Empowering Summer Camp Youth Leaders (ESYL for short) is a short training course, hosted by YMCA Nederland, to strengthen the YMCA summer camp work in Europe. The training course takes place from 20 – 24 of May, and is located on one of the national camp sites of YMCA Nederland in Leusden, in the middle of The Netherlands.

There are 2 goals for the training

First of all there is the goal to strengthen the YMCA summer camp work in Europe, by sharing knowledge with each other, learning new ideas, methods and games from each other.

The second goal is to see if we can start to make some sort of ‘standard’ for European summer camps from the YMCA and related organizations (for example Don Bosco). Making a standard means that we start making a rough guideline what you offer as YMCA when you organize summer camps, what it is to make sure you offer quality that fits within the YMCA, and what you need to reach that quality.

Some of the countries involved in this project have been organizing summer camps for quite a long time, and there are also countries who have just (re)started with summer camping with their organization.

Number of places for the training (this is including the group leader)
The Netherlands YMCA 6
Romania 5
Macedonia 5
The Netherlands Don Bosco Rijswijk 5
Sweden 4
Finland 5
Italy 5
France 4

Who can participate?

The training course is for volunteers and/or youth workers who organize summer camps, or want to learn how to organize summer camps. The age of the participants should be between 17 and 30. For the development of the participant and for the YMCA standard for summer camping, it is important that the volunteers who participate have the possibility to be a leader at a summer camps this summer, so they can use the knowledge we share and teach during the training!

If you have years and years of experience as a summer camp leader, it might be wise to come as a trainer otherwise you might already know a lot of what we will teach during the program. You can contact the Dutch contact person for further details about being a trainer.

What does the program look like?

The program will be full of knowledge about how to organize summer camps, how to work with youth, to be a good youth leader, group work, and of course games! You can check the timeline  for the program in concept. If you have suggestions for us, please let us know.

When does the training start?

The training starts on the 20th of May. Arrival on the 20th is possible till 15.00. If you are later, please let us know. The trainers will arrive on the 19th of May. It is important for the trainers to arrive one day earlier than the participants so we can prepare the training program. The training will end on the 24th of May, we need to clear the campsite before 12.00.

If you want to enjoy The Netherlands before or after the training, you are welcome to do that, but you cannot come earlier or stay at the campsite, as it is booked for other groups. The training will end on Sunday 12.00 it is not possible to leave earlier.

Where does the training take place?

The training takes place on the YMCA Campsite of the Dutch YMCA. The campsite can host up to 300 people at the same time, divided into 9 different groups. The training group will be 1 of the groups that will be at the campsite during the training.

The campsite is located in the middle of the woods, and during spring and autumn is used by many different groups who want to organizes camps. During summertime the YMCA organizes their own summer camps there.

Although it is a big terrain, it is still a simple accommodation. There is a big kitchen and central building, where the staff works and prepares the dinners, but the campsites itself consist of tents. So group leaders and participants will sleep in tents, so you need to take a sleeping bag with you. In  There are mattresses at the campsite, so you do not need to bring one of those.

The address of the campsite is: Paradijsweg 4, Leusden.

For more pictures: http://www.ymcakampeercentra.nl/foto-s

Travel & reimbursement

You will need to travel to train station of Amersfoort, a city in the middle of The Netherlands, on your own. Amersfoort is easy to reach by a direct train from Amsterdam and from the Schiphol Airport. If you fly to Eindhoven or Rotterdam, you’ll might need to change train in Utrecht.

In Amersfoort we will pick you up with a minivan, as the campsite is a bit hard to reach, as it is in the middle of the woods.

The maximum amount you can get reimbursed for travel costs is 275 euros (except for the Dutch people). This is including the train ticket to Amersfoort, and travel costs in your own country. Any costs about 275 euros are for the participants who makes them.

Your organisation will need to provide an invoice and financial documents to receive the reimbursement. The reimbursement will be done by bank account.

Please make sure that you read and understand the conditions and the procedure.

Save your original tickets and receipts, invoices and all related documents, because you can only get reimbursement for costs of which you can prove the amounts with original tickets and receipts. Only the amount written on the ticket will be reimbursed – that is, if you want your return ticket to be reimbursed, you have to give it to us. ALL the following ORIGINAL documents will be needed:

– All your tickets and boarding passes

– Invoices of buying your tickets

Application and infoletter

In the attachment you will find the info letter of ESYL.

Participants can fill in the online application form: https://ymca.nl/application-form-esyl/  till 31st March 2020.

All Romanian delegation needs the endorsement of the National General Secretary of YMCA Romania.

 timetable ESYL 2020(1)

infoletter ESYL 2020(1)

What other countries are participating, and who are the contact persons?

There are 9 countries participating in this project. You can find the list of the countries below, as well as their contact person.

Country Organisation Name Email
The Netherlands YMCA Nederland Rosanne Verhoeven rosanne@ymca.nl
Joost Vlasblom joost@ymca.nl
Don Bosco Rijswijk Marlies Cuppen Marlies@donboscorijswijk.nl
Romania YMCA Romania Federation Alina Pop alina.ymca@gmail.com
Macedonia Youth Association YMCA Bitola Viktor Iliev viktor@ymcabitola.org.mk
Jovche Kretski edensvet@yahoo.com
Italy YMCA Italy Paola Petracchi ymcaitalia.petracchi@gmail.com
Finland YMCA Finland Juha Virtanen juha.virtanen@ymca.fi
Jami Lehtonen jami.lehtonen@ymca.fi
Sweden KFUM Umeå Pernilla Holmberg pernilla.holmberg@kfum.nu
Czech Republic EUROPEAN ALLIANCE OF YMCAS Adam Rychlik adam@ymcaeurope.com
Portugal ACM/YMCA DE SETUBAL Joao Moura joao.moura@ymcasetubal.org
France YMCA France Cedric Graser c.graser@ymca.fr

 The project is co-funded by European Union through Erasmus Plus Program.