The Youth Exchange "Volunteers Without Borders" in Slovenia

‘Volunteers without Borders’ an Erasmus+ Youth in Action project was located in the Mansion Rakičan near Murska Sobota, Slovenia. The project was held between 30th September and 8th October 2019, involving 37 Slovenian, Romanian, Croatian, Hungarian, Lithuanian and Estonian young people between 17 and 30 years old from different backgrounds and institutions. 

The main goals of the project were to familiarize participants with the concept of volunteering and the impact on the local environment, to develop their self-esteem and confidence and to get to know vulnerable groups including minorities of the Pomurje region, which the project helped through volunteering.

Our activities involved learning about volunteering work through practical examples. By connecting with the local environment, the participants of the project created activities that will have a positive impact on the people and their surroundings.

“The work you have done is very nice and I am proud to have international volunteers working here” - Dr. Aleksander Jevšek the mayor of Murska Sobota

Participants gained insightful knowledge into the living situation of those in need, and were able to help those who don’t normally seek assistance from others. They entertained the elderly with art projects and walks in the park, and participated in activities in the Fruits of Society centre (a place which connects youth with older members of the community through sharing their values). They also broke down cultural and social barriers by learning how to work in teams with people from different nationalities.

"One of the most important things this kind of project teaches you, is that you gain a totally different perspective of giving and receiving" - Kamile, Lithuanian participant

Volunteers from this project are responsible for returning to their communities, not only with new knowledge and enthusiasm but also with concrete action plans. Volunteers without Borders provided an opportunity to brainstorm future volunteer campaigns with other country members, to learn how to cook, paint, clean and garden for local residents and how to contribute to the wellbeing of elderly and disabled members of society.  

"I am very proud to be coordinator of this project. People were amazing, unique and special. The outputs that we have created are amazing and I am very thankful to everyone who participated and prepared this project with us. This wouldn't be possible without all 37 amazing youngsters. A big thank you goes to the City municipality of Murska Sobota, which saw our efforts and gave us an award for the best volunteer project of the year in City municipality of Murska Sobota for 2019"  – Marko, coordinator of the project and Slovenian group leader

"I had a chance to meet amazing people and spread tolerance in local and international community. But most important I had a chance to improve my competences and became a better person by helping those in need" – Željka, Croatian participant

"As a Roma person I had a chance to meet other people and improve my English. I am very thankful to Erasmus+ program for this opportunity" – Zlatko, Slovenian participant

"I found out what is the true meaning of this projects that Erasmus+ offers to us. Its to learn from each other and to spread tolerance among young people. I am very happy that I got this opportunity to help in this project" – Blaž, volunteer from Slovenia


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