About SocialErasmus Coordinators Meeting in few minutes together with SocialErasmus Lithuania coordinator OnutėBumbulytė!

What? 

SECM –  SocialErasmus Coordinators Meeting. This time National and Local SocialErasmus coordinators decided to meet in Prague, Czech Republic.

When?
Me as a National SocialErasmus Coordinator and Agnė Babelytė as a Local Coordinator departed from Lithuania on 24th of October. SECM started on 25th of October. This meeting lasted for 4 days, till 28th of October. So, we had the most interesting all four days to discuss about SocialErasmus, share our experiences, solve the biggest problems. 
 
What SECM is for?
SECM  is for all Local and National SocialErasmus coordinators. All SE coordinators from  entire Europe and every single section of ESN are invited. This is a great opportunity to understand the concept of SocialErasmus better, think about responsibilities of SE coordinators for once more. During this meeting you can share your experiences, cover both - positive and negative - sides of it. Also it’s a great meeting for problems solving, searching for solutions together. Sharing ideas is a proper way to be more social, to organise more activities, implement something new in your country, just to be inspired by other coordinators and then realise something you have only been dreaming about. 

What was decided?
During SECM we were speaking about many things. We were trying to figure out, what should the national team look like in the future, what should we do to motivate coordinators and students to contribute in our social activities. We decided that all, National and Local SocialErasmus coordinators, have to register social activities in SE website. If we will cooperate on that, it will be easier for Europe to see what each country is doing and that all together we are doing a lot. This is the best way to share material and let the Europe to know about us. 
 
What is the most important thing you have learned about SocialErasmus there?
SocialErasmus in not only going to schools as you might think. It’s much more. It’s help for old people to go out from the room, speak with them or even clean forest together. After this meeting SocialErasmus is something more for me. It is all activities which can be useful for society, all things which changes things in a good way. SocialErasmus – being social, feeling better.

What new have you learned?
After this meeting I came back home full of ideas, what I should be changed to make SocialErasmus in Lithuania even better. If you want to change something – just do it, don’t sit in one place and just speak about it.

Did you enjoy being there? 
Yes, a lot. It was great opportunity to meet new people, hear, what others are doing, understand, what should I actually do. For this opportunity to go there I’m saying thanks for my university, International Relations department at Šiauliai university.
 
Anything more to share?
Reach higher! Go further! Go social!
 
Thank you, Onute, very much for the ideas shared and wish you to have a fruitful cadency!

If National Platform one day would decide to limit National Board to one person it would be this position remaining. Position taken by the same lady two years in a row. She has seen, done and experience a lot during these years – from the presentation of her candidacy online to becoming the president of ESN Lithuania, reviving ties with Education Exchanges Support Foundation, organizing Mentors’ Days 2012 and establishing ESN in Lithuania as an official organization. What does it take for Gintarė Vaiginytė to keep organization moving and what does it mean to be responsible for the great part of that? Let’s hear Gintarė answering to all of these questions.

Hello, Ms. President! How does it feel to know that it is your last month as a head of ESN Lithuania at least for now? 
 
I have never thought about that before. Hmmm. I am happy, I got a lot and I gave a lot to ESN in Lithuania. I am sad at the same time too, it`s hard to leave the “family” and it`s doesn’t matter how many hard, complicated moments I had. I feel like a student during the last night before an exam. I know that I did as much as I could, but at the same time I had a feeling that something is still not perfect enough. Maybe my mark will be the best at the end. 
 
Are you planning to stay in ESN for longer? What do you think about our ESN LT Alumni network and former members joining it? Are you planning to become one of them?
 
At this moment I don’t have any plans with ESN, but I don’t what God plans for me. As my friend from Czech Republic repeated me all the time: never say never.
Well, my opinion about ESN LT Alumni… The idea is sweet and I wish all the best for this project. As I said, at this moment I don’t have any plans with ESN, but I don`t know about tomorrow.
 
What thing within two recent years as ESN Lithuania’s president you are mostly proud of?
 
