Janja and Karla embarked on a beautiful journey to Istanbul, where they participated in intensive training on the art of working with aluminium foil. As volunteers and ALE participants at Zasavje AEC, they joined representatives from other AECs under the Erasmus+ accreditation of the Association of IGAE Centres of Slovenia. The experience lasted for a few days and provided them with invaluable moments of exploration and creation, which will undoubtedly enrich them long after they return home.

On the first day, they enthusiastically explored the magical corners of the diverse city, followed by intensive work sessions. Creating with aluminium foil proved to be challenging yet inspiring. In the following days, Janja and Karla, along with the rest of the group, worked intensively to strengthen their skills and knowledge. They explored various modes of transport, admired works of art, learned new techniques and indulged in the charms of Istanbul. Despite their tiredness, they were full of energy and motivation, which further strengthened their commitment to learning and creating.

On the last day, they left Istanbul grateful and satisfied. They brought back not only new skills and knowledge but also unforgettable memories, new friendships and a sense of inner fulfilment. They will undoubtedly share their inspiration and joy with all of us, including through workshops on creating with aluminium foil, which they will conduct in the coming months.

We gathered as a pleasant group of strangers who soon became acquaintances and relaxed entirely in our daily shared activities. Our group had delightful and warm companions, Mojca and Lea, along with our hosts Onur and Hikmet, who ensured safe travel around Istanbul and its underground. We owe a big thank you to the dear hodjas; they were all very kind, approachable and fun. Unfortunately, I don’t remember their names except for Feyza’s. In the big city, I was surprised by the crowds, chaotic traffic and stray animals everywhere, which are very well cared for. Every morning, we were awakened by the singing from the mosque tower near our hotel. Each majestic building tells its own story. The locals were ready to help at every turn. I felt completely safe and never even thought that anything could go wrong. It was a wonderful experience, discovering a different world, a different culture, customs and traditions and the rhythm of a city of millions. I am infinitely grateful to have been part of this training and to have learned.

Karla Lužar

The Turkish experience was indeed something special. It wasn’t just about gaining new knowledge but also other experiences. Indeed, we could have learned the art of working with aluminium foil at home with a good teacher but being among the locals and learning about their way of social life is entirely different. The hosts did an excellent job, fulfilling all our needs, even taking us shopping, not to mention their sweets and divine coffee. We also shopped happily, as the Turkish bazaars are a Mecca for buyers and savvy sellers. We visited some of their cultural landmarks as well, and I was particularly impressed by the Basilica Cistern.

Such an experience in my retirement years is invaluable. It proves that if we are healthy, we retirees can still be very active and valuable. I am already looking forward to sharing the acquired knowledge with others, along with new experiences and acquaintances.

Janja Vrbnjak

Such experiences truly enrich individuals and encourage creativity, learning and intercultural understanding. Janja and Karla are proof that travel and participation in training are opportunities for personal and professional growth, providing invaluable experiences that enhance both life and work. They will bring their new knowledge as volunteers to the Multigenerational Centre Zasavje AEC.

More highlights are available in the photo gallery.

Nikolaja Bukovšek (nika.bukovsek@zlu.si), Zasavje AEC

© 2017-2024 Slovenian Institute for Adult Education

​The publication is co-financed by the Ministry of Education.

ISSN 2630-2926

Slovenian Institute for Adult Education
Ministry of Education

Published by Slovenian Institute for Adult Education (SIAE), Šmartinska 134a, SI-1000 Ljubljana | Editor-in-chief: Zvonka Pangerc Pahernik, MSc (E: zvonka.pangerc@acs.si) | Editor: Ana Peklenik (E: ana.peklenik@acs.si) | Other members of the editorial board: Zvonka Pangerc Pahernik, MSc, dr Nataša Potočnik, Directress of SIAE, dr Tanja Možina, Tanja Vilič Klenovšek, MSc and dr Tanja Rupnik Vec | Computer solution: Franci Lajovic (T: 01 5842 555, E: franci.lajovic@acs.si) | Translation/proofreading: Mesto znanja, izobraževanje in svetovanje za osebno rast, Petra Cvek, s. p.  | Design: Larisa Hercog | Corrective reading: Zvonka Pangerc Pahernik, MSc, and Mateja Pečar | W: https://enovicke.acs.si/en/home/

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