Champions Factory Ireland is coordinating the international Erasmus+ Youth Mobility project – “Healthy and Active Youth”. The first project activity – a Youth Exchange, took place in the period 9-18 July 2018 in Varna (Bulgaria), with a hosting organisation – Champions Factory Bulgaria.

“Healthy and Active Youth” brought youngsters with different background and experience form 5 countries (Ireland, Romania, Italy, Bulgaria and Turkey) in a 8-days youth exchange in Varna, Bulgaria, resulting in raising their awareness on the importance of healthy and active lifestyle and in empowering them to become promoters of the topic in their youth societies.

In the context of growing in number sports clubs and gyms, paradoxical statistics show a tendency of increasing the number of inactive youngsters. A survey made by TNS Opinion & Social network made in the 28 Member States of EU shows that youngsters who defined themselves as inactive were 39% in 2015; while in 2016 they have become 42%.  The benefits of doing regular physical activities are in line with improving the overall health condition of people, through reducing the risk for many chronic diseases as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and some cancers, helping control weight, and contributing to mental well-being. Sport can be used as a universal educational tool among youngsters, which can build a bridge between different social groups for better mutual comprehension and dialogue. Sport can serve as a unifying unit for developing the European society.

The partner consortium had undertaken this project led by their mutual desire to give an opportunity for groups of young people from different countries to meet and learn about each other’s cultures. The project was the profound result of a common planning and project designing of colleagues (representatives of the partner organisations), who had previously met in different organisations. Due to their shared wish to create a Youth Exchange around the theme of mutual interest – intercultural exchange through outdoor activities – the “Healthy and Active Youth” project was developed. 

Results of the first Youth Exchange:

– raised awareness of the importance of healthy and active lifestyle among youth

– empowered youngsters in their becoming promoters of healthy and active living in their society

– given an opportunity for youth with fewer opportunities to participate in international activities

– promoted intercultural exchange and created a sustainable youth network

Stay tuned for information on the Second “Healthy and Active Youth” Youth Exchange, which will take place in the period 15-24 August 2018 in Sardinia, Italy.

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