Is Europe in Viborg – or is Viborg in Europe? A good question from students at the Viborg International School at the European Cooperation Day as five local EU programme staff visited to introduce European collaboration through presentations, videos, talks and a EURO game.
Five local staff from the EU North Sea Region Programme and the EU Interact Denmark office dedicated part of the day to unfolding and showcasing to pupils aged 10 to 16 how Viborg and Central Denmark Region connect to the EU and how present Europe is – both in our own ancestry and upbringing, in Viborg as a city, and in the students’ everyday life (and vice versa).
The children aged 10-11 years formed the audience at the first presentation. Like the EU guests, they were quite an international group and open to know much more about the EU. They played a EURO game trying to identify different coins and talked about many topics, from bacon export to personal language skills and dreams of studying abroad later in life.
One to raise EU awareness at the Viborg International School September 21st was the Greek/Japanese senior expert from Interact Monica Tanaka – a true EU citizen. She has studied in the UK and the Netherlands and has been working within the EU since 2000 – with Interreg in the UK and then in France, with the European Commission in Brussels and since last year with the Interact Programme at the Viborg office in Denmark.
“When I was growing up in Greece, nobody taught us or exemplified the meaning or effects of the EU – nobody gave EU a face so to speak. I wish somebody had, and that is my motivation for celebrating the European Cooperation Day this year with local students here in Viborg. They might not know how present the EU is in the town and that not all administration has to be located in the capitals,” says Monica Tanaka who planned the event with two other Interact colleagues Linda Ring and Guillaume Terrien and two colleagues from the North Sea Region Programme, Isabella Leong and Jenny Thomsen.
On this day, they managed to leave the true European Cooperation Day impression with the pupils in Viborg – that we are sharing borders, growing closer.
Guest blogger Lene Christensen is a journalist employed by Central Denmark Region.