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Professionals from the Danube: Sorina Ursu

It’s time to introduce a new interview we conducted, part of a series with valuable people from the Danube. Their impressive life stories will inspire maybe… the young generation and will promote maybe… the Danube volunteering spirit. Read it and think about it… we|you| I love Danube!

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#youth #PayItForward #Community

Career. After going through a challenging time of trying to find out what I would like to do for the next years of my life that would have meaning and purpose and everything, I come to a sudden realization that you simply need to look for your passions, which should be fairly easy. Find what you like and love to do more, and that is your starting point. How easy is to find that burning passion nowadays, I am not sure. Teenagers live a completely different life than what I experienced in the day. Just to make its bit more clear, the term social media hadn’t been invented back then. We always start somewhere and somehow end up in a different spot. And that is very normal. Try to always keep an open mind and embrace and accept diversity. There is so much to learn when you engage on a new and unfamiliar path, and I know it might seem scary, but there is light at the end of the tunnel. Look at my example, I started out with foreign languages, pretty basic now that I think about it, but when I graduated, career opportunities came to light in a different direction and it turned out fine. Looking back, everything I’ve done connected, although it didn’t seem so sometimes, and it got me ready for the next step. Doing translations wasn’t going to be my thing for a long time anyway, now that I think about it. However, moving to an English/ French speaking country, you realize that your background, or part of it, is going to be crucial in getting familiarized with your new home. And you know what? I couldn’t have got a better boost to begin with. If you feel stuck, listen to the advice others have to offering, look for role-models, mentors, learn from them and start building. A career is not something you get in a package in the mail. It needs to be built and for that you need time. It all starts with a decision. And if you feel you haven’t found your calling, search again, decide and start again. Be in a learning mode all the time, take a course, go back to school if you can and change direction. Careers are not set in stone. You doing what you love matters the most.

Volunteering. I think I heard this term first time a long time ago, when in Romania volunteering wasn’t really a thing, or it wasn’t very common at least. I was close to finishing high school and I remember that last summer vacation, I tried to find something to do. Paid or not. And that is when I actually thought about volunteering in the true sense. Dunare.EDU was at its beginnings then. And seeing it progress as it has through the years, is amazing. What is also amazing is the opportunity the young are now given in a small community, and this opportunity can support and guide them in their future careers. So a big shout-out for this wonderful initiative! Apart from currently being a full time mom, I am also involved in some volunteering activities and what I can tell is that becoming a volunteer is a good way to learn. If you have a passion for something, other than what you do for living, assuming you love what you do, then find an opportunity and get involved. If you have a strong sense of community, then go ahead and volunteer out of your comfort zone. The rewards are immense. Volunteering is all about community and yourself, it is an ideal win-win scenario where you have the opportunity to learn and develop existing or new skills, and you get to give it back to the community and to the people, someway or another.

Volunteering has gotten to such enormous dimensions now, that it is harder to be accepted for a volunteer position than for a regular paid one. Who would have thought? So are these two, career and volunteering, connected? You could have a career of volunteering, but still need to pay bills. To sum up, I guess they do go hand in hand. Find what you like and do it well! Good luck.

 

Thank you Sorina!

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Profesioniști de la Dunăre: Ioana Traistă

Un nou interviu cu Ioana Traistă.we|you| I love Danube!

#youth #PayItForward #Community

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De unde ești exact și ce te definește ca om?

Am crescut lângă Dunăre, dar abia târziu mi-am dat seama cât mă definește. Părinții mei s-au mutat din Banat în Mehedinți când eram mică. Am folosit mereu regionalisme din Banat în casă și nu am folosit perfectul simplu pentru că noi nu eram de „acolo”. Au trecut anii și mi-a fost greu să mă descriu ca aparținând unei zone din România. Nu mă simțeam completă nici când vorbeam despre Oltenia, nici când povesteam despre Banat.  Abia când aveam 22 de ani, studiam în Olanda și am călătorit la Budapesta m-am simțit acasă datorită Dunării. Atunci am înțeles că Dunărea e acasă.

Dunărea ma centrează. Îmi aduce aminte de cine sunt dincolo de lucrurile pe care le fac și le vreau. Mă ajută să mă bucur de acum și aici.  E important să fiu sinceră cu mine și cu cei din jur, să mă ascult și să aleg lucrurile care mă definesc, nu pentru că așa trebuie și așa se face. Atât timp cât sunt aliniată cu valorile mele, știu că voi învăța ceva din orice voi face.

