Summer camps solidified bridges among youth the region wide


In an attempt to bring representatives of the various youth groups in Georgia, UNAG and CRS launched summer camps this year in Georgia and Turkey. This initiative was implemented under the five year, USAID-funded<a href="">"Youth for Change - Building for the Future”</a>program. This program works through Youth Activist Clubs and aims at empowering youth to engage in building democracy in their local areas as well as nationwide. This project engages youth in Tbilisi and six provinces throughout Georgia in many diverse activities and attempts to build bridges with youth in Georgia's two breakaway provinces of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. 19 clubs and 1 auxiliary club have already been established - incorporating over 800 youths into this initiative - while the opening of an eventual 203 Youth Activist Clubs is anticipated in the future.</p> <p>This summer 400 students were given the opportunity to obtain necessary skills while enjoying their summer break in the beautiful outdoors of Georgia and Turkey. The students were chosen to participate in these summer camps based on their leadership, analytical and self-expression skills.</p> <p>The camp held in the Georgian resort of Likani was focused on art and culture while another camp in Akhaldaba involved the participants in sport activities and, in the true spirit of camping, the participants all lived in tents at this camp. The training package prepared for the camp by 7 resource NGOs together with UNAG and CRS covered topics ranging from Human Rights and Tolerance, Basic Economics, Conflict Management to "Sport for all” Activities and Healthy lifestyle initiatives.</p> <p>The summer camps held in Turkey gathered Abkhazian and Georgian youth together for two weeks – from September 7-17 – and aimed at shaping positive relationships between Abkhazian and Georgian youth and encouraged the sharing of experiences and further perspectives on conflict resolution issues.