Faces & Voices: Coordinators

If you are or were part of the German-Cypriot Youth Exchange Program, we would be happy to receive your thoughts and comments on the program. Please contact us by email info@german-cypriot-exchange.org.

Coskun Tözen

loading...

I am personally dedicated to Cyprus and its people for biographical reasons. Cyprus and the Cyprus conflict is also my favoured academic field of interest. Back in 2007, we started the German-Cypriot Youth Exchange Programme as a tri-communal non-formal educational project. At that time, we were not sure whether we will be able to implement our conceptual vision of sustainability of the programme. Therefore, I am very glad that we could run and develop the programme with the dedication of its participants. I am looking forward for many other years of successful exchange programmes.

In my opinion, all affords of the civil society in Cyprus and the European Union, that are aiming to bring together young people, especially from regions of protracted conflict, are extremely valuable. They contribute to peace in general and to the individual development more specifically.

Such programmes are even more important in cases like Cyprus considering heavily biased selective ethno-nationalist narratives, that are still taught in the educational systems in south and north.

(contact him: coskun@german-cypriot-exchange.org)

Jule Manitz

loading...

Since I grew up in Berlin, I had an early interest in the impacts of division and unification. Therefore, I chose to spent a year abroad in Nicosia, Cyprus, as part of an ERASMUS study exchange in 2007/08.

During this time, I convinced some of my Greek Cypriot friends to explore the 'other side' of this beautiful island. I was shocked to learn that for some of them this was the first visit of the Northern part of Cyprus. This experience strengthened my belief that direct communication and appreciation of shared culture are one important basis to overcome the Cyprus conflict.

In 2011, I was happy to learn, that there was a possibility to continue this work in a professional manner within the German-Cypriot Youth Exchange Programme. For me, it is of particular value that this programme focuses on young adults as way to improve the future of Cyprus.

(contact her: jule@german-cypriot-exchange.org)

Orestis Tringides

loading...

Hello! My name is Orestis Tringides and I have been participating and trying to help in the coordination of the programme one year after it begun. We try to make this programme a participative one - this means, anyone that wishes to contribute, suggest, create can come in with suggestions and initiatives, with only a little facilitation from the coordinators (that again, the coordination task is open to anyone that wants to contribute to it!). We try to act as open and as democratically as possible and we welcome different opinions under a civilized and an on-equal basis dialogue framework! These are the reasons why I am keeping myself around in the programme (initially as one of the participants and later as one of the coordinators) with the wish to let other people take initiatives and take a leading role in shaping the programme! Coming from Cyprus, usually the discussion is monopolizing around the "Problem" (that's a word we used a million times). In reality, the youth in Cyprus have many, many other challenges to deal with and come together as team to tackle: governance, human rights, the right for everyone to have a say for his/her own future, the right to have an opinion and be heard, the ability of young people to get organised by themselves and claim their common future on this island. Enough talk: this programme is very challenging, not so easy but great fun! We first challenge ourselves by emerging into the very rich experience of it. If you want to create experiences that will shape you for a lifetime, come and I guarantee you this is exactly want you will get! The rest is up to you :).

(contact him: name @ surname.com)