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🇮🇹 "Mural" - 1-9.10.2023, Marina Davoli (CZ), Calabria, Italy

Updated: Dec 6, 2023

One of the greatest privileges in the modern world, and especially in Europe is having an opportunity to meet and bond with people from different nationalities and cultures. Erasmus+ project funded by the European Union, brings young people from different backgrounds together and provides them with non-formal education and a safe environment to share their traditions.

The title of the project in Calabria, Italy held from 1-9 October was “Mural” and it discussed and handled the problem of offline and online hate speech. People from 6 different countries, who were carefully selected made their way to the south of Italy to participate in activities and discuss this important social topic through art activities and non-formal education methods.

During these 9 days, the group has bonded through art sessions, personal discussions, team-building activities, scavenger hunts around the city and La Familia dinners. During the scavenger hunt, everyone broke out of their comfort zones and spoke to the friendly locals about the astonishing culture and history of the area. It was an adventurous journey from Soverato, Italy as we had to use teamwork and look after each other in order to navigate through the city.

The concept of “The human library” done by the participants consists of sharing your personal life story that you feel has shaped you as a human being. Participants who took the role of “Books” were carefully listened to by the “Readers”. Our human books opened up to the readers revealing vulnerability which left a lot of readers touched and in tears. Stories about discrimination, sexual harassment, hate speech, rejection and how to overcome them were revealed.

This was the moment everyone was overflowing with emotions and even though they had only known each other for a few days, they felt much closer and familiar.

We expressed ourselves through different kinds of art during the project. We painted canvases in teams to depict all the consequences and negative impact hate speech leaves us with.

We had a blast connecting with Claudio Chiaravalloti a local graffiti artist in Girifalco, and diving into the vibrant art scene. With his guidance, we got hands-on, expressing ourselves on white canvases. Together, we painted powerful messages of diversity and unity, turning our anti-hate speech stance into vibrant art.

Cultural nights were special for every national group as everyone wanted to represent their heritage in a creative, educational and interactive way. Finding out about interesting traditions, and dances and trying food is always a great way to spend an evening.

We took a trip to the stunning towns of Pizzo and Tropea, soaking in their beauty. From the charming streets of Pizzo to the breathtaking views in Tropea, each place left us in awe. Exploring these picturesque locations added an extra layer of magic to our project, creating unforgettable memories against the backdrop of these incredible destinations.