TGS On Line Newsletter 02/2021

Prosegue oggi la serie di post in lingua inglese espressamente dedicati agli amici TGS Eurogroup oltre i confini nazionali. Attraverso la mailing list dedicata “Friends of TGS Eurogroup” raggiungeremo tutti i nostri amici, collaboratori, volontari che operano assieme a TGS Eurogroup in Gran Bretagna, in Belgio e in tutta Europa, con i giovani e per i giovani, attraverso molteplici progetti internazionali che ci vedono protagonisti assieme.
La “TGS On Line Newsletter” è una versione più agile e informale della “TGS newsletter” in formato PDF che pubblichiamo solitamente due volte all’anno in lingua inglese per gli stessi destinatari. Questa versione digitale ci consente, in particolare in questo periodo in cui siamo costretti a rinunciare ai nostri viaggi studio all’estero, di tenere i contatti con tutti i nostri amici oltre confine e di tenerli aggiornati su quanto sta realizzando TGS Eurogroup in Italia.
Per tutti i nostri amici italiani può essere un ottimo esercizio di “reading comprehension” in lingua inglese… in preparazione dei prossimi corsi di lingua inglese TGS Eurogroup!
PS ti sei perso la prima puntata? Puoi leggerla on line a questa pagina: “TGS On Line Newsletter 01/2021”.
Buona lettura!

TGS Summer Camp 2021: introducing all study visits to Venice!

As promised in our previous TGS Newsletter, we are back! Back with the latest news from TGS Summer 2021.

For the second year in a row, we offered a TGS Summer Camp experience at our headquarters in Mogliano Veneto, from 3rd to 17th July. Those of you who were in our mailing list last year already had the chance to take a bite of this residential course of English language. It is as a study visit in miniature, based on the longer TGS experience in England and it lasts one week. English classes in the morning held by a mother tongue English teacher in collaboration with supportive teachers from TGS staff and volunteers; in addition to that, workshop sessions, trips and visits in the afternoon. Although the general structure of the week was tailored on the UK experience, the second edition of our Summer Camp allowed us to offer an even richer range of study visits in Venice, oriented to raise awareness in sustainability, institutions and citizenship. Let’s see in detail how these aims are developed for each of our two Summer Camp groups, by simply browsing through the “diary pages” as published daily in our blog TGS Journal all through the TGS Summer Camp experience.

Tuesday 6th July. After the morning classes in Mogliano Veneto, TGS leaders guide the students to Venice. Walking an unconventional route to avoid the crowds and get to know the most secret corners of Venice, the group reaches the Rialto Bridge. We cross the Grand Canal to find Ca’ Farsetti, Venice Town Hall, in front of us. The Councilor for Educational Policies of Venice, Ms. Laura Besio, is waiting for us. Her greeting is the official welcome by the municipal administration to the students of the TGS Summer Camp. Ms. Besio explains how demanding it is to support educational activities in Venice, a very special city where even attending primary school on a small island on the lagoon can be a great challenge. Later, we move to the Doge’s Palace, in Piazza San Marco. For many centuries the centre of the political life of Venice, it is now a museum. Our guides Roberta and Alessandra welcome us and hand out workbooks for all students to support them in their visit and introduce them to workshop activities. We are exposed to the art and history of the Palace: it is an interactive visit and includes games, clues to be discovered, stories and myths. After diving into art and history, it is time for a break. Nothing better than a visit to the nearby Royal Gardens. Thanks to a careful restoration, the gardens are now back to their former glory.

“It was my first ever visit to the Doge’s Palace and I was thrilled. Were it for me, I would have stayed there much longer”, one of the students reported at the end of the day.

Friday 9th July. For the first TGS Summer Camp group, Friday is the day of yet another long-awaited study visit to Venice. The Municipality of Venice is providing waterbus tickets to the Island of San Giorgio Maggiore. This place is special to TGS. First because of the Palladian facade of the Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore, which our patron Saint Giovanni Bosco used as a model for building the Basilica of Mary Help of Christians in Turin Valdocco, mother house of the Salesians, at the end of the XIX century. Second, because our Association had its headquarters on this Island for a few years, in the first half of the 1990s. Third, it was right on this island in the lagoon that in 1993 the Association celebrated its 25th Anniversary. Here, we visit the Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore, one of the masterpieces by Andrea Palladio. It was built in the XVI century and embellished with precious works of art by famous artists as Jacopo and Domenico Tintoretto, Palma il Giovane, Vittore Carpaccio to name a few. Eleonora, our guide, walks through the monumental complex of the Island of San Giorgio, paying special attention to the Giorgio Cini Foundation, which has created a cultural centre internationally renowned here. We are offered a trip through art, architecture and nature.