I am proud of my colleagues. Without all of them, anything would never have happened. I am proud of how big and strong ESN Lithuania grew up in general. I am proud of ESN LT being a lead by many aspects for the other ESN countries or sections. 
 
How does it feel to take your position? What features should have perfect president?
 
For the first second it feels just awesome, for the next second OMG! What have I done? And for all the rest of years – come to this position and you will see how many feelings at the same time it gives.
The perfect president: The leader by nature. Complete extrovert. The realist and of course a friendly person.
 
Has the time in the National Board helped you to improve personally? How much?
 
Absolutely YES. It did a lot.

How would you describe typical ESNer?
 
Look at yourself, are you typical ESNer? It`s impossible to describe, for ex. I could ask you to describe typical human being, could you? Of course no, human could be a girl or a boy, with long hair or bold and so on… It`s impossible to do it, everyone is the one and the only. Being a Volunteer – only one unifying feature of all of them, this is a typical ESNer for me.
 
How you would improve that image? What ESN Lithuania you would love to see in the future?
 
You should ask the new ESN LT President. All answers coming in the future. 
 
What are things you would love to do if you would start ESN career from the very beginning? Is there something what every ESNer should seek to try? 
 
I did or even I tried to do everything what I have planned in the beginning. Every ESNer should go for Erasmus studies and internship.

Maybe some more thoughts left?
 
Thank you very much to my board: Sandrai, Kristinai, Sandrutei, Simui, Simonai, Vydūnui, Laurynui, sections, Augustei, Orintai, Vytenui ir Justinui, Ievai, Giedrei and VGTU URD. 

Thank you very much!
 
You have just read an interview with our present ESN Lithuania President Gintarė Vaiginytė. We hope, you have enjoyed it!

It is hard to leave ESN after everything you went through together. Even you are already graduated, having a full-time job and organizing your free time more carefully than ever before. Probably there is no other ESN Lithuania’s member who could prove it more than Julius Zaburas – the one who did not only create a shelter for graduated ESNers in Lithuania, but also less than a week before was elected as the Head Coordinator of ESN LT Alumni Network for the second time in a row. Let’s talk, why ESN and why for so long.

Hello, Julius! How the summer is going? Does even this period have something in common with ESN?

Hello, Sandra. Firstly I would like to thank you for being interested in our activity, it means a lot for us. And now about ESN - this summer is very important for the club, because we still have to do many "black work" like creating strategies, visions, mission, some promo... Plus everything must be coordinated along with international Alumni. But now when we have new board we are able to work 100% and I believe that during the next national platform you will see many good changes in ESN LT Alumni.

Which experience or memory from ESN experience you cherish the most? For how long you are in the organization already?

I am in the organisation for almost 2 years and from the very beginning I was working with the social projects. This is why as the best memory is having two Spanish students gathering charity for children with cancer while it was snowing outside and the temperature was below zero. :-) Showing to the people that ERASMUS is not only partying is the biggest reward for me.

What makes you stay? Were these years while being a member of ESN VGTU not enough?

ESN changed my life because I fulfilled many dreams there, using ESN I improved as a person. Now it is time to give something back - my main goal is using my personal experience (together with other Alumni) show how cool ESN is. It is not the secret that we have some problems with the motivation of some sections and hope that our help, support can fix this. Plus in Lithuania volunteering among the young people is not so popular but doing it is awesome, right? Why not to come together and prove it!

How did you get attracted to join the organization?

Hmm, the first idea was to party with ERASMUS students :-) But after few weeks I felt that I can successfully represent my country, that I can CREATE projects which can make other people happy. So this is why I still try to do all of this, even the stupidest ideas in ESN can become true. 

How do you try to attract former members of ESN LT to join Alumni network now?

If to say the true I do not try to attract former members of ESN LT at the moment. Now I just want to find out how many former ESN members are really motivated to work because they naturally need for it. Nobody are forced or pushed to be the member of the Alumni. They must have it in their heart. But as I said before during the summer we are working hard and planning to make it much more attractive by presenting ourselves during the next national platform..

