Cigarette No tnx


Thesalloniki, Greece

Youth Exchange


The Youth Exchange ‘Cigarette? No thanks’, which has taken place in Thessaloniki, in the period of 15-22/07/2017, with 40 youngsters from Italy, Cyprus, Greece, Malta, Turkey and Romania, was aiming not only to spread information about the negative aspects of the smoking, but also to promote, along with the youngsters, a healthy lifestyle. Through motivating and stimulating games, group work & role play, discussions,
street actions( interviews) and presentations, each one of the participants developed their competences in encouraging other young people to quit or avoid smoking. This program, by laying emphasis to all adverse effects (medical, personal, mental and side effects), has achieved the sensitization of the youngsters.

In the period of 7 days on working with 40 participants from different cultures, each national team had to carry out a workshop, in which the members of the team were responsible for the coordination and guidance of the group. After the division of each multicultural group, a title -a subject, more specifically- was given, according to the topic of the workshop. Some of our topics were : ‘why do we start smoking?’, ‘Smoker’s profile and image’ ‘Smoking and other ‘bad habits’, Drugs, alcohol, gambling’, ‘Family’s influence’ The teams, guided by a leader, had to manage their time in order to present, in their preferable way (video, presentation, theater, dialogue etc.), their conclusion and their observations. Using this method, participants had the opportunity to improve their skills in management, be disciplined in timetables, increase their tolerance to others opinion in the terms of teamwork, invent new ways of promoting their ideas especially about the active and passive smoking, and understand in depth the negatives of the adoption of smoking. However, this project was not focusing on hating smokers but embracing the decision of quitting smoking and eliminate this harmful phenomenon along with providing European awareness.

Concerning the cooperation between teams, teambuilding activities in this project have broadened our thinking and limited our selfishness. We have learned to appreciate the interaction with people and respect their opinion. Essential part in this competence has played the innovative idea (of the coordinators- Maria Stephanidou & Markos Chionos), which suggested the presentation of another country by each national group in intercultural nights. Through this exposure to different culture, participants had the privilege to enter another world, research, learn and present. This exposure was beneficial, since it has provided us with the maturity to accept and love other countries. This competence was enhanced by the communicative barriers, which was leading participants to find a common language. This barrier was not a stumbling stone in our communication, since our activities were giving the opportunity to the youngsters to express their opinions through other methods such as theater, art etc.

‘Cigarette? No thanks’, accomplished to bring 40 youngsters together with same purpose, enhancing their awareness, which will altered their perspective in life.

Each one of us can make the change, starting from their selfs!

‘Cigarette? No thanks’