“Our SU was about obtaining clues to find the Czech Grail”
Getting to know Czech culture and traditions was the focus of the Summer University “The Legend of the Czech Grail: The Dragon’s Mystery”. AEGEE-Brno, AEGEE-Plzeň, AEGEE-Praha organized the event together from 4 to 19 July 2022.
Golden Times: What was your Summer University about?
SU Team: It was about obtaining the clues to find the Czech Grail. This theme was used already in 2018 and 2019 at SUs organized by AEGEE-Praha and AEGEE-Plzeň. This year AEGEE-Brno joined, so after many years finally all Czech antennas could organize this summer adventure together. The SU started in Prague. Then we proceeded to Plzeň, where we took part in interesting workshops and hat the European night. Afterwards we travelled to camps in South Bohemia to do rafting and moved to South Moravia, where we stayed in cities Brno and Mikulov. Even though it was a lot of packing and travelling, we still had a lot of energy to do the city tours during the day and party at night!
GT: How many participants and how many organisers did you have?
SU Team: 23 participants and around 36-40 organizers and helpers.
GT: What were the greatest thematic programme highlights of the SU?
SU Team: Many activities had added value: a sexual harassment workshop from the NGO Konsent, a workshop on Czech traditions and cultural stereotypes and regular reflection groups while the participants were divided into smaller groups and had the opportunity to discuss everyday issues and give feedback on the program and activities.
Regarding excursions and trips, we visited a brewery, had city tours, rallies and pub crawls, saw the castles Vyšehrad, Pražský hrad, Karlštejn and Lednice, visited the synagogue in Plzeň, had trips to beaches in Plzeň and Brno, did a wine cellar visit with wine tasting and had two days of rafting.
GT: What can you tell us about the rafting?
SU Team: Our international group enjoyed this popular local sport on the river Vltava for two days and everyone managed to get from point A to point B successfully, even though it was the first time for many participants and also for some organizers. This is mainly thanks to experienced organizers who explained the right technique of paddling as well as safety rules. A group of six people got a raft in which one was the main captain. There was even a possibility to swim in the calmer parts of river flow. We spent our nights in camps located by the river with other rafters. In the evening after the long day of paddling we could enjoy a campfire and sightseeing in Český Krumlov which was our final destination. Happy and full of impressions we could move to another big city – Brno.
GT: What were the most exciting moments?
SU Team: The most exciting moments were parties at various places with various topics, for example at gyms, clubs, dorms and karaoke bars; the adventure during the rafting and camping; and the cooperation during team games.
GT: How was the group of participants?
SU Team: The group of participants was well bond, cooperating and not creating any language ghetto, even though it comprised of groups of more people of the same nationality. Talking and paying attention to ever each participant and insisting on using a single language was very important. Also creating a friendly atmosphere, staying in touch via social sites not only during the SU, but also after it ended and not making differences between participants and organisers when it comes to spending time together, but at the same time maintaining mutual respect and being able to deal with problems fast and efficiently.
GT: How successful was the SU overall?
SU Team: The SU was very successful, every participant and organizer enjoyed it. The proof is the fact that we were in contact on WhatsApp not only during the event, but also after it ended – some of us spent more time together back in Prague or Brno again, also we were adding each other on social sites and already planning another adventure!