Does the tactic work? How big you are today?

I think yes. Today we have 4 - 5 desired ESN LT Alumni members, totally we have 9 official members. 

What future would you like to see for Alumnies in ESN Lithuania?

Now one of the main goals is to get involved in international arena. This year we must present the national coordinator for ESN Alumni International. Talking about the Lithuania, the club is planning to start working on job vacations for former ESN members which will cover many EU countries. We have many ideas which will be revealed during next NP. :-)

What is the message for all ESNers, who just graduated or planning to do in coming years?

Do not hurry up to become an adult. Think of your dream and follow it. And remember - if you were volunteering in ESN, you are special already - use it! If you still want to feel ESN spirit, we are waiting for you. If not - just remember your friends and colleagues and help them when they need it.

Thank you very much!

3 month ago 12 exchange students with a help of ESN Lithuania in cooperation with “Invest Lithuania”  and ESN VGTU started their new adventure in a totally different role – they decide to become their native language teachers. Except one brave Lithuanian student who decided to teach not his native language, but Russian.

The others were teaching German, Chinese, French, Croatian, Spanish and Turkish languages.  It was a big challenge for them, because almost nobody had experience in teaching, but still it didn‘t scared them!

At the begining of this project some languages (Spanish, Russian, Chinese, German) gained a huge interest and it was even impossible to teach everyone, that‘s why registration were made and just 25 lucky students had opportunity to learn these languages. The other languages were less popular, but for their students it was a big advantage, because each of them got more attention and even became friends with their teachers.

Here teachers of Turkish, Russian, French, Spanish and Chinese languages shared their opinions about this project:

Why you decided to take a part in this project and become a teacher?

Romain (French): Because I wanted to share my knowledge and my culture and have a new experience (teaching).

Andrius (Russian): I think answer is in the question: “to become a teacher”. Isn’t this a wish of every student? To be that person who finally gives homework and not does it. Of course, it is not the most important point. I decided to participate in this project to prove myself that I can do this; that I can be that person who can help others to improve their language skills or learn something new.

Eva (Chinese): I wanted to get more experience and share my language, and the most important is meet the new friends.

Serkan and Celilsemi (Turkish): There was a big opportunity to introduce our language and culture to foreigners. Also, this kind of project makes us more sociable. That's why we decided to take a part in this project.

Alejandro (Spanish): I decided to join this programm for improving my English, learning from my students and not to be scared of talking in public in the future.

How was it to be in the teacher's role? Did you like it?

Romain (French): It was a very great experience, I loved it !

Andrius (Russian): This is a question for my students. I hope, I wasn‘t a horrible teacher. However, I liked teaching. It is a wonderful feeling to help others and even better feeling is seeing how my students are improving themselves.

Eva (Chinese): Being a teacher is really good, because you can share your knowledge and get more experience. I like this project and like to be a teacher.

Serkan and Celilsemi (Turkish): We liked it. We enjoyed it so much with our dear students.

Alejandro (Spanish): I liked to be a teacher, of course :)

What kind of experience did you gain in this project?

Romain (French): I gained oral presentation practice, preparation of  presentation (PPT).

Andrius (Russian): Firstly, with every next lesson I became more self-confident. I lost my fear which was over me in the first lesson when I had to stand up in front of almost 30 students who were sitting and looking at me with their wide eyes. Secondly, this project made me more organized because I had to prepare all material for students. And of course, I made a lot of new friends. It was strange, but sweet when someone saw me and said to me: „Hey, I am your student. What are we going to learn next week?“ :)

Serkan and Celilsemi (Turkish): We got some experience from this project such as teaching, searching information, leadership, leading and managing our studentassss:), teamwork etc.

What is your opinion about this project? Do you think it's useful?

Romain (French): Very nice project, useful for "teacher" and "students".

Andrius (Russian): I think that project “Multilingual Lithuania” is a successful idea. There are a lot of students who really want to learn foreign languages and this project is the best solution, because you are being thought by students from countries which language you want to learn. I admire all teachers and students who participated in this project and gave their time for teaching and learning. Great job! You made this project awesome!