Ai facut voluntariat?  Ne spui și povestea ta preferată despre ce inseamnă voluntariatul.

Am început să voluntariez în facultate și-mi pare rău că nu am făcut acest lucru și mai devreme. Mi-am făcut prieteni, am învățat extrem de multe lucruri noi, mi-a fost frică, am experimentat, am învățat să fiu responsabilă. Dar mai presus de toate, am aflat ce înseamnă să fii etic în tot ceea ce faci și să faci lucrurile bine pentru că așa simți, nu pentru că vei primi o recompensă externă. Voluntariatul este parte din viața mea. Nu-l văd separat de ceea ce fac zi de zi. E o modalitate de a reacționa la probleme pe care le vedem în jurul nostru și de a ne menține activi civici.  Am voluntariat la Prime România (o asociație pentru studenții la comunicare și relații publice) și Chance for Life (o asociație care lucrează cu copii instituționalizați) când eram studentă. Am continuat cu GRASP (o rețea de tineri profesioniști români care trăiesc în diasporă) când am început să lucrez, iar acum o mare parte din activitatea mea de voluntariat este cu Cercul Donatorilor Bruxelles, o inițiativă prin conectăm românii din Bruxelles cu proiecte din România pentru care strângem fonduri. Prin voluntariat, înțeleg mai bine lumea în care trăiesc și-mi folosesc resursele pentru a încerca să dau înapoi ce am primit de la ea.

Care sunt sfaturile tale pentru a urma o carieră

Am început să nu mai cred în carieră. Îmi doresc o viață în care să simt că pot contribui. Profesia este parte din viața asta, iar cel mai important pentru mine este să fiu un om bun. Poate suna puțin siropos, dar dacă la finalul zilei mă înțeleg și știu de ce am reacționat într-un anumit fel, știu de unde pornesc a doua zi. O carieră fabuloasă mi-o pot clădi ușor, o viață fericită vine din relațiile cu ceilalți, relația cu tine însăți/însuți, din cum alegi să-ți petreci timpul. Dacă am grijă de mine și de fericirea mea, cariera va fi exact unde trebuie să fie și o voi clădi pe valorile mele, nu prea că am nevoie de validare externă.

Care crezi că este calea de urmat pentru cooperarea de tineret la Dunăre si Marea Neagră?

M-aș bucura să văd mai multe proiecte între asociații de la Dunăre/Marea Neagră, mai multe sărbători locale – trebuie să știm să sărbătorim, ca să știm cum să trecem peste probleme.  Mi-ar plăcea să mai văd o comunitate a dunărenilor care fac proiecte sau sprijină proiecte pentru sate și orașe de-a lungul Dunării.

Un mesaj final

Prețuiește relațiile din viața ta, mai ales pe cea cu tine! Nu poți oferi altora ceea ce nu-ți oferi ție.  Bucură-te de ceea ce ai să-ți oferi! Asta îmi reamintește mereu Dunărea !

 

Mulțumim Ioana!

 

 

 

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Professionals from the Danube: Irina Matetovici

It’s time to introduce a series of interviews we conducted with valuable people from the Danube. Their impressive life stories maybe… will inspire the young generation, maybe… will promote the Danube volunteering spirit. Read it and think about it… we|you| I love Danube!

#youth #PayItForward #Community

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What defines you, Irina?

I was born in Galati, Romania and now I live in Antwerp, Belgium. I am a curios biologist, interested in photography and stitching Romanian motifs to relax.

Were you a volunteer?

I had few years of intense voluntary activities, mostly during my university time. Now I get involved more in short term projects, either of mentoring or just extra hands when needed. One of my dearest projects was about promoting student-centered education in Romanian universities. We had a caravan and we were going from university to university organizing debates and promoting students rights. It was a great experience and beside meeting and making many friends, I am using most of the methods and practices we were promoting with my current students.

How would you describe one day in your professional life?

A day at my working place can be very dynamic, usually is a combination between taking care of my flies and parasites, followed by different experiments in the laboratory or it can be full focus on genomic data analysis. More specific I work as a post-doc at the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, with the tsetse fly, the vector for sleeping sickness, a dreadful disease present in Sub-Saharan Africa. I am trying to understand how the tsetse fly immune system is working and potentially identify molecules that could be used in interrupting the transmission of the disease.

