Interesting weeks ahead for the BEECH POWER project. The German-Croatian youth exchange “Beech Academy” with a total of 28 students, between the age of 12 and 14 from Angermünde and Starigrad-Paklenica will soon take place after several postponements due to the pandemic. The German and Croatian students will focus on learning about the UNESCO World Heritage Site “Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe”. Both cities, Angermünde and Starigrad-Paklenica, are World Heritage Beech Forest communities, as three of the 94 component parts of the serial transnational World Heritage Site are located within their municipality: The Grumsin Beech Forest in Angermünde and two beech forests inside Paklenica National Park (Suva draga-Klimenta and Oglavinovac-Javornik) in Starigrad-Paklenica.
From Monday, 27th September to Saturday, 2nd of October, a group of Croatian students will join the students of Angermünde to learn everything about the Grumsin Beech Forest. Following, between 25th and 29th October German students will pay a visit to Starigrad-Paklenica and have a chance to experience the Croatian World Heritage component parts.
The students are pioneers in the extraordinary history of this unique European World Heritage site, as it is the first time that it provides the setting for this kind of international exchange between young people, supported by the protected areas and two Beech Forest communities.
This exchange is thematically embedded in the wider topic of UNESCO World Heritage Beech Forests and their importance for mankind. In addition, we are happy to provide the young people with an international experience, where they get to know people with different cultural backgrounds, develop interest in new languages and experience a positive approach to diversity. The student exchange is part of a twinning partnership that BEECH POWER is striving for between the two World Heritage Beech Forest communities involved. Within this partnership, the youth exchange is planned to take place on a regular basis.
We hope that the idea and the concept can be implemented between further countries, facilitated by respective Beech Forest communities and protected areas that are part of the World Heritage beech forest family, to bring further life into this European World Heritage site!