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“Journeys of sustainability” – Home for a Number of Participants

It is amazing how some first time interactions might become a start for fruitful long-term cooperation; how travelling around and experiences of others might become an inspiration for yourself and people surrounding you; how hospitality and warmness of people might open your eyes for new things, new projects.

“Journeys of Sustainability” unintentionally became home for many people, a place, where cultures interviewe, exchange and come up with new, bright ideas. The last event of the project, hosted by CSDS in Ho Chi Minh City, gave an opportunity to look back at all that had been done and brainstorm the future possible projects. We discussed giving life to a new project, connected with journalism topic. Some Asian countries just recently started receiving freedome of word, freedome of expression. It would be amazing for some European countries to share knowledge, help in proper education and appropriate training and, in the end, create a common online media to connect two parts of the world – Asia and Europe together even closer.

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During our moving training we ecountered with local, sometimes isolated societies in the south of thew country, that are facing extreme difficulties in finding ways of funding themselves. Lack of jobs and appropriate education make it almost impossible for people to find new sources of income rather than fishing or salt manufacturing by hand, involving a lot of manual labour force. Nevertheless, people are friendly and always reply with respect and dignity. Moving training turned out to be a deep intercultural and social manifestation; we discovered the problems that Vietnamese people faced after a huge amount of land had been destroyed with pesticides – sumptuous mangrove tree park had been fully replanted by locals in 1970’s. During our visit we had a chance to fully immerse ourselves into “wild life” and stay a few nights in this nature park, while visiting local communities during the day.

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The main feature of the trip was inspiration. Inspiration to work better in our own societies, inspiration to work on new and better projects, and, of course, inspiration to be more sustainable ourselves. I truly believe that changes in the world start from making changes in yourself, in the community around you. And I am thankful for the opportunity to be part of the project and to rethink, to update the philosophy of my own daily behaviour and to use this privilegy to help others around.

Jelena Ushakova

University of Latvia

CEO at YOUNG.LV

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The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsi­ble for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

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