Experience Report

Young and Rural: Activate Youth in Rural Areas

August 28 - September 3 2023

Alqueva, Portugal 


The Erasmus+ Youth Exchange program is renowned for its ability to bring young people together from diverse backgrounds to foster cultural exchange, personal growth, and the exploration of important societal topics. This report encapsulates the enriching experience of our Youth Exchange program held in Alqueva, Portugal, from August 28, 2023, to September 3, 2023. During this week-long journey, we delved into meaningful discussions, formed strong bonds, and explored the beautiful region of Alqueva.

One of the standout aspects of our Erasmus+ Youth Exchange experience was the remarkable camaraderie among participants. The program brought together individuals from various countries, backgrounds, and cultures. Despite our diverse origins, we quickly bonded, creating a welcoming and supportive environment. These connections transcended national borders and blossomed into lifelong friendships. The sense of unity and understanding among participants was indeed one of the highlights of our experience.

Our program's success can be attributed in no small part to the dedicated and charismatic organizer, Julio. Julio's tireless efforts ensured that every aspect of our exchange ran smoothly. His ability to communicate and coordinate with participants, as well as his deep understanding of the Erasmus+ program's objectives, played a pivotal role in making our experience unforgettable. Julio's passion for youth development was evident, and his commitment to our growth was inspiring.

The central theme of our Youth Exchange program was "Youth in Rural Areas." Through workshops, discussions, and hands-on experiences, we explored the unique challenges faced by young people living in rural regions. These conversations allowed us to gain a deeper understanding of the issues and potential solutions related to rural youth empowerment. It was enlightening to learn about the resilience and resourcefulness of young people in rural areas and to exchange ideas on how to support them better.

 A highlight of our experience was the opportunity to explore the stunning Lake Alqueva. This vast reservoir not only provided a picturesque backdrop for our activities but also served as a symbol of the natural beauty of the Alqueva region. We engaged in environmental discussions, water sports, and enjoyed peaceful moments by the lakeside. Lake Alqueva left an indelible impression on all of us, reminding us of the importance of preserving our natural resources.

Our program also included visits to two charming towns in the Alqueva region – Portel and Évora. Portel offered a glimpse into rural Portuguese life, and we had the chance to interact with locals, sample delicious cuisine, and appreciate the town's historical significance. Évora, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, dazzled us with its well-preserved medieval architecture and rich cultural heritage. These excursions enhanced our understanding of the region's history and culture, leaving us with lasting memories.

In conclusion, our Erasmus+ Youth Exchange in Alqueva, Portugal, was an incredibly enriching and transformative experience. The strong bonds formed among participants, Julio's exceptional organizational skills, and our exploration of pertinent topics such as "Youth in Rural Areas" made this program a resounding success. The natural beauty of Lake Alqueva and the cultural richness of Portel and Évora added a unique dimension to our exchange.


This experience not only broadened our horizons but also reinforced the importance of international cooperation and understanding. We are deeply grateful for the opportunity to participate in this program and look forward to applying the knowledge and friendships we gained to create positive change in our respective communities.