START A PETITION 25,136,189 members: the world's largest community for good
START A PETITION
x

Global Change from the Mountains of Kosovo

Global Change from the Mountains of Kosovo
  • 1 of 3

NOTE: This is a guest post by Scott Shigeoka, Partnership Director at One World Youth Project.

IT RESEMBLES A BOB ROSS PAINTING: two towering mountain ranges form a valley, each with sheer cliffs of slate that look like waterfalls flowing between masses of pine trees. The valley is split by a dirt road; the only one for miles. Occasionally, a shepherd ventures onto the path and leads a large flock of sheep toward a nearby spring, which is the main source of water for most who live in the area. The Kosovar locals call this place Rugova Valley — it is beautiful.

Twelve university students stand in a circle, shoulder-to-shoulder, atop a deck overlooking the dirt road.

The students are from Turkey, Pakistan, Guyana, the U.S., and two are local to Kosovo. Each has a different story to share: some lived through war and others have never left their home country before. What they all share, though, is a deep passion to create a more just world. They will spend the next week together in northwestern Kosovo gaining the skills and knowledge needed to implement a yearlong cross-cultural exchange program in their local communities.

One by one, the students pass a lit candle around the circle; it’s nighttime in a rural area, so the light pollution is low enough for a brilliantly bright flame. Each student says a goal or dream they have for the upcoming week before passing the candle to the next person.

One of them says they “want to build a global network of lifelong friendships” because she has never met anyone from another country before. Another says his goal is “to learn enough to effectively implement the program.”

The last to hold the candle is Cady, the organization’s Program Director who leads trainings for the university participants. She smiles softly at everyone in the circle and tells the group to lean in as close to the flame as possible.

Cady raises the candle slightly and our eyes follow the movement. She tells the group, “We’re about to blow out the flame together, letting the smoke represent our goals and dreams that we just shared. We’ll allow our goals and dreams to float around us as we take it all in.”

She counts to three and everyone blows out the flame together. Whoosh. The smoke rises from the burnt wick and gently wafts around us. A few people close their eyes as they take the moment in, but I keep my eyes open and watch the goals and dreams drift ever so slightly up into the air toward the jungle of stars above us.

  • 1 of 3

Read more: , , ,

Photo credit: One World Youth Project. Members of the One World Youth Project Summer Training Conference in Kosovo.

have you shared this story yet?

some of the best people we know are doing it

37 comments

+ add your own
5:05PM PDT on May 1, 2013

OK.

4:49AM PST on Feb 9, 2013

Thank you for article.

6:13AM PST on Nov 6, 2012

EARTH CRY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jppmMcjgWS0

"The Earth is not only an environment. "She" is "Us". Her trees are our lungs, and her waterways are our circulatory system. Her cry reflects the cry of our own species as we disrespect, destroy and exploit one another. "We" are the generation that has perpetuated the practices that have created the deterioration of our Holy Mother Earth, and we stand accused. In this song, the voices of our children plead and demand for restoration of the planet. There is only one force that is capable of achieving what they now ask of us..."

QUOTED from the above sie

6:27AM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

good work

11:24AM PDT on Aug 13, 2012

beautiful

11:10AM PDT on Aug 9, 2012

"The country is very young and has just started to emerge from the shadows of oppression for decades. if anyone including Jan G can defend the outrages of Serbs in the area, then there is some serious lack of humanity."
What oppression are you talking about , Moslem ? Kosovo was an autonomous province within Yugoslavia with Albanian as the official language next to Serbo-Croatian , with Albanian schools, Albanian university and even Albanian police. What else did the Albanian Moslems want?The shariah and destruction of anything non-Moslem and non-Albanian, for sure! They tried it in 1981 in the course of the Albanian intifada. But failed.They only got it after the US war of aggression against Serbia in 1999 which was started with a big lie of "genocide" and with criminal NATO bombings and ended in an even bigger lie and a much bigger crime than what it was supposed to combat.

