Erasmus+ is a program which is funded by the European Union. Through this program, we got into contact with our five partner schools from Finland, Spain, Hungary, Turkey and Germany. Together, we worked on a year-long project which focuses on different aspects of sustainability.
Due to the pandemic, our previous Erasmus+ exchanges all had to take place online. This is why we were all the more excited that our final project week could take place in Rendsburg, Germany!
Sunday: As some of us had never been to Germany before, we visited Hamburg on our way. We took a short walk along the harbor and then went to Rendsburg by train, where Jens, one of the German teachers, welcomed us with a warm “Moin, moin.” After checking into the hostel, we took a short evening walk along the Nord-Ostsee-Kanal.
Monday: On the next day, we met our partner schools in person for the first time. We immediately made friends and after the ice-breaking activities, we formed eight international groups which we would work in for the rest of the week.
Tuesday: We started the second day with a visit to the cinema. The documentary “Welcome to Sodom” taught us that most of Europe’s electronic waste actually ends up in Ghana. We were shocked to learn that a lot of people there live in poverty and work under horrible conditions to get rid of the waste that we produce. In the afternoon, each international group got assigned a different type of renewable energy (for example wind energy, solar energy, biogas etc.) and prepared a presentation about it.
Wednesday: On Wednesday, we had a short workshop where we used recyclable materials such as plastic bottles to build small, solar fueled boats. In the afternoon, we visited Friedrichstadt and later, some of us even took a short bath in the North Sea.
Thursday: On Thursday, we presented our findings from the second day to the other groups and then tried to find out more about the different schools taking part in the project. Our goal was to find a way to make the schools’ buildings as environmentally friendly and sustainable as possible. In fact, we found out that installing renewable energy sources might seem expensive at first – but in the long run, it certainly pays off! We spent our final evening together with an amazing international dinner.
Friday: When we left on Friday, we felt exhausted but also very sad that we already had to leave. It certainly was an educational but nevertheless fun week. And that’s what Erasmus+ is about: having fun while learning new things and making friends with people from other countries!
from left to right: Samyan Manteghi (6bc), Lea Grammerstätter (6g), Vanessa Nikolic (6bc), Mag. Paul Artner, Bianca Gavrila (6bc), Mag. Esther Benes