Serkan and Celilsemi (Turkish): It is definately useful for improving language and teaching skills. It is making easier to understand other cultures.

Alejandro (Spanish): I think this programm is a really good idea.

Tell about your teaching methods

Romain (French): We prepared presentation at home firstly, then we presented it to students. All presentations are divide in 2 part: a lecture part and cultural part. We also made a quiz about what we just learned and sometimes about what we have learned previously.

Andrius (Russian): I’ve tried to make an informal atmosphere as much as I could by talking with my students and letting them to speak (in Russian, of course). I wrote on blackboard that students could improve their writing and reading skills. Sometimes I asked them to come to blackboard to write. Moreover, after all lessons we all together reviewed past lessons. I was just walking around students asking them some random words or sentences and they were answering in Russian.

Serkan and Celilsemi (Turkish): We used almost everything we can use, PowerPoint presentations, blackboard, music, pictures, example sheets from some other resources.

Alejandro (Spanish): I used a PDF for self learning, and I tried to get as more feedback as possible. I think it‘s better to listen and speak a language instead of learning only grammar.
The most memorable lesson?

Romain (French): The most memorable lesson was maybe the lesson about French cuisine (talking about eating snails and frog legs).

Andrius (Russian): I will never forget my first lesson when I introduced myself in Russian and I saw how confused my students were. Unforgettable…

Alejandro (Spanish): The best lecture: that day just two students came. I was teaching some grammar and later a lot of funny expressions, we were laughing a lot during that lecture.

Your wishes or suggestions to future teachers.

Romain (French): Don't be scared everybody can do it. Enjoy this moment!

Andrius (Russian): Have patience and believe in yourself.

Serkan and Celilsemi (Turkish): Before starting lectures, they should advertise their lessons to get more students then don‘t forget to keep students till the end of the semester. If they find a book to give papers for students, it will be more useful and easier for them and their students. We wish they will enjoy time with their students.

Alejandro (Spanish): Be patient.

All in all, “Multilingual Lithuania“ project was beneficial for both - students and teachers - teachers have gained a new experience and students got an opportunity to learn new languages totally for free!

We approve this project and really hope that it will last for a long time!

Thank you Kathleen, Eva, Romain, Hugues, Kenny, Brian, Marina, Iva, Andrius, Alejandro, Serkan, Celilsemi and Ozan – you are the best!

On Friday afternoon, everyone is eager to forget all the hard work of the week and to experience the joy of spring. Some of us prefer going out of town, the others are searching for peace in the blossoming parks. However, on the 17th of May all of the 25 benches in 
 
P. Cvirka square had notions saying “WARNING. FRESHLY PAINTED.” next to them. At the beginning, many passers-by were unsatisfied for they had to change their plans and search for another park to sit. After a moment, they saw a group of students, who were painting the benches with smiles and enthusiasm in their faces. Curiosity was unbearable and so people sat on stairs and lawn to observe the process, catching the positive vibes of students and gradually, starting to smile themselves. The bravest and most curious came closer and started asking for more information about the initiative they were witnessing.

Finally, it turned out that the benches were painted by volunteers from Erasmus Student Network Lithuania (ESN Lithuania): there were Lithuanians from Vilnius University, Vilnius Gediminas Technical University with the exchange program Erasmus students from USA, Croatia, Spain and Czech Republic as well as students of International School of Law and Business from India and Belarus. Many were surprised by the fact that students had no sponsors: all the money for benches renovation was gathered by previously mentioned high schools and University of Applied Social Sciences. The members of ESN in these institutions united to attain one goal: to motivate both Lithuanian and Erasmus students to collect white coins and prove that even students, who are just in the process of building their future careers, can be socially responsible. The members of ESN were happy with their job and emphasized, that it may only seem that it was very difficult to gather money for the renovation of 25 benches: a single white coin seems to be meaningless, but when people pool their coins, they unite and are able to make significant changes. The administration of “Vilnius Parks” were also pleased with students’ job and allowed ESN members to pain the logo of the organization on the renovated benches.

