Παρασκευή, 18 Νοεμβρίου 2016

“Sketchbook Station” διαγωνισμός για εικαστικούς καλλιτέχνες


Art from heart to heart

Το “Sketchbook Station είναι ένα πρόγραμμα που αναπτύχθηκε για να συνδέσει τους εικαστικούς καλλιτέχνες από διάφορες χώρες της Ευρώπης, μέσα από ένα άλμπουμ-χάρτη που ταξιδεύει από τον έναν καλλιτέχνη στον άλλο. Στο άλμπουμ οι καλλιτέχνες κάνουν ένα σχέδιο ή ζωγραφική με την τεχνική της επιλογής τους. Μαζί με το τελικό σχέδιο/ζωγραφική του κάθε καλλιτέχνη, οι διοργανωτές στέλνουν ολόκληρο το άλμπουμ-χάρτη στον επόμενο συμμετέχοντα.


Ο χάρτης Sketchbook έχει το δικό του δημιουργικό ταξίδι που αρχίζει και τελειώνει στην Κροατία, τη χώρα ίδρυσης της Ένωσης για την προώθηση του ανθρώπινου δυναμικού και τη δημιουργική ανάπτυξη “Prizma”.
Το φινάλε του έργου είναι η έναρξη της διεθνούς έκθεσης των έργων του “Sketchbook Station”. Η έκθεση έχει προγραμματιστεί να λάβει χώρα την ερχόμενη άνοιξη σε διάφορες γκαλερί και πολυχώρους στην Κροατία.

Τρόπος συμμετοχής:
Η αίτηση και η συμμετοχή στο έργο είναι δωρεάν. Συμπληρώστε το έντυπο της αίτησης που θα βρείτε στο www.sketchbookstation.com και στείλτε το μαζί με το βιογραφικό σας στα αγγλικά και δείγμα του έργου σας (5 έως 10 έργα), με μια σύντομη περιγραφή του κάθε έργου (όλα στα αγγλικά), στο sketchbook@udrugaprizma.hr  


Επιλογή:
Η κριτική επιτροπή θα επιλέξει τους καλλιτέχνες που θα συμμετάσχουν στο έργο. Τα αποτελέσματα του διαγωνισμού θα ανακοινωθούν στην ιστοσελίδα του έργου.

Περισσότερες πληροφορίες:
info@udrugaprizma.hr και Βάσω Χαριτοπούλου (κέντρο τοπικής ανάπτυξης «Διώνη»), vasso-charitopoulou@hotmail.com


Παρασκευή, 11 Νοεμβρίου 2016

"Dione" in training seminar in Lebanon


Intercultural dialogue#Re-started”

Among the participants in the training course “Intercultural dialogue#Re-started” in Beirut, from 22 to 30 October, was Ileia’s local development centre “Dione” and its representative ms Marianna Kapelle.
The seminar was attended by youth workers from 5 European countries (Estonia, Latvia, Italy, Greece, Bulgaria) and 4 Southern Mediterranean countries (Lebanon, Jordan, Tunisia, Morocco) for intercultural dialogue and promoting diversity in the afore mentioned countries. 


Lebanon has been in an emergency situation for approximately 40 years, there is no sustainability and the refugees are reaching the one third of the population. Visiting one of the camps to engage in children’s activities as well as one of the old detention centers in the southern-most part of Lebanon, the feelings were mixed and the European participants came to understand the local reality of a continuously conflicted territory.


Additionally, there was a visit to one of the AMEL association centers, which are serving the humanitarian cause against all odds. 
In this center there was a big event focusing on the ‘intercultural dialogue’ between the ‘Re-started’ participants and migrants/refuges who regularly visit the centers of Amel receiving psychosocial/medical/educational support services.
The event was about sharing real stories from the side of the training participants who were playing the role of the ‘living book’. The visitors of this event came to read the books/stories that they were interested in and interacted with the “living books”. 

One of the many activities of this training was when each national group that was attending this seminar presented specific examples of typical hate-speech and challenges related to ‘living together in diversity’ in their respective countries. In addition to the presentation, good practices on tackling the issues were addressed in order to support building a better understanding of other people and working towards reacting on hate-speech and deconstructing violent ideologies. 


