House with Swiss comfort

Participants of the international camp “House of Europe” equipped the cozy room with a Swiss flavor in the Ponemontsy youth center. During the October week, they not only showed their talents in construction, design and decor, but also became acquainted with the traditions of the Swiss and Belarusian culture, charged with vivid emotions and the joy of real-life communication.

Representatives of various local branches of the YMCA Belarus, as well as guests from Switzerland, participated in the international camp. For a week they were working together, communicating, and sharing their experiences. During this time, we managed to go on an excursion in Lida, studied Belarusian folk dances and songs, held Belarusian, Swiss, song and music evenings.

– We have got a great team! –  says the camp director Stanislava Terentyeva. – The guys talked a lot and put their shoulders to the wheel.

According to Stanislava, she was particularly impressed with the diligence with which the Swiss room was rebuilt. They thought out the design: white-cherry curtains were put on the windows. Using the same fabric they sewed pillows. The walls were decorated with Swiss “vytsinanka”, and bunk beds – with pictures, symbols of Switzerland.

“For me, the three brightest gastronomic impressions about Belarus are Lidsky kvass, chocolate glazed curd bar and shashlyk,” says Oscar a member of the camp from Switzerland. – But seriously, the international camp brought me many vivid impressions. First of all, very good people gathered, they created an inspiring atmosphere. Secondly, we are very grateful to our chef Masha, who cared for us, cooked very tasty. Thirdly, we spent our free time cheerfully and sincerely, sang songs around the fire, talked a lot.

Oscar notes that there were people in the camp at Ponemontsy who especially inspired him. For example, Swiss Esther, who recently injured her leg and came to Belarus on crutches. She could refuse to visit. And everyone would understand her. But Esther not only arrived in Belarus, but also actively worked in the Ponemontsy youth center.

Oscar drew attention to Stanislava Terentyeva. A few years ago she was an ordinary volunteer. And this time she performed the difficult work of the camp director, showed herself as a good manager. “It’s nice to see that good leaders grow up in the YMCA Belarus,” said Oscar.

According to him, Sebastian, who came from Switzerland, also deserves high praise. He suggested interesting ideas, very carefully carried out carpentry work, inspired others.

The international camp in the Ponemontsy youth center has already become a good tradition. Last year, German and Belarusian volunteers spent a week together. They arranged a room in German style. This year, the Swiss room was opened, and next, as planned, the Dutch room will be decorated. Participation in such meetings helps young people from different countries to get acquainted with the culture and traditions of other nations, to find new friends, to acquire useful skills.

Text of Ruslan Ananyeu
Translation of Maryia Khvedantsevich  

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