YEU Cyprus partnered with 6 other NGOs, to realize the “STAR: StoryTell A Right” Youth Exchange this past September. Specifically, the participants were from Cyprus, Greece, Egypt, Armenia, Estonia, Bulgaria and Ukraine. This resulted in a diverse group of 42 young people, who all came together in the village of Dymes from the 2nd until the 11th of September 2019, to explore the concept of human rights through the art of storytelling and video making. The project was supported by the European Commission, through the Erasmus+ program. The methods used during the youth exchange were based on Non- Formal Education and Experiential Learning.
The overall aim of the project was to improve the level of awareness of young people, including marginalised youth, in the topic of human rights, anti discrimination and social inclusion in European and non-European countries. Including countries with different religious background history and reality, we managed to promote diversity, intercultural and inter-religious dialogue by using non-formal educational activities. Participants were equipped with skills and digital competences, in order to be able to transfer the knowledge and fundamental gained through this exchange, to their local communities. Such skills included storytelling techniques, as well as, video making and editing.
The activities, built around the principles of non-formal education and experiential learning included: a workshop on human rights awareness and empathy, a contact with locals in Limassol and Dymes, workshops to unleash creativity and to start forming their stories, as well as workshops on photography, filming and video-editing. The participants have created five stories touching upon different aspects of human rights, coming from their personal experiences. After that, using different tools and techniques of video making, they have transform their stories into videos with social messages to raise the awareness in their local communities The videos and all the material can be found in the website of the Youth Exchange in the following link: https://yeucyprus.wixsite.com/star. Participants of course had leisure time activities related to European traditions such as a Culture nights.
Overall, on the last day of the project a public screening was organised in Dymes where participants had the chance to show their videos to an audience. An interesting discussion on what participants have learnt during the project and how they achieved to create those videos followed, that made all the group feel proud of their achievements.