After painting all of the benches, students involved in the initiative were joking that 
P. Cvirka square will become their favourite park and an ‘own’ place in Vilnius.
 
National SocialErasmus coordinator says huge thanks to exchange students - Chris Stowell (USA), Marina Garić (Croatia), Jeník Janata (Czech Republic), Alejandro Aguilar (Spain), Himanshu Singh Rana (India), Barys Kliuchnikau (Belarus); also for Lithuanians - Kornelija Ramanauskaitė, Renata Citrinavičiūtė, Monika Draučiūnaitė, Justina Prunskaitė, Agnė Babelytė, Dainius Vasiliauskas

SocialErasmus project “Erasmus fairy-tale” for the first time was realized in December 2010. ESN VGTU (Vilnius Gediminas Technical University) wanted to do something special, something they had never done before, so their vicepresident Gintarė Vaiginytė and VGTU International Relations manager Jelena Mazaj came up with an idea of a new social project: they have suggested to prepare a fairy-tale before Christmas: to teach Erasmus students a fairy-tale in Lithuanian and perform it in the kindergarten, and… this project is continuing until these days!

While volunteers are still preparing for new performance, called “Pagrandukas” (English -  “Round bun”), we are curious to know more details how ESN VGTU is implementing this project. Today we speak with Sigita Pociūtė - current ESN VGTU SocialErasmus project coordinator and Justina Prunskaitė, who is responsible for „Erasmus Tale“ implementation this semester. 
 
How you choose tales and actors?

 
We are thinking about it all together during our Social Committee meetings. Members of committee wrote down all the nice fairytales they know, but still it is difficult to choose the best one, but somehow we make decision. For example this semester we have chosen already mentioned “Round bun”, because one of committee members saw this tale, performed by her relative and she noticed that children were impressed.
 
Concerning actors, we invite volunteers by announcing the first audition on our facebook page.  Those who come and, after seeing what kind of activity it is, still stay, these people are our actors. Then, we divide roles by discussing among each other… always in friendly way.
 
How much time you need to prepare the performance?
 
Practice makes it perfect, so almost whole semester. Making decorations for the performance also takes some time, as most of them we do by ourselves, some of them we get with a little help of our friends. 
To create decoration we organize workshops. For example, last semester we were preparing for the fairytale ,,The sky is falling“ : Spanish guys made a house from cardboard; Other actors created domino masks decorating them with the features of different animals. After the performance in the kindergarten we gave the masks to children, because we thought it was the last performance. But then we decided to make more children smile, so we arranged one more performance and we had to create new masks. 

Where you usually show these performances? 
 
In kindergarten and children hospital. But this year we also want to have one performance at Bernardinai Children centre (social center). Mentioned institutions are always waiting for us, welcomes us warmly - they have already seen previous performances and know how amazing this project is.
 
And what is the feedback from Erasmus exchange students? Do they enjoy participating in this project?
 
The feedback is always positive. Our actors are very artistic and creative, also the enjoy learning fairy-tale in Lithuanian:  some words for them look funny, and some learnt words they can even use outside rehearsals, so - it is useful and fun. 
 
What is the main challenge implementing this project?
 
The most difficult part is gathering actors to rehearsals. Everybody is very busy, it is hard for students to find some time for rehearsals and not to be late. 

These are the main ideas ESN VGTU social committee wanted to share with you about the project  ”Erasmus fairy-tale”. And while waiting photos and video of “Round bun”, which will be perfomed in May, have a look on previous tales:

2012 video

2011 video

 

Usually it takes a long time to get there. Once you do that, there is never enough: of ESN, of people you meet and spirit you feel. Official description tells you that it is the main decision-making body of ESN International. Well, it is. And it is much more at the same time: future cooperations, knowledge transfer, gathering information, sharing experiences, developing ideas, creating personal long-lasting relations, simply having fun and believing in ideas of the network. 

