EYP - 14th National Session
29 Sept. 2020
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This year our school thirteen of our students participated in the 14th National Session of EYP Cyprus. Some of our EYPers share their experience below. Congratulations to our delegates selected to represent EYP Cyprus in International Sessions in 2021!
- Alexia Demetriou, The English School (year 6)
- Anna Petrides, The English School (year 6)
- Feidias Psaras, The English School (year 6)
95th International Session of EYP, Nicosia 2021
- Eleni Anayiotou, The English School (year 6)
- Eleni Protopapa, The English School - Delegate from EYP Day (year 4)
Eleni Anayiotou- delegate:
I am still quite unable to comprehend how I was able to form such intimate bonds with people I met through a flat computer screen. We should admit that everyone was at least slightly disappointed when we were informed that the 14th National Session was going digital. EYP is characterised by the beautiful friendships that it helps flourish, so it was hard for us to understand how we would be able to do that through a video-call. Yet I was surprisingly impressed! The organisational skills as well as the eagerness of the people working behind the scenes to accommodate us was impossible to disregard. The General Assembly and all the Committee activities run smoothly and were both fun and challenging. I can say with confidence that I left the conference making many mental notes on how admirable the determination of the people that made it work was but also having met intelligent and caring people, that I can now call my friends!
Although the EYP national session was not what we originally anticipated as delegates and I admit entered the first zoom call with a sceptical mind, the outcome came out to be irreplaceable. The EYP spirit could still be felt whizzing through the discord servers as well as the community of support that although invisible at times was always active in making sure that the session ran smoothly. I have to say my committee REGI was absolutely fantastic and besides all the difficulties (yes I'm talking about the wifi connections) we managed to create long-lasting bonds and cooperate extremely well with each other coming up with our own resolution on a topic unfamiliar to us in only two days. As for the GA day, the exhilaration was never-ending, something I was not expecting for an online debate. By the end of it my cooperation, communication and patience skills have improved dramatically and I feel honoured to be part of the EYP Cyprus family. Overall I cherish the moments spent during the 14th national session and urge everyone to give it a chance because at the end of the day the EYP bond is one you will forever appreciate.
Alexia Demetriou- delegate:
No one can deny the initial disappointment we all felt after finding out that the 14th national session of EYP was going to take place online. However, I could’ve never predicted how many invaluable lessons this session taught me, even through a screen. From vital lessons about teamwork, compromise and how to properly articulate my ideas and opinion during committee work, to talking to and bonding with all my incredible fellow PECH delegates whilst also improving my debating skills through the General assembly; the 14th National session offered me an experience, unlike any other debate forum I had attended so far. EYP, in general, has not only enabled me to acquire new skills and truly understand what it's like to effectively work as part of a team but throughout this journey, I have also met so many incredible individuals including my wonderful fellow chairs of 2020. Overall I would encourage anyone looking to become more active within the European community, improve their teamwork skills or simply get to know more people to join the EYP family, you won't regret it trust me!
Anna Petrides- delegate:
The 14th National Session of EYP Cyprus took place under unprecedented circumstances. However, despite the mental exhaustion and sleep deprivation I experienced in the beginning, the session was an extremely fulfilling experience. EYP has been a trailblazer when it comes to adjusting to challenging circumstances. Exploring online tools and transforming online encounters to meaningful friendships was truly enriching. It wasn’t about physical distance, it was about digital closeness. Not a superficial closeness that has the digital element at its core, but one whose goal is youth empowerment and which uses the digital element as a means to achieve it. The session holds a symbolic significance; adaptability is key.
Feidias Psaras- delegate:
Starting from Year 4, EYP has been one of the most important parts of my school career. It has taught me how to connect with others and work in a team, to deal with failure and rejection, to face huge and seemingly insurmountable fears. And more than that, it has introduced me to a vast and deeply interconnected network of students, a massive community ranging across the EU. This year’s 14th National Session, which, despite the numerous difficulties, took place digitally as a four-day event I could not have dreamed of getting more out of, proves that the people that make up the EYP community are devoted to this project and its importance. This exactly is a testament to the amount of care and effort that goes into each and every one of these sessions I attend and is what inspires me to do the exact same thing moving forward, and positively reinforce future generations of students just like me.
Demi Asvesta- delegate:
Going digital was definitely a challenge, and the amount of screen time was at times overwhelming. Yet, once again our chairs and fellow organisers proved that they were there to support us, every step the way, with fun games and energisers at exactly the right times. I was amazed by how much I got to know my committee and connect with them, also through a digital form. We all grew together so much over those four days and I can’t wait to meet my team in real life.
Irene Leonidou- delegate:
The 14th National Session undoubtedly surpassed my expectations. Team building and debating online was a challenging but rewarding experience that helped me develop my communication skills and appreciate the otherwise physical nature of EYP, which I used to take for granted. Considering the unprecedented circumstances, the event ran smoothly and the contagious EYP spirit could be felt, even through a screen. From late-night Zoom, calls discussing the inevitable comeback of Crocs, to morning cooking shows and oscar-worthy performances, the National Session certainly did not disappoint.
Danae Demetriadou- delegate:
The 14th National Session was not at all what I expected. Before starting the session I went through a whirlwind of a thousand different emotions. Excitement, worry, confidence and most of all disappointment since it was unfortunately held online due to COVID-19. I never thought that I would meet so many amazing people and bond with my committee so much over a computer screen. Even though every night I went to bed exhausted from sitting down all day the experiences created and the fun I had made up for any kind of discomfort I may have felt. Yes, the event was online but Organisers, Chairs and us delegates made each other feel as if we were all together. I am proud and very happy that I am now a member of the EYP family and I am more than excited to meet all my new friends in person.
Andreas Psaltis- delegate:
As a delegate, I am very thankful to the organizing team as they have produced an extraordinary yet great virtual national session. Despite my disappointment in the beginning, surprisingly the online delivery had the right level of interaction and involvement, and this delivery method was an effective way to discuss our resolution in a more casual and comfortable environment. The best thing though was that now we had actual frappé during coffee breaks.
Antigoni Stavrou- delegate:
The 14th national session was undoubtedly an experience I will never forget. Even though I initially had some doubts about the session being digital I was pleasantly surprised by how even through our screens we were able to connect with our committees and enjoy our time together. It was inspiring to see everyone going above and beyond to make it an incredible experience. It truly was.
Emily K. Wallerstrom- organiser
Working behind the scenes to accommodate the changing needs of officials and delegates could not have been more fulfilling. The organising team had been working on the session for over 6months, and to finally materialise our vision and see happy faces on the computer screens, made this experience worthwhile. I strongly encourage EYP alumni to get a taste of the orga-life, as it is a position unlike others, where the responsibility of the session falls on you, and your creative freedom can help distinguish your session from the rest.
English School delegates in the 14th National Session:
Alexia Demetriou, Anna Petrides, Chloe Kallia, Demetra Avesta, Eleni Anayiotou, Feidias Psaras, Andreas Psaltis, Antigoni Stavrou, Danae Demetriade, Eleni Protopapa, Ioannis Skordis, Irene Leonidou, Markos Televantos
Members of the Organizing and Academic team were Chloe Tserioti, Emily K. Wallerstrom, and Emily Petrou