This Erasmus+ funded New Innovations project took place in June/ July 2022 with 28 young people from across the UK and the Balkan region taking part in week-long residencies in the UK and Serbia exploring entrepreneurship and employability.
During our residency week, we hosted our participants in Salford, running activities in Oldham and showcasing trips, visits and activities including Oldham Coliseum, Manchester Art Gallery, Band on the Wall, The Met and Bury Art Museum and Media City UK.
On the return week in Belgrade the group spent time exploring the history of Serbia and the Balkan region, discussing and learning about the complex politics of this region while also taking part in a range of training exercises.
Upon returning to the UK, our participants expressed how much the project had meant to them.
‘Throughout the whole experience we really got to see the similarities and differences between the participants from the different Balkan countries’
‘Seeing how people from different countries respond to art helped to break down barriers and for us to learn about one another’
‘Finding out about how we have more in common across cultures is very powerful’
When asked about the importance and value of cultural exchange, our participants said:
‘Cultural exchanges are an experience, something that you live through. What’s the difference between seeing a concert through a video and actually being there? Because you’re living it and that’s what a cultural exchange is, it’s real’.
A huge thanks to our participants Phelan, Zoe, Daniel, Chloe, Taylor and Ibrahim.