What career advice you would give?

My advice to students deciding on their career is to follow their heart and choose a career where excitement is what will bring them there day by day. Not be too afraid of change or taking risks, expand your horizons and stay up to date. And is never too late to start something that you like.

Back to the region now. What way should we follow for a better cooperation in the Danube and Black Sea region?

The Danube on one side and the Black Sea on the other bring together many diverse communities, I believe we all care about our region, and that’s already a mutual interest. Joint projects that tackle our region could improve the interaction and collaboration. Biodiversity preservation and conservation should be constant on your agendas. While few decades ago more than 30 fish species were able to maintain their stocks by natural reproduction in the Danube basin, today we have only two (data from Joint Danube Survey). Moreover, majority of the migratory fish like sturgeons and Danube salmon are heavily endangered or close to extinction, due to habitat loss or over-exploitation (data from Joint Danube Survey). In the end it comes to us to make Danube, blue again.

A final message…

I would like to felicitate Dunare.EDU for the great organization they created. I’ve been following you for some time and I am inspired by your devotement and the positive energy you bring with every project. I wish you many successful projects, activities and collaborations.

Thank you Irina!

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Raport anual 2017

Ne aducem aminte cu drag de aceste luni in care am invatat din nou, zi de zi ce inseamna munca de voluntariat in echipa. In urmatoarele pagini invitam cititorul intr-o scurta introducere in activitatile pe care le-am organizat in comunitate cu tinerii din regiune. Mesajul nostru de 8 ani este acelasi: implicarea tinerilor dunareni in luarea deciziilor, in cooperarea regionala si internationala cu beneficii pentru formarea lor si comunitatea din care fac parte. Si in 2017 am reusit acest lucru prin proiecte nationale si europene.
Ne dorim sa putem continua activitatea noastra in 2018 si ne-am propus urmatoarele: sa organizam o tabara international la Dunare! Suna ambitios, nu? Invitam partenerii sa ne contacteze pentru detalii.

Raportul anual aici.

 

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connecting Danube for YOUth at Targ.Balci.Fest in August

Danube.EDU team would like to announce the intention to organize an international camp at the Danube river within the locally known Targ.Balci.Fest 2018 edition.

This will be a non-formal education week with activities for youth. Its aim is to create a good ecosystem for learning, cultural exchanges and innovation.

The motto of the 2018 edition will be: connecting Danube for YOUth. Among the topics on which we will build the programme we mention:

Environmental friendly actions

Social entrepreneurship and startup ideas

Sport for action

There will be a small general fee for participation of 60 euros in order to assure the programme logistics and local travel. Accommodation will be assured by Danube.EDU team in local hosting families. Each participant will be responsible for food, transport to and from Oltenita.

Important to remember:

  • Register by 15.07.2018, link tbc
  • Camp taking place on 26-31.08.2018

 

Join us!

 

About/A propos de/ Despre Dunare.EDU

EN

The aim of the association Danube.EDU is to promote international cooperation in the field of youth, supporting the involvement of young people in the life of the community and stimulating cooperation activities between countries in the Danube-Black Sea region. Visit us at www.dunaredu.org

FR

Les principaux objectifs de l’association Danube.EDU résident dans la promotion de la coopération internationale dans le secteur de la jeunesse ; le soutien à la prise d’initiative des jeunes au sein de la vie de leur(s) communauté(s) ; ainsi que le développement d’activité transnationales parmi pays bordant le Danube et la mer Noire.

RO

Scopul Asociaţiei este promovarea cooperarii internationale in domeniul tineretului, susţinerea implicarii tinerilor in activitatile comunitatii, stimularea activităţilor ce au ca scop cooperarea tarilor riverane la Dunare si Marea Neagra.

Ne gasiti @Oltenita «  la casuta » sau online

Dunare.EDU website   www.dunaredu.org

Pagina FB  & Linkedin

 

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Donatii echipamente de birou

Echipa de voluntari Dunare.EDU are nevoie sa inlocuiasca echipamentele IT de la birou. Facem apel la organizatiile care au acces la 1-2 calculatore de birou moderne functionale sau 1 imprimanta sau 1 proiector sa considere actul de donatie catre asociatie.

