About the Project
In a globally connected world, all young people should have the opportunity to gain international experience. In Germany, however, most exchange programs are offered only to high-school students in the college-prep track. The “wir weit weg” (literally “we far away”) project organizes international youth exchanges for students from Saxony who are not planning to go to college. It is an innovative example of a successful collaboration between institutions of formal and non-formal education as well as a way to give a previously neglected group of young people access to international exchange programs. Over the course of 18 months, the young participants are supported by two volunteer coaches. In weekly meetings, they jointly develop and organize their own international exchange. The project was initiated by Kindervereinigung Leipzig e.V., a non-profit children’s association, and is realized with funds from the Innovation Fund of the Federal Ministry of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth. Since 2018, the Robert Bosch Stiftung has supported the consolidation and further advancement of the project.