Transpirenaica Social Solidaria (TSS) has given 300 youths a chance to take part in its fourth edition, in which they marched nearly 800km over 42 days. One of the aims of this march is to walk across the Pyrenees to contribute to social transformation by putting youths in touch with experts, business owners from different sectors and educators, making the most of the mountain range as a representation of the effort involved, and to help their social and professional integration, opening new doors for these youths and giving them a chance to work towards their future.
Nearly 300 young people have taken part in this edition, from different associations throughout Spain. In addition to walking and sharing experiences, experts have also organised different activities, such as providing mentoring through workshops on different outlooks, responsibilities, training, communication, tips on public speaking, living together, companionship and values, as well as debate forums on topics of interest to help young people grown and learn, such as entrepreneurship, social innovation and talent promotion.
Some of their impressions
The young people taking part come from many countries, including Honduras, Bolivia, Ecuador, Mexico, Colombia, Guinea-Conakry, Guinea, Mali, Sudan, Somalia, Senegal, Cameroon, Morocco, Israel, Palestine, Russia, Pakistan, India, Taiwan, Basque Country, Aragon, Navarre, Catalonia, Andorra, Valencia, Madrid, Andalusia, Canary Islands and Galicia. Many are currently completing vocational training and advanced vocational training courses.
“This year, the second year we have taken part in this programme, we have discovered that inner strength and perseverance that sometimes we don’t know we have”, Carolina da Silva, Natalie, Maider, María, Christian and Laura, of the Llundain-Haritz Berri foundation.
“This experience has been fantastic from day one. This project has taken me completely by surprise, seeing how people who were complete strangers when this project began have become part of our lives”, Jonathan (studying a scientific baccalaureate).
“This is the first time I have taken part in TSS and, without a doubt, it has been an amazing experience, with all of us walking together for a better world. What I feel now is love, excitement and peace; these are the things I am taking away from this experience”, Marta, 23 years old, studying Nursing).
“TSS has opened my eyes and allowed me to find myself. I’m ending this experience with a desire to do more”, Lucía (20, in teacher training for primary education).
This march has given these young people an experience in which they have learned important values, such as how to surpass your own expectations, be a companion to others and be a leader. Learning and sharing experiences with people they have met along the way has also allowed them to network and improve their chances of having a better future.
At the end of the march, TSS follows up on these youths by organising monthly visits to the mountains, cultural activities and promoting awareness of the project in schools and educational centres.
According to the director of TSS, Ignasi de Juan, “young people, who are the key part of this project, are very positive about the experience and are keen to repeat it”.