ARSP organizes 20 - 25 summer camps each year. At these camps people aged 16 to 99 live and work together. They talk about the history of the work site and the current situation in the country.
© ASF/Archiv: Buchenwald 2021
Painting, gardening, building, conducting research in archives are just some of the activities that take place in the summer camps. The kind of work you do depends on the project. You will be part of an international team. Whether you have work experience or not – we believe everyone can do important work in the project. Trained skills are not the most important factor. More important is that there is a willingness to achieve a project together. By working together and trying to do good for others, the participants show that international understanding is both possible and important. The participants take responsibility for current societal developments and set an example for tolerance and democracy.
On the trail of history
Education and travelling belong together. Summer camps not only offer the chance to volunteer. They also provide an opportunity for the participants to learn about other countries and their cultures. Focusing on the location and country of the summer camp is therefore part of each ARSP project. Some of the questions discussed include: What happened here? Who influenced this place? And what significance does it have for me and for others today? Each camp represents a special concern, which the participants deal with by engaging in practical work. This content-related work is the second main pillar of the camps and offers much variety: excursions, exhibitions, conversations with survivors, workshops involving music, pictures or poems, and much more. It’s about tracing the history of the here and now and that makes engaging in an educational tour worthwhile.
Understanding requires a personal exchange
Summer camps are short term voluntary service. Having people work in our projects is not our only goal. We want to offer the chance for people with different cultural, ideological and social backgrounds to meet each other. During discussions you experience diversity. This wealth of perspectives resists the temptation people feel to think about each other in narrow-minded categories. We are identified, connected and distinguished by much more. Working this out, rectifying prejudices and dismantling fears are part of the adventure we invite you to join.