Overall, the training was based on interactive learning through activities and ‘role playing games’. There were many objectives to these activities, including: 1) understanding our own ‘out of conscious awareness’, 2) what it consists of (i.e. assumptions, perceptions, beliefs, gender roles, norms, attitudes, expectations, values, religious beliefs, through process, etc.), 3) realizing the different dimensions of diversity (identity, primary, secondary, organizational, cultural), 4) understanding the concept of inclusion/exclusion, cohesion and what stereotypes, prejudices, discrimination and oppression means, 5) how these concepts are connected, 6) how unconsciously each person acts through these concepts, and 7) how to avoid the ‘Pyramid of hate’ (life-threatening acts, acts of violence, acts of discrimination, acts of prejudice, acts of indirect prejudice, indifference). 

All activities and discussions during the ‘Re-started’ training gave each participant the opportunity to share his/her own ideas, perceptions, ideologies and to use tools to un-do specific stereotypes/prejudice/discrimination habits and accept the diverse reality of this whole world. 


It is worth mentioning that, many times trainers invited participants to write down their thoughts and their key-words of life and to share them with everyone, using these words/messages as a way to change the world, the ‘Re-started’ world. The result was amazing (see below the page that was created with photos and key-word messages from each one of the participants shot in Beirut and is dedicated to the “humans of diversity”: 

Last but not least, each national group devoted themselves, as youth workers, to spread the word of ‘no-hate speech’ and ‘promote diversity’ through projects in the respective countries. 

The training course was coordinated by Nooruse Maja (Estonia) and hosted by Amel Association International (Lebanon). 
The project was funded by the Erasmus+ Program of the European Union.

Vaso Charitopoulou (Founder & Head of the local development centre “Dione”, Ancient Olympia), in collaboration with Marianna Kapelle (expert in International Affairs & International Organizations, currently Protection Officer/“Community Engagement” in OXFAM)

Πέμπτη, 3 Νοεμβρίου 2016

The Sacred Silence of Pholoe


A Quercus frainetto forest in Greece under threat: 
our article, published by the International Oak Society

Close to the birthplace of the Olympic Games and to the roots of the ancient world and the beginning of mythology, the oak forest of Pholoe (Foloi) is a vibrant eternal monument of the beauty of nature and the sparkling inspirations that created human civilization.
The Pholoe oak forest is located in southwestern Greece, in a plateau area at an altitude of about 600 m. It is an ecosystem that is unique in Europe as it is a high forest of even-aged oaks (oaks are usually coppiced). In the area there is significant landscape and species diversity, including oak and pine forest, maquis, small fields, and olive groves. The forest has been designated a protected area as part of the EU’s Natura 2000 ecological network (under both the Habitats Directive and the Birds Directive) with the name Oropedio Folois, and covers 9,742 ha.


The ecosystem of the oak forest provides habitat to many raptor species (Aquila chrysaetos, Circaetus gallicus,Falco eleonorae, F. peregrinus, Accipiter nisus, Pernis apivorus), woodpeckers (Dendrocopos leucotos), mammals (Canis aureus, Lutra lutra), and reptiles (Elaphe quatuorlineata).
Tree species in the ecosystem include the deciduous oaks Quercus frainetto (syn. Q. conferta) and Q. pubescens, as well as the evergreen oaks Q. ilex and Q. coccifera. Other tree species are Castanea sativa,Cercis siliquastrum, Arbutus unedo, Erica arborea, Pistacia lentiscus, Pinus halepensis, and P. nigra. Ferns, asphodels, and many herb species can also be found in the area.

The broadleaf oak Q. frainetto is the primary species of oak in the forest. The Pholoe forest is at the southernmost limit of the species’ native distribution in the Balkan Peninsula. Paleoecological findings suggest that the species was present in the Peloponnese over 6,000 years ago. The trees are 15–20 m tall and can live up to 200 years (Mauri et al. 2016). Q. frainetto is found with Pinus halepensis, while at the edge of the forest it is found with evergreen broad-leaved species, which make up the understory. Cultivated land covers areas around the villages, but it is also found inside the oak forest, originating from fires, transgression, and tree-felling (NATURA 2000 - Standard Data Form). 



