«EUSOLA (European Solidarity in Action)
– Humanitarian Aid Project in a region outside the EU»
The project meeting took place in the beautiful capital city of Budapest, Hungary.
The hosting school of Varga István Ker. és Közg. SZKI (School in Budapest-Hungary) turned the participation and the stay of students and teachers from twelve countries, into an unforgettable experience.
The Hungarian teachers made every effort to offer a warm hospitality. Each teacher took on a concrete task and everything worked out perfectly.
The Headmaster of the school, Dr. Varga Zoltan addressing the assembly.
Dr. Varga Zoltan listening carefully to Dr. Eleni Theocharous MEP (Member of European Parliament) who kindly accepted the invitation to give a presentation.
“The iron lady”, Gabriella (Aka Gabi) Jekel, in action. The Hungarian coordinator of the project, with her colleagues and of course her excellent students were excited to welcome all their friends from so many different parts of Europe.
Ulrich Besirske from Munich, Germany, exchanging views with Dr. Eleni Theocharous MEP (Member of European Parliament).
Ulrich who spread his great enthusiasm to all participants.
The Cypriot students' project proposal leaflet. Teachers Popi Nicolaidou and Stella Lantsia are extremely proud of the efforts made by their students.
The students from Cyprus, Nektaria-Ioanna Antoniadou, Alexandros Gust, Alexandra Pappa, Adonis Vasiliou and Thelma Louca.
Every time I have the chance to witness a European Educational Project meeting, I honestly realize how visionary those European Academics were, who established all these educational projects among the European schools. I honestly look up to those visionary European personalities, Comenius, Erasmus and Grundtvig who gave their names to educational projects. Projects that promote the European values.
The benefits of such projects in building a common goal and a European identity is obvious and there is no need to enhance further thoughts on it. Last week I had the great chance to watch such a program in Budapest, Hungary.
The project under the title «EUSOLA (European Solidarity in Action) – Humanitarian Aid Project in a region outside the EU» focused on raising awareness of the position of underprivileged countries and the work of humanitarian organisations and put a joint humanitarian project into practice.
The aim of the first year is to accomplish the concept of EUSOLA. As pedagogical objectives the pupils acquire some knowledge about humanitarian aid projects, development policies, the role of NGOs and other organisations, about the situation of underprivileged people, especially of their age group. In cooperation with partners from the participating countries, as well as NGOs, a common framework to deliver a project of humanitarian aid in a region outside the EU will be created.
The students of each school from 12 different countries (Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Portugal, Slovenia and Turkey (in alphabetical order), developed and presented their own humanitarian project proposal.
The slogan «Together – we achieve more»
EUSOLA is a project that aims on fighting against poverty and social exclusion. This logo represents progression, hope and a “way” to achieve happiness. If we look at this logo upside down, we can see a river flowing from a spring. On each side of this river there are paths and next to those paths there’s somehow a “green space” representing leafs and trees.
The Cypriot team introducing themselves on the first day.
A message through a video by Mrs. Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, was heard in the meeting.Listening the remarkable message through a video by Mrs. Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth.
The teachers having very good and productive discussions.
Stella Lantsia (standing) looking for her students.
In a selection process the students of the participating schools chose the Portuguese proposal project, which has to do with aid for a school in Angola.
The Cyprus proposal of the Archbishop Makarios III Lyceum, Dasoupolis, Nicosia-Cyprus, was by far a very well prepared, organized and presented project, for humanitarian aid for Chokombedzi, Zimbabwe, with the title “Break the Circle”.
Alexander Guest and Alexandra Pappa presenting their proposal “Break the Circle”
Alexandra Pappa presenting their proposal “Break the Circle”.
The presentation by the Italian team.
The leader of the Finnish group explaining their proposals.
Hungarian Petra Haralambusz (Greek origin by father) in the middle with her friends.
A group of students from different countries.
All students have made a significant contribution to all the activities of the Project.
Teachers taking notes...
After the nomination of the Portuguese project, the aim of EUSOLA is that all the participating schools all together put one selected joint humanitarian project into practice and fulfill the aims of the project.
