Hello, my name is Margarita Karaivanova and I am a first-year medical student in the University of Heidelberg, Germany. During my semester break in March I had the unique opportunity of participating in an Erasmus+ youth exchange in Guadeloupe, a French overseas territory in the Caribbean. The principle objective of the project, called “Youth Ecopreneuers Lab” and bringing together 36 young enthusiastic people from Bulgaria, France, Greece, Romania, Poland, Latvia and Guadeloupe, was to raise awareness on issues, regarding youth entrepreneurship, ecology, sustainability and the growing percentage of NEETs among young people.
Through a series of activities, workshops and discussions we were introduced to the innovative method of design thinking, managed to improve our teamwork abilities and soft skills and got to be inspired by the highly motivational speeches, held by established entrepreneurs, who shared their valuable experience. We all came to realize that an entrepreneurial spirit is crucial to success not only in business but also in everything we embark on. Together we managed to arrive at solutions for the issues, regarding the young and their involvement in the international environment.
Moreover, we got to know the huge cultural heritage of the picturesque town we stayed in. Guadeloupe welcomed us heartily with its beautiful beaches, stunning views, breathtaking sunsets, warm tropical rains and exotic wildlife. But that wasn’t all – during the intercultural evenings we learned a lot about each country’s customs, national songs and dances, traditional food and beverages and managed to deepen our knowledge about the great diversity of the European Union. And just like that, somewhere in the middle of crystal-clear Caribbean waters and the endless blue sky we created long-lasting friendships and unforgettable memories…
Thank you Alternativi International for giving us the unique chance to visit this fascinating destination, and Coconutwork for organizing such an enriching and exemplary project! It was an exquisite experience beyond comparison, that we will always remember. Therefore, I would encourage every young person, willing to explore the world and expand their horizons, not to hesitate for a single moment and apply for an Erasmus+ project. Try to take the most of it and I promise you won’t regret it!