The idea of AGM is to gather together around 600 current and former members of ESN from international, national and local levels. 36 countries – numbers only prove how broad our organization is. And while wearing different colors and realizing slightly different projects we manage to keep unity in diversity. 

ESN Lithuania also was a part of it – 12 delegates representing 9 sections of ESN Lithuania together with NB delegates and NR in front of. Great purple cloud took over the city of Maribor for 4 days starting from 11th continuing to 14th of April. 

Thursday, 11th of April

While our NR Simona Patašiūtė was catching a breath after intensive and productive pre-CNR delegation of Lithuania was slowly starting to appear from different corners of Europe. The fastest ones were invited to explore Maribor – former European Capital of Culture 2012 during guided sightseeing tours, which invited to share “Brez objemov” or “Free Hugs” with the citizens. Surprised, smiling faces and a bit scared ones from too high dose of Love, but after all – socially aware ESN greeting for the city, which hosted the biggest event of the network. 

Opening ceremony of the event was soon to come so after making few more circles in the city time for preparations to meet Mr. President of Slovenia Borut Pahor. After his speech even more greetings followed by ESN AISLB president Emanuel Alfranseder, partnerts of the network and even Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth. Ceremony was opened and closed by Slovenian singer performing anthem of ESN SB – “Don’t You Worry Child”.

Afterwards delegations were invited to enjoy traditional Slovenian dinner together with songs and dances followed by Responsible Party where RP ambassadors were taking a great care of ESNers while providing them water and other goods.

Friday, 12th of April

From 7am in the morning participants were invited to enjoy the breakfast and so prepare for the following sessions when procedures of AGM were presented, chairs were elected, agenda approved and presentations of the candidates for 2013-2014 IB were heard. 

Later the action was moved to the Technical Faculties, where local Slovenian people together with the members of ESN were invited to participate in the Uni-market which has lasted for 3 hours and has invited to get to know more than 300 universities across entire Europe. 

After the market was finished ESNers were invited to attend the variety of workshops starting with the diplomacy lessons taught by Slovenian Foreign Affairs Minister ending up with project management and team building. Impressions and lessons which were learnt were shared during the National Platforms, which invited to talk about candidates for the IB, about AGM itself and to prepare for the loud and colorful flag-parade. 

Parade which took for more than few hours and was captured by various media representatives ended up in Festival Hall Lent where the Eurodinner took place. Crazy night with loud music, various goods from different countries of the world leaded to the one of the most important days of AGM.

 

Saturday, 13th of April

The 3rd day of AGM invited to the sessions where the most important decisions were made. OCs for the future international events were elected:

• AGM Milano 2014;
• CEP Košice 2014;
• CND Lodz 2014.

Later on budgets were discussed and presentation about the work done by IB 2012-2013 was given. As well as standing orders were changed with the biggest innovation – bringing the chairing team to the CNR meetings, which from now one will be made of CNR Administrator, Secretary and Technical Assistant. 

44Changes for the Visual Identity Manual were also introduced with a suggestion to allow the use of ESN logo in full solid ESN Colors, including ESN Pink/Cyan/Orange/Green/Dark Blue. The next day proposal was approved by AGM, so from now on we have even more colorful and flexible visual identity of the network! 

AGM was continued by presentation of the Board Action Plan for 2013 – 2014 with concrete actions how to improve the structure, budget, work of secretariat and strengthen up ESN Brand. Promotion of the mobility, concentration on the projects as ESNSurvey, PRIME, Erasmus Impact Study will remain. Will be working on strengthening up the Eduk8, Alumni network, working with facilitation of international jobs, traineeships and volunteer opportunities for ESN members.

During the rest of the day international ESN projects were presented: ESNWiki, Responsible Party, where ESN Lithuania takes the first place by the number of RP parties organized! Time for the session was coming to an end so lots of discussion points were delayed to the coming day. 

UV Youngle Party followed afterwards, where with the help with OC, IB and NewYorker everyone was dressed the same – T-shirts of ESN, which later on were covered by the layers of ultraviolet sensitive paints. 