Active involvement and keen interest by all participants.Smiling happily from left, Marta Strmec (Slovenia) Fadime Sezgek Dudak (Turkey) Alexandra Kocevar (Slovenia) and Gamze unal Aksoy (Turkey).
Absolute enjoyment of the moments!
The team from Slovenia.
The Hungarian students.
The Finnish group.
Listening to all the proposals carefully.
Adonis Vasiliou, a computer expert is preparing to transmit the presentations live, so that the students in their countries could watch everything through this streaming.
German teachers Sibylle Paetzmann and Sezgin Inceel with their students and Dr. Eleni Theocharous MEP (Member of European Parliament).
A free exchange of views and ideas.
A little bit of entertainment with beautiful songs for peace and the world by Sezgin Inceel.
Students from Turkey singing beautiful songs.
Dr. Eleni Theochaous, MEP (Member of European Parliament), who flew from Brussels to talk about the NGO “Volunteer Doctors” and their activities in different parts of the world.
She participated in a great number of medical and other missions in war zones, and worked as a volunteer surgeon, under mainly primitive conditions, with wounded people, soldiers, children, civilians, as well as the general population who were victims of war, natural disasters or poverty.
Additionally, she is heavily involved in fighting AIDS, poverty, famine, deforestation and other environmental issues, working closely with local authorities and non-governmental organizations, giving lectures and helping local institutions in many countries.
«The development of the third world will have major benefits for the European Union as such, while job creation in developing countries can inhibit the uncontrolled migration to the EU and reduce volatility in poor countries», said Eleni Theocharous MEP.«The basic precondition for development is the establishment, restoration and improvement of democracy and democratic institutions as well as the guarantee of human rights and the rights of children whilst the active involvement of civil society organisations in formulating and monitoring public policy should be strengthened and maximised", added Theocharous.
Poverty is defined as the inability to afford basic human needs: nutrition, clean water, health care, education, clothing and shelter and it is estimated that this involves almost 51% of Sub-Saharan African and 40.3% of South Asian population.
From left Gamze unal Aksoy (Turkey) Christina (Italy) Fadime Sezgek Dudak (Turkey) Popi Nicolaidou (Cyprus)
In general the meeting was successful all the twelve projects presented were interesting.
Having and enjoying traditional Hungarian food in the school restaurant.
The two teachers from Slovenia, Marta Strmec and Alexandra Kocevar.
Dr. Eleni Theocharous listening to the students and enjoying the conversation with them.
Dr Eleni Theocharous left the same day. Picture taken with Popi Nicolaides, Zsofia devai and the officer in charge of the school.
Hungarian , beautiful traditional folklore costumes.
Folklore dancing performance.
One, two, three lets go...A particular camera lover, Gamze unal Aksoy, a cheerful dancer and photographer at the same time.
Folk music and dance.
People dancing, smiling and having real fun.
The school buffet (BUFE).
One night was devoted to the Hungarian wine in a cosy wine bar next to the Danube River...
Popi and Stella enjoying the Hungarian wine which has a history dating back to at least Roman times.
Exploring the gorgeous capital city of Budapest despite the severe cold!
Ready, set...go! Crossing the road to the museum.
The Cypriot team together with Hungarian students during the guided tour of the city.Popi Nicolaides, Gabor Pinter, Stella Latntsia and Gabriella (Aka Gabi) Jekel, on the top of the Citadel.
In a historical site of the city.
Having fun and enjoying the beauties of the city.
Learning about the rich history and culture of Hungary.Gabriella (Aka Gabi) Jekel and Gabor Pinter leading the group through the streets of the city.
In the impressive building of the House of Parliament.
The Building of the Hungarian Parliament is the seat of the National Assembly of Hungary, one of Europe's oldest legislative buildings, a notable landmark of the city.
A little bit more time with Hungarian friends, just before the return back home...
This was the signal that the fantastic trip had to come to an end. A great opportunity, perfect venue, wonderful people and above all...the best friendships!
We're sending our greetings to all of the teachers and students from all twelve countries; and compliments to our Hungarian friends for their warm welcome and hospitality.