People often think that buying expensive cars, trendy clothes, and fancy gadgets can make their lives easier and happier. Sure, luxury products make people happy, but that materialistic happiness is short-lived. After a short while of the purchase, we forget the excitement of the product we bought. Contrary to popular belief, being entangled in the never-ending cycle of consumerism doesn’t make people happy, it only makes people long for more. However, collecting moments and memories, instead of material things, can lead to a lifetime of happiness and help us govern our behavior and shape our personality. Collecting moments are free of charge because it is priceless. Sahipsiz Hayvanlari Koruma ve Yasatma Dernegi as an association for the welfare of stray cats and dogs will be the coordinating and sending organisation will provide a long lasting memory with excitement, happiness, intangible satisfaction, and growth for the Turkish volunteers who will participate in 2 short term (59 days) activities in “Common Sense” Youth Organization (CSYO) in Sumgait, Azerbaijan and Tunus’taki Association Solidarite Echange et Developpement (ASED) in Sousse, Tunisia with the Erasmus+ European Voluntary Service project “Collect the Moments”. The project aims to protect the environment, help to develop sick, disabled, orphan and poor children personally and socially, and give opportunity to our volunteers to have experience to live and work in a different culture, recognize their own abilities and gain new competences.
The 1st activity will take place in Sumgait, Azerbaijan where once was one of the 10 ugliest towns in the world just after the iron curtain times because of being the industrial town with full of factories. Now people started to make the town more environmentally friendly with so many projects and events. The objectives: – awareness on factors that pollute the environment – decomposition of recyclable wastes – recycling activities with children and young people – painting garbage bins with children and young people – organizing seminars, conferences and workshops that increase environmental awareness in schools and youth centers.
The 2nd activity will take place in Sousse, Tunisia where is a touristic attraction with its natural Mediterranean beauty and rich history, which needs to be protected as well as the needy children in the centers. The objectives: – organizing fun and educational activities with hospitalized sick children, children in suburbs and rural areas, and children with disabilities and orphans – collection of garbage in the gardens in the public areas and the beach – planting flowers and trees – minor repairs and paintings in the neglected areas – learning calligraphy.
The volunteers who will participate in the project will be 16 young people, who are not involved in the working life, aged between 18 – 30 years old from Turkey. For most of them, it will be their first time to participate in non-formal learning environment. They will be prepared for their EVS activity before they start by the coordinating and sending organisation and they will be oriented in the first week of their activities and non-formal methods such as brainstroming, open space, group work, peer work, lecture, etc. will be used by the project coordinators and the mentors of the receiving organisations.
The activities of each of the volunteer will be disseminated through the websites and social media channels of all the participating organisations. Our project “Collect the Moments” meets the objectives of the Erasmus+ in many ways. These are: key competences of the young people will be developed, involving disadvantaged youth and promoting active citizenship, intercultural dialogue, inclusion and solidarity. With the activities of our volunteers, there will be a cleaner environment, less wasted items by promoting recycling, next generation who will have awareness on environment, disadvantaged children who will be raised in better conditions as happy and conscious citizens which will be the long term impacts of the project. The volunteers will be more self-confident, more aware of the needs of the disadvantaged children, environmental issues and historical values and they will have priceless memories and so many stories to be told with the moments they collect in their activities.
VOLUNTEERS IN ACTIVITY 1:
1st Flow: Mehmet Emin Küçükkalyon ve Onur Koca
Mehmet Emin Küçükkalyon and Onur Koca participated in the activity in Sumgait, Azerbaijan between 16 January 2019 – 15 March 2019. Mehmet Emin and Onur made nests and water containers for the stray animals, they feed them and they raised plants in the plastic pots at “Common Sense” Youth Organization during their 2-month-long activity. They gave trainings and workshops to start the follow-up activity. Also they experienced the Azerbaijani culture and made new friends.
2nd Flow: Derya Yavuz and Namık Cankur
Derya Yavuz ve Namık Cankur were in Sumgait between 7 April 2019 and 4 June 2019. Derya and Namık worked on environmental issues with children and young people in Sumgait for 2 months. They gave conferences in the schools and participated in ecological cleaning activities. This activity helped Derya and Namık to improve their personal, social and occupational development and also the hosting organisation, Common Sense Youth Organization was able to work more with the participation of our volunteers. Many thanks to Erasmus+, our Azerbaijani partner and Derya and Namık for announcing our name in the European platform.
3rd Flow: Umutcan Baş and Elif Kara
Umutcan Baş and Elif Kara were in Sumgait between 20 June 2019 – 17 August 2019. Umutcan and Elif managed workshops to save the environment and the nature, introduced camp equipments, showed fauna and flora of Azerbaijan and learned Azerbaijani culture. They developed themselves in a personal and social way with this experience.
4th Flow: Mustafa Ayata and Emel Külekçioğlu
Mustafa Ayata and Emel Külekçioğlu were in Sumgait in August – October 2019. Mustafa and Emel worked on the activities for young people and children for protecting the environment and recycling. Emel, as an industrial designer, generated homes for the stray animals and decorative flower pots out of plastic bottles and taught young people and children how to make them. Our volunteers made a lot of friends. They experienced the Azerbaijani culture. This activity helped Mustafa and Emel to their improve personal, social and occupational development. Many thanks to our young people for their active participation in their activity.
VOLUNTEERS IN ACTIVITY 2:
1st Flow: Merve Buse Bal and Rabia Koç
Merve Buse Bal and Rabia Koç were in Sousse, Tunisia between 12 March – 09 May 2019. Buse and Rabia participated in the activities for the personal and social development of the children and the young people in the schools and youth centers. Once a week they worked in the flower garden. They cooked dinner for the poor during Ramadan. They learned Tunisian Arabic. They introduced them our culture. They made a lot of friends.
Many thanks for Rabia and Buse for their outstanding efforts in Tunisia.
2nd Flow: Aliyenur Erdal and Hakan Aksu
Aliyenur Erdal and Hakan Aksu were in Sousse, Tunisia between 11 May – 8 July 2019. Aliyenur and Hakan organised fun and educational games for children, participated in the environmental activities and cooked Ramadan dinner for the public in our partner Association Solidarite Echange et Developpement in Sousse, Tunisia. They learned Arabic, had excursions in Tunisia and the Sahara Desert and experienced Tunisian culture. Also they introduced the Turkish culture. They were able to develop themselves in personal, social and occupational way in a foreign culture with this activity.
3rd Flow: Melek Yağlıdere and Muhammed Fatih Şahin
Melek Yağlıdere and Muhammed Fatih Şahin were in Sousse between 12 July – 8 September 2019. Melek and Muhammed organised fun and educational games for children, participated in the environmental activities. They learned Arabic, had excursions in Tunisia and experienced Tunisian culture. Also they introduced the Turkish culture. They were able to develop themselves in personal, social and occupational way in a foreign culture with this activity.
4th Flow: Rıza Yanık and Sefer Yılmaz
Rıza Yanık and Sefer Yılmaz were in Sousse between 14 October – 11 December 2019. Rıza and Sefer organised activities to support the cognitive and psychomotor development of the orphan, disabled, sick and poor children. They also participated in the environmental activities in Sousse. This activity helped Rıza and Sefer a lot for their personal, social and occupational development.
Many thanks to our youngsters for their outstanding efforts.