Sunday, 14th of April

New day, new challenges and huge amounts of information! Projects as ESN Satellite was presented with having a first look to the new version of it and promise for it soon to come. ESN Survey was analyzed, recent results of Eduk8 were presented continuing with the presentation with the rest of projects as Erasmus in Schools as a Flagship Project for this year, Social Erasmus as the latter Flagship Project of ESN, Section Quality Development, Section Cooperation, ESN Galaxy, ESN Card, Ride for Your Rights, ExchangeAbility presentations. 

Reports of CNR, CND, Committees, Liaison Office and Network itself followed together with presentation of commercial, institutional partners.

Alumni were also invited to the stage to present their new work done during the recent year, attempts to gather all national Alumni coordinators to one place and to share their knowledge and possibilities between each other. More information about Alumni network might be found HERE. Also traditional Alumni grant was given. This time it was ESN Rijeka which was awarded by 500eu for the innovative trainings for ESN members of their section. 

Also that day IB for the next cadency was elected:

• President – Stefan Jahnke;

• Vice-president – Dominique Montagnese;

• Treasurer – Jonathan Jelves;

• Communication Manager – Robert Klimacki;

• Web Project Administrator – Salih Odabasi.

After the reports of the auditors and vote of AGM event was officially closed. Only Gala-prom was waiting for the participants.

Gala this year was different. The idea was to have a prom date like in the times of finishing high school. That was the reason why everyone that night came by two. High heels and ties, dresses and suits – that night we’ve proved  how different we can be – from dirty t-shirts to fancy look, from crazy parties to Social Erasmus. That’s what ESN is about.

15th of April

Then the sun started to appear in the morning of 15th AGM came to an end. Lots of goodbyes were told during the breakfast, many free hugs made to each other hoping to see each other again. Once more hundreds of people from different parts of Europe spread apart to work for the same ideas and values only through different projects and venues. Work for the local, national and international community. Spread responsible and socially aware ideas.

Every time we meet, something changes. In statutes, standing orders, VMI, but the wish to ESN your life always remains.

Pallomeri, dear members of ESN!

More photos HERE!

This spring semester ESN VGTU is participating in national ESN Lithuania social project called Erasmus Postcards. It is a project with the same idea as Erasmus in Schools (EiS). EiS sends international students into local schools to talk about their country, language and culture. EiS thus promotes European Citizenship and makes pupils familiar with the idea of mobility and the possibilities to realise it (such as the Erasmus programme). Before the semester began ESN VGTU mentors asked their international students to bring a couple of post cards with a representative view of their countries. On 5th - 7th of February VGTU International Relations Office organized annual VGTU event – International Days. ESN VGTU was excited to be a part of this important, useful and interesting event. Every day of the festival during lunch break ESN VGTU could be found at the foyer near the 03rd auditorium. ESN VGTU were offering a lot of different activities such as marking the place where you have been or where you want to go in the map, participating in the photo contest and the quiz about culture, language and Erasmus programme, getting your name written in Korean language and many other things. On the 1st day of event ESN VGTU invited international students to fill the post cards that they had brought. It was an amazing moment when lots of foreign students gathered together with their mentors and wrote something in Lithuanian, something in their language as well as first impression on Lithuania in English. An exhibition of these post cards was held until 7th of February so every student of VGTU both – Lithuanian and international – could see and enjoy the post cards from different corners of the world. Considering the fact that some students for different reasons come to Lithuania later that the beginning of semester, everyone got a chance to bring their post cards to ESN room until the end of February.

Moreover, students who forgot to bring post cards had enough time to ask their relatives to send some by mail. Finally, in March we sent all the post cards to Pabradės Ryto gimasium, as it is one of the schools that VGTU is collaborating with. It was not only post cards that we sent. The coordinator of this social project Aistė Ulevičiūtė together with ESN VGTU social dream team prepared a package which included VGTU Erasmus letters and poster with main information about students mobility and international opportunities. 18th – 22nd of March was announced as No Bullying Week. 35 non-govermental organizations and 1130 educational institutions were participating in this social project and organized a huge variety of remarkable events and activities. Pabradės Ryto gymnasium included Erasmus Post Cards project into their No Bullying Week activities as the project makes students think about racism, cultural discrimination and tolerance. Therefore ESN VGTU got a chance to be a part of this exclusive tremendous social project.

