Who is on Your Back?

The game

On Wednesday 26th April, EVS volunteers leaded a biodiversity game in Youth Café Drumshanbo. The name of the game is «Who’s on Your Back?». The concept was reviewing Irish wildlife through team communication.

Rules of the game

We prepared sticky labels with the names of well-known animals on it. For instance: whale, rabbit, snake and so on. Then we stuck the labels on everyone’s back without letting them know «who they were». Each member had to find out who was on their back by asking questions to the others in the team. Questions were asked in such a way that the answers could be just «Yes» or «No». The player could ask no more than two questions then it was other’s player turn. Once they found out who they were they could play again with another animal on their backs.

The result

It was an useful game to develop children’s communication skills and attention. They were listening to each other carefully and with interest. The environmental outcome of the game  showed that children are really curious about Irish wild life and they  guessed the answers very quickly. It was great craic!

Musical chairs recycling game

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Yesterday, 22th March, EVS volunteers organised a recycling game in Youth Café Drumshanbo. It was based on musical chairs but the aim was learning more about good recycling habits.

We had developed this game before with an energy quiz and it was a complete success that’s why we decided to do it again. The main idea was dancing around while the music was playing and try to find a chair when it stopped. The kid who was standing because he/she wasn’t able to find an available chair, had to answer a recycling question. A correct answer meant the kid could continue playing, however an incorrect answer meant he/she was out of the game. It was great! They took their time to think and they chose their answers carefully. At the end we concluded that our previous recycling workshops were effective because they have pretty clear what a good recycling habit is. We will see them next week!

Last activities before Christmas with our sustainable group


Energy Game

Last Wednesday 30th November, the EVS volunteers Kate and Andrea, developed a dynamic energy quiz in Drumshanbo Youth Café. It was the second session we had with the same group of children between 10-12 years old. The game was based on musical chairs. Instead of being directly  out of the game when someone was standing, we gave them the opportunity to continue  playing if they answered correctly an energy question.

The purpose of the quiz is learning more about renewable energy and energy saving tips while they have fun playing a game they are familiar with. We found it was an effective approach to mix fun and knowledge. The children were full of energy and inspiration. They answered the questions quickly enough to return to the game. We can say it was a complete success, while playing we heard comments such as: “this is great fun!”, “let’s play again”. We were delighted to share our time with them and to contribute to their non-formal learning.

Art from rubbish

15387476_1809160116026000_473100069_oAfter that, we had our last session with them before Christmas. Our EVS volunteers in cooperation with Drumsanbo local pubs “Conways” and “The Millrace”  collected recyclable rubbish to create Christmas decorations.

The idea was to show a simple example of sustainability and recycling through  art. GEAI volunteers, Andrea, Kate and Alex went to Drumshanbo’s pubs and asked the staff to keep caps and cans from non alcohol beverage during the weekend. They collected a lot of bottle caps and cans. Using them Kate and Andrea showed  the group of children how to create  a snowman as an example of Christmas decorations.

Children were excited! They created different kinds of snowmen using cans, caps and other materials.

It was really enjoyable. During the weekend they sold their snowmen on Drumshanbo local Christmas market.

We were  delighted to collaborate with Youth Café staff members and we are really thankful to the pubs. We know this weekend was profitable for our sustainable little group.15409820_1809157082692970_1290276233_o


It has been almost a month since we, the new EVS volunteers, arrived in Leitrim to work with GEAI. This week we attended some cultural events in Carrick-on-Shannon and Ballinaglera – great experiences!

On Thursday 4th October we enjoyed a concert at The Dock Arts Centre: Caitlin and Ciaran with special guest Siobhan O Donnell! It was our first traditional Irish music concert and we were delighted to hear them playing the fiddle and concertina as well as dancing to traditional tunes.  Siobhan O Donnell was brilliant at the guitar and she charmed us with her spectacular voice.


On Friday 5th, the Ballinaglera Traditional Music Weekend kicked off! A great concert was held in Ballinaglera Community Hall and we enjoyed the fun between flautist Marcus Hernon, his family and amazing singer Don Stiffe. Another immersion into Irish culture!

