Democracy and participation, Social inclusion

If I Were In Your Shoes


Who is behind this?

Vitalii Zakhozhyi

AEGEE-Kyiv: European Students Forum – Assoсiation of General States of Europe – Kyiv


Who is joining forces?



Idea Sketch | Proposal


Idea pitch

Imagine you are totally another person who lives in another city of totally different country. Think outside your own paradigm. Change the perspective on the problems your society has; work together on decision plan to overcome those problems as well as the problems of another society. Does it facilitate the burst of fresh ideas, understanding, cohesion and solidarity? Put yourself in someone’s shoes to share experience, absorb new ideas and understand better the people you live nearby.

Where will your idea take place?

Kyiv, Ukraine and Berlin, Germany

Why does Europe need your idea?

Most people live in their own world with certain circumstances and certain problems and challenges. We rarely try to dive into that world to know the true story about problems of the society and the way people tackle those problems. Superficial knowledge and incomprehension create people’s indifference and unconcern.

What is your impact?

Our aim is to put young people from one country into the shoes of youth from other country by showing them the challenges the country encounters on different levels and in different areas and giving them a chance to practically participate in solving those problems. In that way young people will not only educate each other about existing problems, but also will learn from both countries experience of overcoming those problems, find the common vision and extract it by local implementing.

How do you get there?

We plan to organize a School “If I Were in Your Shoes” (5 days in Germany and 5 days in Ukraine) between German and Ukrainian youth to tight the liaison and deepen the knowledge of one country about the other with the focus on practical participation of the participants in solving the local problems of other country. That would give the chance to create the fresh view on ways to overcome problems, share different visions and exchange the experience in order to break stereotypes, cope with misunderstanding and strengthen the cohesion. For instance, Ukrainians would go to the refugees camp in Germany to teach German or to help them to socialize while Germans will come to the NGOs who deals with fighting corruption where they will create ad on that topic.

What is your story?


Who are you doing it for?

The target audience is the youth (18-26 y.o.) from Germany and Ukraine. We choose this audience because we want to empower youth to participate in democratic processes, to direct their energy and enthusiasm in the right way, to break stereotypes which young people can get from social and ordinary media with the excess of information and propaganda.

What makes your idea stand apart?

It would not be a common educational exchange between youth, we want people from other country to feel what does it mean to be in someone's shoes. Therefore, the main focus will be on practicing and direct participating - making interview in the independent media, a day of volunteering in refugee camp teaching English/German or binding camouflage net for Ukrainian solgiers who are in ATO zone on the eastern part of Ukraine, etc.

€ 30000,-

Funding requested from Advocate Europe

€ 30000,-

Total budget

Major expenses

Travel costs for visiting Kyiv and Berlin (20 participants, 6 organizers; flights for participants from other country, reimbursement of bus/train for local participants) - 14 000 EUR Accommodation (20 participants, 6 organizers) - 11 500 EUR Local transport (tickets for public transport) - 600 EUR PR - 1 000 EUR Event costs - 2 000 EUR

What do you need from the Advocate Europe community?

We would be thankful for community's feedback on our project. We are also looking for other youth organizations from other countries with which we can duplicate and organize the same project next year, because each country tackles its own problems, local communities have their own way of overcoming them, so it would be nice to continue getting to know each other better.



Idea created on March 8, 2016
Last edit on Oct. 30, 2017

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