The photos of “Erasmus postcards” – first step – might be found HERE.

As every year, on the 2nd and 3rd of March, Vilnius was shaken by Saint Casimir's Fair. Second year in a row students from ERASMUS Student Network (ESN Lithuania) did not stand aside and together with non - profit organization "Mamų Unija" (“Mothers’ Union”) took part in this amazing event by collecting charity from strangers. Volunteers came from ESN VGTU and ESN Vilnius University guided by the slogan "Children with cancer also play".  Cold did not scare neither members of the National Board nor members of ESN LT Alumni club. The main aim of the project was to gather as much charity as possible while selling special postcards provided by "Mother’s Union".  All donations were given to Santariškių Hospital in Vilnius.

The first day had just started and meant to be very interesting - while going to the city centre it was snowing A LOT, snowstorm was performing its best. After arriving to the destination another challenge was to build a tent - no one of us had ever done such thing, so nobody had enough experience to do it right and after half an hour of trying we came to conclusion that one part was missing. However, it was not true and with the help of other fair's participants we finally did it! Just after preparing everything for the trade the first ERASMUS students showed who started communicating with people and raising the money very willingly. They were grouped by two people - one Lithuanian and one foreigner. All pairs had special "money boxes" and some postcards for presenting. Probably the biggest part of the attention was showed to Julius who screamed loudly using a megaphone two days in a row. But the most important thing was the sun - it warmed the air and also the atmosphere.
 
This Saint Casimir's Fair was extraordinary, because for the first time the parade was organized -the  members of NGOs “Mamų Unija”  ("Mothers’ Union") and ESN Lithuania marched through the city centre and encouraged  people to pay more attention to the problem of cancer, as many of them just pretend not to understand it and try to avoid even listening to it. 
 
One of the organizers Julius Zaburas (ESN LT Alumni) was very proud, because this year not only students from ESN VGTU participated) in the event (ESN VU joined them): "I am very happy that this charity event is becoming a tradition and is also expanding. I hope that in the future it will be possible to improve even more with Saint Casimir's fair and support children who were really disadvantaged by destiny".
 
During the event 2 836 Lt ( ~820 euros ) was fundraised. They were all donated to the "Santariškių" hospital in Vilnius.

ESN Lithuania invites to join goodness campaign „Nebūk daiktistas“ (“Don’t be a Thingist”) organized by our friends pagalbadaiktais.lt!
 
Project encourages you to give away things you do not need any more in change of gratitude of people, who need these things more.
 
All and each of you who read this are more than welcome to join campaign of sharing and helping each other!
 
Check your cupboard and think - maybe there are things you don‘t need or don‘t like anymore?
 
It could be:
– clothes – shoes – utensils – stationery – books – toys/board games – many other things.
 
By participating in the campaign “Nebūk daiktistas” (“Don’t be a Thingist”) you will not only help others with things they need, but also you will help to built a proper image of international students as energetic, creative, mobile, tolerant and  socially responsible people. At the same time you will help to increase the visibility of ESN in home institutions and local community.  
 
Campaign will be held from 1st to 16th of March. Soon more information will appear and each participating ESN section will indicate places where things can be left. All the given things will be registered in pagalbadaiktais.lt system. Each participator will be able to see its profile.
(e. g.: Profile of ESN Vilnius University, http://www.pagalbadaiktais.lt/dovanotojas/2313)
 
Event for all Lithuania HERE.
 
By pressing on your ESN sections's name below you will get more information about the project:

• ESN Vilnius University 
• ESN VGTU 
• ESN ŠU
• ESN KK
• ESN ISLB
• ESN VMU

 
If you belong to the section which is not mentioned above then you can contact to any other section in the city!

Go social with ESN!
Reach highier! Go further! Go social!
SE national coordinator: [email protected] 

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