Grundvig days in Zagreb – 1st partnership meeting / Zagreb 23rd – 26th October 2012
Grundvig is the European Programme which connects people of different age and from different countries, to help them get to know each other, to learn about their cultures, manners and lands. The way to carry on this programme is to visit different countries and teach or learn a special skill through workshops or in a fun way. Most of the activities are based on volunteer work. In Zagreb, Croatia, was the first host country in this partnership. Visitors came from Iceland, the
United Kingdom, Poland, Lithuania, Portugal, Romania and Bulgaria. At the beginning each team, a leader from their institution and a few volunteers, had to introduce their country, institution and their work. Presentations went as they usually do except for the Lithuanian team. They showed us their national dance and Mrs Rasa Lukosiunaite sang a song in their national with her beautiful voice. Than we had to learn the dance! It was really fun and relaxing. The program of the meeting was made with a lot of spirit.
The most serious part was a Computer Workshop. We were taught how to make a Web site, a Skype conference and so on.
In the Language Workshop the goal was to make an International Sound Bank and a Croatian Language Survival Kit for going around the town. Everybody who was there knows how much fun it was!
But the funniest workshop was a Drama’s Workshop. From their classroom you could hear the roars of laughter. The
participants had to show different emotions or ideas even the experience by movement or mimics and sometimes by voice. It wasn’t easy, but it was very funny!
The sightseeing part of the visit put the visitors’ Croatian language skills, which they got in the Language Workshop, to the test. We went through the city in three small groups. Our volunteers had to present the city providing some really short bits of information. The sight-seeing was interrupted by little games; how fast a group could say what the mummer demonstrated, how to conduct robots, how to ask for something in Croatian and read a verse of Slap/Waterfall by a Croatian poet Dobriša Cesarić in Croatian language. In my and Ana’s group, we were laughing all the time. Željko and Neda joined another group and from what I hear they were having a wonderful time as well.
On the last day of the meeting a TV crew arrived for make an interview, which I saw on TV two weeks later. It was well prepared and informative.
Every day visitors had a joint dinner and my opinion is that it was all very good. The volunteers who have an experience in visiting other countries were better than us who hadn’t had such an experience before. But, it will be better next time, I am sure.
And finally, each team of visitors will have to pass on the new skills and knowledge to their own local communities and spread connections onto new groups of people. We will be learning from each other and about each other!
In conclusion, I would repeat it!
Dubrava Cultural Centre
Urban Walkers’ Club
Zagreb, 6th November 2012