Brainstorming brunch: Fueling change one brunch at a time

Our first brainstorming brunch went productive and delicious in Blagoevgrad! With members of our community in the town, we discussed what the needs and problems of young people are, gathered feedback and experiences from young people in our circles from different places, and began to think about how we could do research locally, regionally, and even on a national level. For the delicious part of our brunch, we trusted Hangout Blagoevgrad, and the place enchanted us with delicious things to eat and original drinks such as lavender latte. After the first brainstorming brunch, it is clear that one becomes much more productive on a full stomach and in a nice environment, so we are also looking for other local businesses to support in its next editions.

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ACT Training Course – Adaptability and Creativity through Theater

Here we are, sharing a recap of an incredible week in Bansko, Bulgaria, where we had the privilege of hosting ACT - Adaptability and Creativity through Theater training course! 🎭 ACT was a 7-day training course for youth workers to use theater as a tool to cultivate adapting-to-change skills. Life is a constant adaptation. From changing jobs to starting university or ending a relationship, we are constantly having to say goodbye to things as they were and welcome the new and unexpected. In the training, we focused on cultivating the skills we need to navigate these moments of transition; and on gaining awareness of our own relationship with change and uncertainty, and on creating a playful and supportive environment to practice embracing the unknown. Participants explored how…

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Be the Change – Social Entrepreneurship Education for Youth | Project Results

The "Be the Change" project, a KA2 small-scale partnership initiative co-funded by the European Union and executed by Zarika Association, Zavod Aspira, and ICAD Foundation, has successfully concluded with remarkable outcomes. The project aimed to promote and support social entrepreneurship in small towns and rural areas in Bulgaria, Slovenia, and Poland, fostering a positive impact on local communities. This article highlights the key results achieved through the collaborative efforts of the partner organizations. Mapping of Social Businesses One of the primary objectives of the Be the Change project was to conduct a comprehensive mapping of social businesses in Bulgaria, Slovenia, and Poland. The mapping exercise aimed to identify and understand the landscape of social enterprises, providing valuable insights into their activities, impact areas, and the challenges they…

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Train the Boogie Trainers – Weekend Training

Dance is the hidden language of the soul of the body. Martha Graham Train the Boogie Trainers was a weekend full of dancing, cooperation, lessons learned and inspiration. Time to share some of the highlights! Looking back, it is hard to believe the whole event was just one weekend. In those three days that we spent together in Bansko, Bulgaria we did 5 workshops, 2 training sessions, an improvised party and even had time to make some cool videos dancing at the end in the beautiful nature. The idea and the plan for the training Let's start from the beginning. The idea behind the Train the Boogie Trainers event was to put together experienced dance teachers, who have worked with different groups of people and see what…

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Be the Change Youth Exchange in Kavarna, Bulgaria

We're very excited to share that the mobility for young people as part of Be the Change project is now a fact and here we share some moments from this experience. ? ? Be the Change youth exchange in Kavarna! We're thrilled to share the success of the "Be the Change" youth exchange program, hosted by Zarika Association, which took place from October 12th to 18th, 2023, in Kavarna, Bulgaria. This transformative event brought together 20 passionate young minds from Bulgaria, Slovenia, and Poland. ? What's Be the Change all about? The "Be the Change" mobility program in Kavarna was tailored for young individuals aged 15 to 18, offering an immersive experience in the world of social entrepreneurship. Our goal was simple: empower these young talents to…

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Unleashing Creativity and Poetry: Open Heart Workshop at Bacho Kiro Middle School in Pavlikeni

At Bacho Kiro Middle School in Pavlikeni, something magical recently took place. The classroom was filled with enthusiasm, artistic expressions, and the joy of learning. The Open Heart Workshop, organized by Zarika Association in partnership with Bulgarche Association, brought together 2nd, 3rd, and 4th-grade students, teachers, and a renowned poet, Lili Spasova, to explore the realms of creativity and poetry. This workshop we implemented in a hybrid on-site and online forms, funded by the European Youth Foundation as part of Youth Express Network's work plan, aimed to inspire young minds and empower them to express themselves through various art forms. Unleashing creativity The workshop embraced creativity in all its forms. Students dived into the world of poetry, uncovering hidden emotions and thoughts within themselves. With pens in…

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Be the Change: Promoting Social Entrepreneurship in Rural Areas and Small Towns through Youth Education

Be the Change project, an Erasmus+ KA210 small-scale partnership project, is one of our long-term projects we just started. It aims to promote social entrepreneurship in rural areas and small towns. This project involves three partners, namely Zarika Association from Bulgaria, Aspira Institute from Slovenia, and ICAD Foundation from Poland, and will run for a year. The project kick-off meeting took place in Trbovlje, Slovenia. The project's key objective is to educate young people about social entrepreneurship and equip them with the necessary skills to initiate and manage social businesses. To achieve this, the partners will undertake various activities, including mapping social businesses in rural areas and small towns in the three countries, developing a methodology and content for an online educational source, hosting a mobility program for…

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