Youth from Lithuania, Ukraine and Poland took part in the project Masters of the serious game. Serious gaming for the local community. Youth participation activities under the ERASMUS + Program. The main objective of the project is to acquire knowledge and civic competences important for active participation in the life of local communities and in local government activities.
Work during the project was carried out with the use of non-formal education tools, and its aim was to prepare participants for participatory activities and to increase awareness of how local communities in Poland, Lithuania and Ukraine function. The project aims to help answer the questions of how young people can participate in local life and what role they have to play.
36 young people, 12 people from each of three countries: Poland, Ukraine and Lithuania, took part in the 8-day international mobility called the World of Communities”, Game Masters Competition, which took place at the Environmental Education Center in Ożenna.
Participants built their community based on World of Community game scenarios. To win the game, they had to develop the community, expand public infrastructure, wisely manage community assets and start new businesses, develop professional skills, increase health and happiness. Moreover, during these joint efforts to build a sustainable community, each had to
face a variety of difficult life choices, thus learning to balance life and work, private interests and the common good.
During the mobility, meetings with experts and decision makers took place. Ukrainian journalist and psychologist Olena Zadorozhna led workshops on effective team communication and media education workshops on fake news. In addition, the participants visited the local government – the district office in Jasło. The young people met with the district head – the starost of the Jasło poviat, Adam Pawluś, who welcomed them to the hospitable Jasło Land. An important point of the meeting was visiting the building of the local government and organizational units, where young people could get acquainted with the operation of the Office from the perspective of the officials working in it.
During the mobility, the participants presented proposals of what young people in their communities can do. Ecology, healthy lifestyle and rehabilitation of people with disabilities were important topics for them. Participants wandered along the paths of the Magura National Park, visited the Museum of Nature, learned about the experience of working for the protection of nature as well as about the rich natural world of Ożenna. No less important topic is clean air and climate change. The discussion on this topic was led by Katarzyna Dedo, a forest educator. During the study visit to the hippotherapy center in Łężyny, young people met with hippotherapists who have extensive experience in the rehabilitation of people with disabilities
and in the implementation of integration activities. They showed how hippotherapy and contact with the horse work. Everyone had the opportunity to experience this method and find out why a horse can help overcome loneliness, various types of anxieties and fears.
In addition, integration, language and cultural activities were held, conducive to mutual understanding, international cooperation and the promotion of European integration. At the end, the participants received international Youthpass certificates – European certificates confirming the acquisition of specific competences as part of non-formal education.