The main aim of the session was to present local perspectives and situation in each of the countries.
To do that, we had work in our national teams and answer 6 of the questions:
1) What is the current situation in your country?
2) What has changed during the past 10-15 years?
3) What is the attitude of educators and youthworkers? How the educations system deals with EH education?
4) What are the policies adopted to ensure emotional well- being?
5) Is mental health considered as important as physical health by the state and by the individuals? Is it promoted at all?
6) What is the perception of people?
After a short Web research, we have found that that actually, the situation is similar in all of the countries. People become more and more aware of mental disorders, however, the situation is not improving. Around ¼ of people from all countries suffer from at least one mental disease/disorder. Some of the countries trying their best to implement National programmes to fight against it, but in the most of the cases, it is not successful. Still, in the villages and remote areas, these people are seen as crazy.
We had a really nice time doing that task and got to know a lot about the current situation and realities in all of the countries.
Article by: Justyna Szajda (Poland) & Petar Dobrodolac (Serbia)
Working on common definitions
After the lunch break we gathered together feeling almost energized 😉
We start one of the best workshop with Ritsa. She puts two papers on the floor in which there is written Agree or Disagree. Ritsa and Andrea started to read statements and we had to move ourselves around the room if we either agreed or disagreed. After choosing one side we discussed deeply about the different point of views we had.
Some topics we touched upon during this workshop were: the possible causes of mental illnes, the fact that everyone can be affected no matter the conditions, the difference between depression and anxiety, the symptoms of anorexia and bulimia and so much more. The workshop was really interesting and useful and we took our time to discuss further about the statements. It was interesting to hear different viewpoints and how people interpret the statements.
Article by: Claudia Sarais (Italy) & Bobby Rajed Choudhury (UK)
What affects me?
WHAT AFFECTS ME?
What are our emotional triggers? If you feel that suddenly your heart rate is up, blood pressure is raising and your breathing fastens, there has to be touched some emotional trigger. It is something the others person has said, or done? Was it some kind of sound, act, smell or something else? Is it something you know, or are aware of? what do you feel now? But before that… Why you are having those feelings? What does the other person feel at the same time? Do you always understand your own feelings and the cause of them? Can you understand other people’s feelings? Do you feel understood by the others? Let’s not forget that we have our own understanding of feelings and situations based of our own experiences. When you know someone since long time, you see his feelings/acts repeating and you can understand and see the cause of them. Your body is revealing a lot of you.
If you are sitting crossed arms you are closed. If you turn your body towards your partner you are present, listnening with interest and so on. Why are the negative feelings hard to manage for us?
Is the same for every person? If some of us cant deal with sorrow or anger, then other can’t stand whining or complaining. There is a myth that mens cant stand womens tears. Maybe they just do not know what to do and start avoid this kind of situations. A person can be isolate, sad, depress, it can be a continuous state.
Bullying in the youth life is with different levels and extents. Parents can be with high or low expetations and kids can suffer of low self esteem.
Breaking ups and school bullyng. A totally new level is given by social media bullying and hate speech.
All this can create for everyone a lot of menthal healt problems. Eating disorders, anxiety, depression, self harming, suicide thoughts and acts. Everyone can do at least little things to prevent the worst. Do not walk avay if you see a person who needs help, stand by him and support. All this was discussed and analyzed during this sessions.
Article by: Andrea Rega (Italy) & Maria Jarvis (Estonia)
Intercultural evening II
6 different countries came together to share their inspirational amazing cultural experience, traditions, cultural heritage and customs: diffrent languages, colourful flags, unique traditional food. Lithuania shared their delicacy, special biscuits and interactive quiz, where others had oppurtunity to know more about popular lithuanian sayings and interesting facts. Kosovo gave a taste of alcohol free beer.
Albania flew the flag with an eagle, national sign of Albania, traditional „rake“ and tea. Macedonia brought crisps of penaut. Also participants had opportunity to taste traditional polish drinks, meat and sweets. UK expressed their multiculturalism and diversity in their country. Greek presented their traditional tradional dishes and gave all participants a small gift of natural Greek olive oil. Overall the whole experience was inspirational, educational and enjoyable!