Youth groups from Belgium
Did you use to read “Little Explorers” and try to learn knots as kids? Did you know that Huey, Louie and Dewey were scouts? Scouting is the world’s largest voluntary movement of informal education, open to all, regardless of origin, race or creed. It contributes, through peer education, to young people’s physical, mental, social and intellectual development, with an emphasis on outdoor life. This year, five youth groups from Belgium, a total of 130-150 scouts, aged 16-25, will get to know our own country life. They will successively visit our area from June 27th to July 20th and they will offer volunteer work.
An action with a lot of benefits
Youth groups from Belgium have been coming to Methana since 2011 and have contributed significantly to the trails opening. This year, they will volunteer various agricultural activities in the area. They will also participate in the beach cleanings and the maintenance of Methana’s paths. Finally, they will be hosted by and guided around the Arboriculture Station of Galatas.
Apart from the obvious benefit of the volunteered work, the groups’ interaction with the local community is also important. On the one hand, the community will have the opportunity to get in touch with the idea of scouting. On the other hand, the groups will get to know the area at an age when the bonds that develop are maintained in the long run and strong bridges are built.
The action is and initiative of Belgian Eliane Pauwels, now Methana’s permanent resident. She tells us: “In Belgium, this is commonplace. When children reach the age of 16-17, they travel abroad, offering volunteer work. They work all year round to ensure money for this trip. In Methana, the youth groups from Belgium were like a spark that set things in motion. Also, these children have the opportunity to get to know the real Greece. Personally, I’m very happy that I was able to help the area in a way.”
This year the action will take place in collaboration with the Galatas Professional Association and the Galatas Arboriculture Station. The partnership of Dimitris Vlachos and the Galatas Professional Association, Katerina Sakelliou and Odyssey Glamping, Elias Rizos and Volcanotrails, and of course Katheti, with Tasos Rodis, who will contribute to the groups’ motivation, is important.
Katheti will also guide the groups around Poros’s narrow streets, in the form of a game. After leading each group’s members to a specific area, we will let them “get lost” in the alleys and find their way to the predetermined meeting point. So, if you see a group of young people from Belgium with scouts clothes lost in Poros’s alleys, don’t be surprised, just help them reach their destination!
The groups cover their travel expenses, so this is a self-funded action, which only has benefits. And this is because they come eager to offer and get to know the area.
Katheti supports this action, because it contributes to the development of sustainable tourism in our region. In addition, the groups’ involvement in agricultural work brings them closer to the local community’s way of life. The trails maintenance and the beach cleanings contribute to the preservation and promotion of our natural wealth. Thus, strong bonds develop, which have the ability to be maintained for a long time.