Pentru contact va rugam sa folositi urmatoarele detalii: dunare.edu@gmail.com attn Madalin.

 

Despre ONG Dunare.EDU

Scopul Asociaţiei este promovarea cooperarii internationale in domeniul tineretului, susţinerea implicarii tinerilor in activitatile comunitatii, stimularea activităţilor ce au ca scop cooperarea tarilor riverane la Dunare si Marea Neagra.

Ne gasiti @Oltenita «  la casuta » sau online

Dunare.EDU website   www.dunaredu.org

Pagina FB  & Linkedin

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Lifting Each Others Up

We participated in the Active Youth exchange on 16th-23rd October. There we were represented by 2 new volunteers: Lorena, Andreea and Madalin from ACTIVE Board, Ioana from the Prep-Team and Malina from some previous projects. We spoke about refugees and alcohol harm, we met new people and also our old friends. Andreea and Lorena felt really included; they were very interactive and happy because they were there. It was a very productive week because we left from there with new projects and new future collaborators. For our team, the best thing was to hear the stories about alcohol from people who were alcoholics. We also visited Venice and we had a great time in Italy. That’s what Dunare.EDU volunteers do : involves youth in the projects to improve their skills and knowledge, learns about new cultures and interacts with new young people. #dunareedu #active#youth

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EPTO | Coaching Module on Peer Education

Echipa Dunare.EDU, formată din voluntarii noştri: Neferu Ana Maria, Chercea Ella, Paraschiv Marius şi Laura Stoica, a participat în perioada 25.09.2016- 01.10.2016 în cadrul proiectului *Coaching Module on Peer Education* EPTO| European Peer Training Organisation ce s-a desfăşurat în Maribor, Slovenia! Acolo au învăţat cum să dezvolte abilităţi precum : cunoaşterea şi înţelegerea sinelui, lucrul în echipă, metode simple şi utile de învăţare a informaţiei prin activităţi nonformale. Descriind sumar proiectul, participanţii au învăţat cum să îi înveţe şi ei, la rândul lor, pe alţii despre anumite teme. În urma acestui proiect sunt responsabili pentru implementarea proiectului pe plan local, de a găsi tineri doritori şi de a implica cât mai multe persoane.

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ZIM – Report of Monitoring Alcohol Marketing by young people in Estonia, Latvia, Romania, Sweden, Poland and Ukraine

Zoom in Media Project was a very ambitious project, it was not only to gather research results, it was also educate young people about the effects of alcohol marketing on drinking behavior and national regulations on alcohol marketing, in letting the research be conducted by young people (in some cases inexperienced in the field of research). Looking back the aims were partially achieved:  This report and the national report give a snapshot of the various ways that young people encounter alcohol advertising in their daily lives; it has focused the participants’ attention on the subject of alcohol marketing and its effects, as well as the national regulations; in various phases of the project it became apparent that the goal of acquainting young people with research through this project, however amendable, was not conducive to maintaining the quality of the research tools and dataset that was required for serious scientific analysis. Concluding we can say that Zoom in Media was a partly successful project in which young people have learned a lot and have more than made up any lack of research skills with enthusiasm and vigor.

http://activeeurope.org/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&layout=category&task=category&id=6&Itemid=648&limitstart=0

 

Danube.EDU represented by Madalina and Ioana

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Danube.EDU part of ACTIVE Board

The third ACTIVE Board meeting took place in Šala, Slovakia from 3-4 September 2016. The Board meeting was on the margins of the Workshop “From evidence to advocacy – Child Rights based tools for protecting kids from alcohol marketing” that was organised September 2, 2016 in Bratislava, Slovakia by IOGT International. It was a great opportunity to combine two important activities for further development of our movement. Since the board meeting was physical meeting, board member had an opportunities to get to know each other better and build the team that will work together in coming years. Also, subjects regarding next youth camp, youth exchange in Italy, sustainable structure, political work and closer coperation with IOGT International were discussed, as well as many others. ACTIVE was happy to host Kristina Sperkova, President of IOGT International and learn more about present processes that are taking place and get deeper understanding of importance of joint work towards building societies without alcohol and other drugs. Read more about the meeting of the board at Active website.

http://activeeurope.org/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&layout=category&task=category&id=6&Itemid=648&limitstart=0

Danube.EDU represented by Madalin N.