And that was not the end! Sunday evening saw us enjoying a traditional music session in Rynn’s Pub, Ballinaglera. People gathered together singing traditional songs and reciting poems as well as playing flutes, fiddles and guitars. Does everyone in Ireland play an instrument?  After that we went to Mulvey’s Pub where we listened to Ballinaglera’s “Young Stars”, children already proficient in Irish music. It was incredible to see how involved they are with traditional music at an early age.



Germany and German culture caught my attention a long time ago and became one of the most desirable countries to visit. After numerous problems encountered on the way to my dream, finally I succeeded! Finally! I’m going to Germany for three weeks! Thanks to my friends who have decided to get married and invited me to their place for engagement.

Overflowing with emotions, I tried to plan thoroughly my trip for be able to see all possible places possible with my modest budget. But it turned out even better than I could imagine.

The main place of my stay was Bonn – the capital of the Federal Republic of Germany (1949 -1990).

My main attention was paid to a cultural program which included visiting countless number of museums, churches, walks along the river, parks, and of course included “cultureless” adventures.

Various museums were visited, the famous Bonn Beethoven Museum and the museum of Egyptian culture in the University of Bonn, archaeological, historical, national, and for me as an architect were the most interesting art and architectural museums. For the first time in my life I saw the originals of famous artists such as Picasso, Andy Warhol, Salvador Dali, Max Ernst, Malevich, Ernst Ludwig Kircher, Marc Chagall, Otto Dix etc.

Because of this “cultural injection” I was in paradise, and like a drug addict I searched actively for the next “dose of art ecstasy”.

Incidentally, with regard to drug addicts, there is in Germany a special Government programme for drug addicts with strict control and drug addicts get for free their optimum desirable drug dose. So everyone is happy: for the addicts there is no need to rob, kill for “a moment of happiness,” plus well controlled what they use and where, also HIV protection. Very clever position, isn`t it ?! 😉

But let`s come back to one of my favorite topics – art museums. Of course, I was inspired and excited. Some of the masterpieces by world – renowned genius was fascinating, but some of them was weird.

Simply I love this series of works 🙂


This work by Jasper Johns is best known for his painting Flag (1954-55), which he painted after having a dream of the American flag. But this installation looks like the execution of Tartars rather than art. So, I realised that prefer his works with flag.

Beethoven House and Square

Bonn Minster Church and sculpture in front of Bonn Minster

A particular interest for me was Government Buildings and I had the luck to visit all of them: Bundestag, UN building, World Conference Center,  Deutsche Welle, and not governmental but quite famous – Post Tower, which is the headquarters of the logistic company Deutsche Post DHL. The Post Tower is a 162.5-metre, 41-storey office building in Bonn, Germany. It was designed by German-American architect Helmut Jahn and won the 2002 Silver Emporis Skyscraper Award.


I was pleasantly surprised and delighted with a huge number of solar panels and wind turbines that I saw there.It was the feeling that all power sector based on the Renewable Sources.

WP_20160330_13_02_26_ProThe love to renewables we can see even in museums, one of the examples was made by Isa Genzken, is a contemporary artist who lives and works in Berlin








In search of new adventures, I explored the cities closest to Bonn (Cologne, Koblets, Dusseldorf.  We also went to Hamburg a major port in northern Germany.Moving on Bonn-Hamburgautobahn I hoped to see some German cities, towns, buildings, but unfortunately no. But the number of windmills impressed me. It was the feeling that time to time I was in a windmill forest.

Also I was pleased with the number of electric vehicles on Germany’s streets: BMW i3, Tesla Model S, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen etc.

According to the NPE the market preparation phase has seen Germany move toward becoming a leading supplier of electric cars, with 17 vehicle models from its own domestic car makers. One of the reason for increasing number of electrovehicles is the increase of number charging stations, which are one of the big issues for electric transport (I`m not talking about new regulations on the sector).This is because they all operate on the basis of one of the two technologies. In the first case, as the power source battery used in the second – the hydrogen engine.

About Hamburg, I could write a lot, but I will mention only one of the unusual events for myself, which I have visited, this is Miss Kenya Germany 2016.

Beautiful girls introduced their culture, African music etc. The atmosphere  was so inspiring that I joined and even succeeded (to my own surprise) in a hip hop battle afterwards! 🙂

Miss Kenya Germany 2016, Hamburg: FatumaHanke and her amazing support by folk dancing Maasai


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