat Fit Repeat” totally achieved that. But it was more than that. It was the seeds of curiosity about sustainability and about mental wellbeing. About sports but even more about the importance of nature in our lives.
It was a cycle and it’s purpose is that that cycle can be Repeat(ed) over and over again in everyone’s lives!