From 7 to 15 August, 25 young people from Sicily, Greece and Catalonia took part in the youth exchange ‘Adarró, + 2500 ago’ at the Molí de Mar, on the lighthouse beach of Vilanova i la Geltrú (Catalonia, Spain).

The main aim of this youth exchange was to learn how to live in a more respectful and friendly way with nature in an urban environment, through two topics: what we can learn from nature and what we can learn from history to live better, in a more sustainable, respectful and healthier way with the natural environment.

The activities showed the entire group that many challenges and worries are common in the three countries, although the level of awareness and the number of initiatives carried out by young people are different in each of the countries. They visited‘l’Hort de l’avi’, presented by a participant of the youth exchange, an initiative of ecological urban agriculture where the group had the chance to known some techniques and benefits of bioconstruction as well.

The group also learnt about other local activities, such as the Platform ‘Salvem l’Ortoll’, which organized a small work camp where the group helped to clean path walks for horses in their way from the Pyrenees to the coast.

The group had the time to enjoy from the traditional festival of la Geltrú and to visit the ruins of the Iberian-Roman settlement of Adarró, which gives the name to the youth exchange, and to the Museum Víctor Balaguer. At the Iberian settlement, the group performed a concert (the first one after more than 2 centuries?) and, at the museum, visited the archives.

The timetable of the youth exchange was full of activities, and the most appreciated by the participants were the treasure hunting game to discover the city and the making of video campaigns, that despite the lack of time and resources, gave good results. Besides, divided in small groups, the participants enjoyed other activities, such us design of a museum dedicate to learning about nature, composing a song about permaculture and defining together a new youth exchange, that we hope to organize as soon as possible with more countries involved.

According to many participants, this youth exchange had been fruitful to meet new friends, improve communicative, language and teamwork skills, and develop creativity through interaction, exchange of ideas and living all together for one long week.

The youth exchange, coordinated by Fundació Catalunya Voluntaria, in partnership with NGOs Associazione Culturale Arci Strauss (Mussomeli, Sicily) and United Societies of Balkans (Thessaloniki) thanks to the support of Erasmus+ program of the European Commission, in the frames of the European Year for Cultural Heritage.