The forest is located in public lands and it is managed by the Forest District of Pyrgos. Until 2002 the forest produced about 550 m3 of timber and 2,500 m3 of firewood; since 2003 wood production has been restricted due to the logging prohibitions. The forest is also used for leisure activities, hunting, grazing, coal production, forest compost, apiculture, and collection of aromatic and ornamental plants.
The natural range of forest has been reduced as a result of human pressure by encroachment and the transformation of forest (particularly the more fertile sites) to farmland. Illegal logging, grazing, wildfires, and the decrease of natural regeneration are also serious problems for forest conservation. The parasitic plant species Loranthus europaeus has also been found in the forest (NATURA 2000 - Standard Data Form).
The Forest District of Pyrgos tries to provide protection and increase public awareness; however there are serious weaknesses in policy, administration, and investments in forestry. It is also surprising that scientific literature for the Pholoe forest is practically non-existent and the number of studies is limited.   

Mythology and recent history
The mysterious beauty of the Pholoe oak forest led the ancient Greeks to believe that it was a habitat for centaurs and fairies, known as nymphs and dryads (oak fairies). It took its name from Pholos, chief of the Centaurs, whose name meant “wise, enlightened teacher.”
Heracles (Hercules), who embodies the Greek concept ofpathos (the experience of virtuous struggle and suffering that would lead to fame and immortality), performed, with the help of Hermes and Athena, two of his 12 Labors in Pholoe: the Erymanthian Boar and the Augean Stables.


Heracles’ struggles transmit through the centuries those universal values that were deeply rooted in Pholoe, and serve as an anthem to friendship, solidarity, cohesion, spirituality, intelligence, and sustainability.
Praised by Homer and Pausanias, governed by the powerful Olympian gods, surrounded by the sacred Arcadian mountains of Erymanthos and Lykaion, crossed by the divine rivers Enipeas, Erymanthos and Selinountas, and
bound to the glory of ancient Olympia and the mysteries of ancient Arcadia, Pholoe is a living monument to Greek mythology, which has played an important role in the development of Western civilization.
  
Why is then Pholoe forgotten by time and human consciousness? Why did the oak forest of Pholoe never become a benchmark for the cultural, ecological, and sporting life of the modern world?
Nearly abandoned and forgotten, Pholoe nowadays lies helpless in the hands of human beings motivated by greed who strive to kill it day by day.

The Oak Forest Museum project
This disaster will soon materialize, unless we manage to bring back sacredness and respect to the wounded oak forest.
Creating an Oak Forest Museum at the foot of the Pholoe’s hills would help preserve and protect Pholoe and create international appreciation of the oak forest.



Our proposal is to create an interactive, digital thematic park with information kiosks, touchscreens, and modern educative tools that would recount the mythology and interpret its symbols. We believe a museum of these characteristics could effectively encourage sustainable development, and this may be a way to resolve the current economic, moral, and social crisis.
Human beings are bound to the ecosystems they occupy and human history to the mythologies of its past. Understanding the importance of these relationships could rally more courageous and focused support for this and other such projects. The question is, how decided are we to think outside the circle of our illusions to find the solutions we need?


Vaso Charitopoulou
Economist
Founder and Head of “Dione” Local Development Centre, Ancient Olympia, Elis (vasso-charitopoulou@hotmail.com)
Dr Christos Sokos
Forester-Wildlife Ecologist (sokos@vet.uth.gr)

Sources:
Mauri, A., Enescu, C. M., Houston Durrant, T., de Rigo, D., Caudullo, G., 2016. “Quercus frainetto in Europe: distribution, habitat, usage and threats” in: San-Miguel-Ayanz, J., de Rigo, D., Caudullo, G., Houston Durrant, T., Mauri, A. (Eds.), European Atlas of Forest Tree Species. Publ. Off. EU, Luxembourg, pp. 150-151