Let’s start with the the ambassadors. What guys you’re going to do in Hamburg?
Evgenia: All ambassadors coming to Hamburg are one way or another involved in the organizing process. As for us with Maria personally, we are responsible for the meeting with the participants and YT Ambassadors which is going to be in the second evening of the School. We plan to play a thrilling psychological game which is very popular in our country but unfortunately isn’t that well-known abroad. It always reveals a lot of unexpected features in every player so for the participants it’s a good chance to learn something new about themselves and get to know each other as well.
What other informal activities or sub-activities are in plan?
Taulant: Well, you already know about the City Quest – we are expecting to have a lot of fun there! Also, there will be a peer-to-peer session on the third day of the School. “Get Real” is going to be great exploration adventure in the form of the game, let’s say. The participants will be given the opportunity to explore their own values and what is important to them. It is an activity that helps each individual to filter their life goals, and life priorities. How? I won’t go deep into that right now, but I can point out that ‘filtering process’ will start with 5 different colored cards and instructions regarding what to write on each.
Maria: And this is not the full list. Judging by our experience, the most remarkable purely informal activities are usually initiated by the participants and are taking place out of the “planned” schedule!
Evgenia: They are: night swimming, taking pics in straw hats under the moonlight (coz no time to go out during the day!), secret “girls only” parties with eating sweets after the sundown, hanging out in some dancing clubs after the official program, playing our favorite “Zombie hugs” game – any activity with a hashtag #YTSecretSummer (laughing)
How should our newcomers prepare before attending #YTSummer?
Maria: They should be prepared for having an experience which may change their lives! One of the YT events made me quit my annoying office job and go for my dream to become a singer. Now I am coming to Hamburg having organized own music festival in Saint-Petersburg. As for Evgenia – before her first Summer school she used to lead a boring existence, spoke very poor English and couldn’t even imagine that in 3 years she would be engaged in development of international youth diplomacy and easily interview famous people in English language.
Evgenia: So our main advice is – be open, smile and never have doubts about your potential!
How can participants show their creativity outside the Summer School’s activities?
Yulia Mazykina: We will have a photo contest, but not a classic one. There won’t be any evaluation of participants’ professionalism, although it is also important. Emotions and meanings, conveyed in a photo, are of the utmost significance today. We would like the participants to share their emotions with young people from around the world by posting their works in social networks. In fact, we will entrust the matter of evaluation of those photographic works to other users of social networks, and we will just give away our prize to the winner who will be determined by the amount of “likes”. In addition, we’d like to keep our right as organizers to choose one winner from contestants and reward him/her with a special prize from the Youth Time team. There is only one condition for those who want to receive a memorable prize from us – they should post the official hashtags of the event #YTSummer and #YTContest along with their photo. Certainly, it will be something equally progressive, meaningful and funny, because the Summer School is not just about studying; it also involves a valuable interaction with new and interesting people. Anyway, I have no intention of setting certain frameworks for the creators. Just go for it!
Let’s also talk briefly about social networks. What is the best way to stay updated?
Yuliya Gottstein: Well, we plan to involve social networks into our work as much as possible. First of all, participants and those who wouldn’t be able to attend the event, but have an interest in YT activities can follow up our FB, Twitter and Instagram page for daily updates. The hashtag is #YTSummer. There will be photos, posts with the core points from the workshops and we are doing our best now to be able to come up with short videos daily. We will also have a kind of live blog on our website www.youth-time.eu, so there you would be able to find all core stuff. However, we would like to encourage our participants to be active on social networks and actively use the official hashtag, too. Besides activities, the Summer School is a great deal of interaction and fun. Together we will create more unforgettable memories!
By the way, same as in the photo contest, there will be special prizes for the most active users of #YTSummer hashtag. And we’re going to choose the winners not just for posts during Summer School, but also before. So you can already start sharing your emotions and expectations. We’re very excited to read your posts and get to know you better before the event start!