Dance as a medium for change is youth exchange funded by the European Union. This project is part of the Erasmus plus programme. Host organization is Urbana mladež while partners are Asociatia Babilon Travel from Romania and Union on the deaf from Bulgaria.
Taking into consideration stress as a leading problem within juvenile groups, more attention should be given to this topic. As most people of all age groups find it difficult to deal with stress, they often find it easier to look for relief in mind-numbing activities, such as watching television or scrolling through social media.
With the ongoing pandemic and its effects on mental and general health, especially that of young people, the project developed by this particular group aims to tackle the problem of young people’s declining well-being. Based on restrictions of movement and social gatherings following the COVID-19 pandemic, partners of the project have noted several issues in young people taking part in their workshops, such as feelings of isolation and loneliness, leading to anxiety and stress. The workshops enabled the affected group to actively participate in locating and solving the issues they saw as challenging.
To incorporate physical activity in a less formidable way into young people’s life, light could be cast on activities such as dance. Numerous benefits on general health have been confirmed in relation to physical exercise, i. e. dance for that matter. Regular exercise is connected to a better blood flow, leading to an increase of muscle mass, furthermore it improves flexibility and joint response and results in overall better strength. While regular exercise’s results on corporeal well-being are clear, its influence on mental health is often overseen. With a better and stronger body, but also a sense of being active, there come many mental and emotional benefits. Such are a result of serotonin release which is boosted during exercise. This chemical produced in the central nervous system regulates happiness, sleep and waking, appetite, nausea and the ability to learn, making it the gateway to truly relieving the harmful effects of stress.
This project aims to implement dance as an alleviation method for stress and make it a mechanism for healthy coping.
The objectives of the project are:
-To identify and approach stressors and effects of stress that are troubling for the participants
-To familiarize participants with manifestations of stress
-To make dance a platform for learning successful coping mechanisms
-To present the benefits of physical and social activity on one’s overall health and motivate participants to take part in such activities more often
-To increase intercultural awareness and a sense of EU identity
-To promote Erasmus+ and the opportunities provided for EU youth
It is expected that the project should impact participants in a positive way, so that they develop health coping mechanisms and implement them in their everyday lives.