11:09AM PDT on Aug 9, 2012

"The country is very young and has just started to emerge from the shadows of oppression for decades. if anyone including Jan G can defend the outrages of Serbs in the area, then there is some serious lack of humanity."
What oppression are you talking about , Moslem ? Kosovo was an autonomous province within Yugoslavia with Albanian as the official language next to Serbo-Croatian , with Albanian schools, Albanian university and even Albanian police. What else did the Albanian Moslems want?The shariah and destruction of anything non-Moslem and non-Albanian, for sure! They tried it in 1981 in the course of the Albanian intifada. But failed.They only got it after the US war of aggression against Serbia in 1999 which was started with a big lie of "genocide" and with criminal NATO bombings and ended in an even bigger lie and a much bigger crime than what it was supposed to combat.

10:46AM PDT on Aug 9, 2012

AbduzAziz ,
"They are the majority population in area where the Serbs were planning and carried out the genocides - although not the same scale as Serbanitsa etc. The plans were there and would have been carried out had it not been that the world was not prepared to see the same repeated in Kossovo."
First, the Albanians became the majority in Kosovo the same way the Croats are became majority in Kraina by terrorizing, killing and expelling the Serbs whose very statehood , Orthodox Christianity and tragic history all revolve around Kosovo. And as to plans , let's take a look at them if you have any and compare them to the Albanians' jihadist plans and their implementation since 1999. It is them that committed genocide and not the Serbs. The same people that between 1941-1945 were killing and exterminating the Serbs as Albanian SS-units have now done the same thing as NATO terror groups or the UCK - an organization classified as terrorist by the State Department until February 1998 !

10:38AM PDT on Aug 9, 2012

an G: seems to have secretive agenda against Kosovans --- don't know why?
Unlike you, Moslem, I am not very fond of gangster narco-states founded by organizations which which were listed before 1999 as purely terrorist groups by the US , with ample record of destroying churches or changing them into mosques under the watchful NATO eyes, with jihadist identity and economy built upon crime. In short my "secretive" agenda coincides with that of Europol's reports on Kosovo. You should read some as they are very revealing even for a Moslem hominid like you. The notorious and malicious prosecutor of Milosevic Carla del Ponte had to admit herself that she had known as early as 1998/9 the Kosovo Albanians were capturing Serbs to cut off their organs for sale in the West but because of political pressure she had to suppress the information.

10:27AM PDT on Aug 9, 2012

Abdul Aziz Z. "Jan G: seems to have secretive agenda against Kosovans --- don't know why?" Unlike you, Moslem, I am not very fond of gangster narco-states with jihadist and terrorist identity, American support and horrifying record of destroying churches or changing them into mosques and building its economy on crime. In short my secretive agenda coincides with the agenda of Europol's reports on Kosovo. Try to read some ! They are very revealing and factual. Even the notorious prosecutor of Milosevic Carla del Ponte had to confess that she had known perfectly well that Kosovo Albanians' were involved in torturing Serbs and cutting out organs from their bodies for sale in the West.Yet for political reasons she was not allowed to tell the truth!

They are the majority population in area where the Serbs were planning and carried out the genocides - although not the same scale as Serbanitsa etc. The plans were there and would have been carried out had it not been that the world was not prepared to see the same repeated in Kossovo.

The country is very young and has just started to emerge from the shadows of oppression for decades. if anyone including Jan G can defend the outrages of Serbs in the area, then there is some serious lack of humanity.

I wish the people the best and I am not fond of Saudis and their mentality either as they are also illegitimate rulers over a patch of land containing oil, so precious to the West.

add your comment



Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

Recent Comments from Causes

There are some issues with the nearing 100 percent which have been stated. BUT, all of this country should…

How about an automatic 9mm rifle for the guard? I he is a good shot he can get rid of all of the problem…

Its too bad this woman can't love her son enough to see that her son loved this man and wanted him to…

meet our writers

Colleen H. Colleen H. is an Online Campaigner with Care2 and a recent transplant to San Francisco from the East... more
Story idea? Want to blog? Contact the editors!
ads keep care2 free

more from causes




Select names from your address book   |   Help
   

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.