SIS Erasmus+ team gets a warm welcome in Greece

After two years of digital meetings and one digital mobility hosted by Germany, Erasmus+ team members Sahil Chowdhury, Onni Kaivonen, Nina Leger, Fabian Schuster, Laura Zvaigzne alongside their coordinators Mr Andrew Ioanou and Mrs. Anneli Thompson, touched down in Kalampaka, Greece, at the foot of the Meteora mountains to join the other teams in this project’s first physical mobility. Just as Mr AI predicted, the teams from Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Romania, and Sweden were warmly welcomed by Team Greece with an opening ceremony of Greek music, choirs, speeches and traditional dancing where everyone joined in. 

Teams presented and developed their understanding of the SG7, ‘Reusable Energy’, throughout the week through presentations, workshops and visits to an environmental hydroelectric centre. We visited two of the six active monasteries on the Meteora mountains as well as an afternoon hike to see the caves many monks lived in which was a beautiful and memorable experience for all.

We took the bus to Lake Plastira which was turquoise blue, and where we enjoyed an afternoon of water biking and canoeing. No trip to a lake is complete without at least one dip in its icy waters which was provided by half of team Netherlands, when they tipped over their canoe. They got to experience an ice cold dip which many Swedes enjoy throughout the winter out of choice.

Great teamwork to gather dry clothes from across the teams though the Greek sun was quick to dry them up too.

Team members developed friendships that led to basketball games, walks around the cozy town of Kalampaka with its many great food establishments for dinners and unique shops.

Wilderness, waves, and work. SIS were excited to get back to face-to-face meetings for the Erasmus+ programme

Despite the Greek students not being able to host our students in their homes due to the local restrictions, they did a fantastic job hosting us with their warm hospitality and friendships throughout the week together. The visits to the famous monasteries on the cliffs as well as an afternoon hike of the Meteora mountains was a beautiful and memorable experience for all. Sahil shared,’Trying new things has always been something I love but this Erasmus+ mobility really exceeded my expectations of meeting and getting to know amazing people from around Europe’. We departed Greece with full hearts and tummies for sure. 

After two years of virtual meetings, particularly amongst the coordinators, it felt like we already were fast friends and family when we finally met face to face. Language and cultural barriers were broken down throughout the week as we came to an understanding of cooperation and friendship around the theme of saving our earth by making daily differences in our lives and our communities in our united goal to make a difference to climate change.

The mobility to Weesp, in the Netherlands awaits team members Juliette Darrigade, Dorin Loubel, Leah Seifert, Shangchen Xie, Junseo (Clara) Cheon which will take place between May 15-21, 2022. They are getting their bikes out to practice before they will join their host ‘siblings’ on their daily bike commute to school and other exciting local activities. 

Stockholm International School will host the Erasmus+ teams in May 2023. We look forward to welcoming the teams to our amazing SIS community and hope families will be willing to host the students when they arrive for the Sweden mobility. More information to follow.

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