The Youth Center of Epirus participated in the training course "Mindfulness" that took place in Wisła, Poland from 10th of March until 19th March 2020.
Mindfulness can often describe as “the psychological process of bringing one's attention to experiences occurring in the present moment”. Nowadays, it is widely used all over the world as a form of a relaxation techniques, as well as to reduce stress, or even depression or anxiety. Mindfulness can be also used as a tool to contribute towards tolerance and cultural intelligence.
We often do our activities ‘on autopilot’ (e.g. brushing our teeth). Our thoughts are often guided in the same way. On the one hand, it helps our brain to cope with incredibly big amount of information, by categorizing it with such ‘mental scripts’. On the other hand, however, not being aware of this, and not being mindful (thus, allowing our minds to work on an automatic mental process) leads to stereotypes and prejudice, also towards people from other cultures and countries (e.g. immigrants).
Therefore, we believe that being aware of our own ‘mental scripts’ and being mindful of them (& realizing them and the process around it), can greatly contribute for being more tolerant and mindful for other people, and fight stereotypes and prejudice. Even though some of youth workers already know the concept of Mindfulness, they very rarely use it in their work with youth, neither using it as a tool for promotion of tolerance and combating stereotypes and prejudice.
Therefore, aims of this training for youth workers are as follow:
Unfortunately, the training course had to be stopped 3 days after its start, due to the situation with COVID-19. Thanks to this decision, all participants were able to reach their countries before the border was closed and are now safe in their homes.
This project was co-funded by European Union, the Erasmus+ Program