A couple of students thus commented at the end of the day: “Great selection of places to visit! The leaders made an excellent job. They worked hard and kept us busy all day”.

Tuesday 13th July. The second group of students has just settled in Mogliano and there it comes the time for their first study visit to Venice. We arrive at Venice train station, and here we start our first orienteering session. The leaders hand out the “Su and Zo per I Ponti” Maps and together we develop the route to the Rialto Bridge and the Venice Town Hall, Ca’ Farsetti. Today, we are welcomed by the Councilor for the Promotion of the Territory of the City of Venice, Ms. Paola Mar. Again, it is the official welcome given by the administration to the TGS Summer Camp students. The Councilor encourages the students to be passionate about active citizenship, to respect the city and the environment, to care for civic society. She talks about the experience of the #EnjoyRespectVenezia awareness campaign for sustainable tourism, which TGS Eurogroup also embraced through the “Su e Zo per i Ponti” solidarity walk in Venice and several other activities. These are Ms. Mar’s words in the press release of the Municipality of Venice: “We welcome all TGS Summer Camp students … I wanted to explain the position of the city administration regarding sustainability, with special attention to the brand new project Venice World Capital of Sustainability. I wanted to describe what this administration is doing and what measures are taken to look to a more sustainable future: electric buses at the Lido, water buses provided with electric engines, and the first hydrogen refueling station”.  Ms. Mar also addresses the group as likely-to-be university students in Venice. As a Councilor for the University as well, she explains how Venice would like to welcome them as future students, giving them the chance to find a job and move to the city. The Councilor was grateful for being given the possibility of bringing young people to approach politics. She is sure that, by doing so, students will realize that adults are not that far from them. Similarly, administrations can deal with their ideas and their way of thinking. It is time for us to thank Ms. Mar and get ready for our next institutional appointment: the meeting with the Council of Europe office right in Piazza San Marco. The Venice Office supports the main headquarters in Strasbourg by organising a number of activities ranging from culture to cultural heritage, from human rights training to democracy. Director Ms. Luisella Pavan-Woolfe explains to us that Italy is one of the founding members of the Council of Europe and Venice is a cultural centre recognized throughout the world. It is a crossroads of trade and civilization, one of the most visited cities in the world, a meeting point for peoples, countries and traditions. An important academic centre, it hosts three universities, several international foundations and research centres. Venice adheres to the network of Intercultural Cities of the Council of Europe, helping cities to examine their policies through an intercultural lens and to develop comprehensive strategies for managing diversity in a positive way.

From the students’ feedback: “I really enjoyed my visit to the Council of Europe, it is not a slight chance”; “Sustainable tourism … what an interesting discovery for me during my Summer Camp!”.

Thursday 15 July 2021. The second half-day study visit to Venice for the second group of students. It is a sunny and slightly veiled day. The temperature is pleasant: the perfect weather for a trip to Venice! We reach Venice train station and walk to Piazzale Roma crossing the new Constitution Bridge. We are now proud to say that we have now crossed all four bridges built over the Grand Canal through the centuries: the Scalzi Bridge, the Rialto Bridge, the Accademia Bridge, and the most recent Constitution Bridge. We take the waterbus and reach the Island of San Giorgio Maggiore! From here the view is amazing and offers a panorama on the entire San Marco Basin.

After visiting the Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore by Andrea Palladio, we are led to discover the monumental complex of the Island of San Giorgio, magnificently restored and reopened by the Giorgio Cini Foundation. We are offer a tour through art, architecture and nature. We walk between the Palladian and Buora cloisters, passing next to the Longhena’s grand staircase up to the Palladian refectory with a facsimile of the “Wedding at Cana” by Paolo Veronese, the original of which was taken by Napoleon to the Louvre Museum in Paris in the early 1800s. But what excites our children most is the Borges Labyrinth, recently opened to the public. It is a one kilometer long route maze, with more than 3000 boxus bushes arranged according to the original Randoll Coate’s design and inspired by Jorge Luis Borges’s narration “The garden of forking paths”. After finding our way out of the maze, we indulge in an ice cream at the Zattere. From here we head to the Papadopoli Gardens and have our packed lunch (actually, dinner version!).

“I had a great time and I had the chance to visit places in Venice I had never been to before. Really hope we will go back there all together again!” one of the students said on the report form.

Thank you for getting through this newsletter till the very end. We hope you enjoyed our fresh Summer news. Get ready for more TGS news in a little while!

Alessandra & TGS Journal staff

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