News  >  Blog

Youth Creatively Engage While at Home

Published 07/10/2020 by Global Communities


Read original article on USAID website

All across Kosovo youth are finding creative ways to keep social distancing guidelines to only physical distancing.  They are maintaining connections to their peers and providing virtual support to each other to prevent feelings of isolation.  To capture and share these creative ideas, USAID’s Up to Youth activity encouraged participants to compete in an online competition sharing ways they are creatively spending their free time during the pandemic.  Youth between the ages of 15 and 24, from all nine partner municipalities, were highly involved in the competition, submitting more than 200 ideas.

The winning submissions included the use of social media for youth campaigns, as suggested by Leonora Gashi from Klinë/a, and using quiz apps to engage with family and friends, as advised by Lorik Sahiti from Viti/na and Altiana Zogaj from Istog/Istok.  Diarta Jashari from Mitrovicë e Jugut/Južna Mitrovica suggested using video-conferencing apps to organize online reading clubs, sing karaoke, and play games with friends.  She explained, “It helps you keep in touch with friends, cheer up, and keep the distance at the same time.”

While many of the contest participants suggested creative virtual ways to stay connected, one of the winners advised getting offline and making a time capsule using bottles, boxes, or jars.  Albenita Vorfi from Gjakovë/Đakovica suggested filling a time capsule with memories, such as pictures or notes and burying it in the yard or hiding it somewhere in the house.  Albenita explained, “After one or more years, open the capsule where your memories are waiting for you.  The time capsule is a remembrance, a gift from the past to the future.”

USAID’s Up to Youth activity shared the winning ideas – along with all others submitted – with all the activity’s participants.  Whether by example or encouragement, youth are more often, and more deeply, influenced by their peers.  Online competitions like these not only introduce youth to helpful ideas and positive approaches on how to feel connected without being physically together, but also help them share their feelings and experiences, reassuring each other that we are all in this together.