It has been a week since I came back from the CDN summer camp. It took me then several days at the seaside to wash off the sustainable layer of the dust that I got during those 10 amazing days of camping. About 70 young people from Eastern and Western Europe gathered together to try to live simple, but rich in communication, understanding and experience life.
CDN is the Cooperation and Development Network Easter Europe founded in December 2002 with the goal of developing and supporting green youth organizations in Eastern and South Eastern Europe through cooperation and exchange of knowledge. CDN holds different activities around the year uniting green youth and promoting ecology, sustainability, human rights, minority rights, gender equality, democracy as well as democratic ways of working.
CDN summer camp has become a tradition to enjoy some warm summer days together, learn and share experiences. However, this year the summer camp got new look : functional model of self-sustainable community that puts into practice the principles of an environmentally friendly life-style. The accommodation was organized in tents and activities and sessions were outside (thanks heavens for the great sunny weather). Everyone was asked to take part in running the camp, solving problems and decision-making concerning the conditions of living and working during the camp. It sounds utopian, but it did work, probably not perfect, but quite good. Everybody was keen on making the camp even better day by day. As for the educational part, there were some rather new great methods such as Living library (the description of the method and how we did it will be soon published in the follow up from the camp at CDN web page) and some great lecturers. For example, Theo (Theoharis Tziovaras), an inspiring lecturer in sustainability from Athens, joined us for the whole camp, held a lot of fascinating workshops and discussions, helped much in running of the camp, and became a good friend. Global Young Greens organized a lecture on more international topic such as Revolution, civil war and the political economy of
the MENA-Region (the Middle East and North Africa) that was held by Thomas Schmidinger from University of Vienna.
All in all, it was a wonderful experience. I really hope that we will keep our optimism and inspiration that we got from this camp. Well, it is a trivial thing to say, but it felt like a big family, and I hope we will have a family reunion soon!