Sophia’s story of the Youth Exchange Act4Change

Sophia took part as German participant in our Youth Exchange Act4Change in Tharandt, Germany

“When I arrived at Tharandt, a beautiful place in the middle of nowhere, I had no idea what would happen next, what kind of people I would meet, or what experiences I would make. But somehow I had a good feeling about it and that was enough.

I can still remember the first night – introducing myself to so many people, asking them for their names and of course forgetting them two minutes later. It’s hard to explain the exact feelings I had in those moments but basically, it felt like everything was possible – and it was – I got “adopted” into the Croatian team one day after arrival.

When „I“ is replaced by „We“ even Illness becomes Wellness

But of course, life is life and things don’t work out as you planned them to. People started getting sick and we had some Covid cases. Being sick at your home with your loved ones is a struggle, but now imagine being sick in a different country, where you don’t know the language, the culture, the lifestyle.

Now you might think that this ruined the exchange, but actually, you are quite wrong. Yes, of course, it would have been nice if everyone would have been healthy and happy all the time, but the moments where every one of us was feeling miserable (health-wise not mentally) were the moments that let me truly connect with the people on a deeper level. The support, trust and care for each other were heartwarming on another level and it was, what made this Erasmus so unique.

Thank you to everyone who made this project so special and especially the DOPE team <3″

“Meeting 36 strangers from all over Europe and learning, laughing, living with them for ten days straight, sounds crazy to you? Well, it is, but so so rewarding too.”

Sophia, Participant