stories of the Y-top gatherings 

Me-dia and Innernet? Inner Communication! (day 4)

Within the realms of Natural Human Communication (the theme of this Y-TOP Gathering), there are many areas to be explored. We are automatically practicing all kinds of communication just by being here, being together and alone, and in nature. But, in order to grasp this theme as deep and fully as possible, there is a need to break it down into steps. After all, how can we be able to communicate with the world or even with people closely surrounding us, when we don’t know how to communicate with and within ourselves properly? Firstly, the day was opened with a Y-TOP tradition: a Song of the Day. Afterwards, throughout the day, we did many activities that focused on the first (out of three) to

Nature, Human and Communication in the Portuguese mountains (day 3)

Waking up at 6:00 to the fresh air of Serra da Estrela was a special feeling, and we were excited to start the hiking day. Coming from different countries with diverse landscapes, walking down and up the rocky mountain was a new experience for some of us, that demanded the best of our efforts. The first stop we made was dedicated for stretching and tuning in, and later we reached a lake where we enjoyed the cold water. It took us a while to reach the end of the trail, but group by group, all with different rhythms, we finished the walk and accomplished this mission. Tired but pleased. It is often during challenging times, for some more than others, that special friendships seem to be created

Day of Settlement and Importances (day 2)

We have arrived, but have we truly arrived? What does it even mean to arrive? We have reached the physical destination of the Y-TOP Gathering 2017, but what and where is our true destination? The Y-TOP flag has been hoisted, but we are only just beginning to lift the essences and goals of the Y-TOP into the air. From today, we are starting to project our ideas and passions into the sky, just like the flag that is happily waving under the Portuguese sun. This day was all about settling, (re)meeting each other, and laying the foundations of every Y-TOP Gathering, most importantly: The Agreements. However unquestionable it is that we are in one of the hottest, driest places in Europe, the begin

The arrival (Day 1)

The preparation has finished! The future is coming together with the Y-TOP. Today the air was clear and pure, and so were our minds. With no effort, great spontaneity and togetherness the hostel Pousada De Juventude transformed from cocoon to butterfly. We hung up welcoming signs, agreements for the place, clues on how to team-up, inspiring quotes from great figures, and finally we raised the Natural Human Communication flag up against the sky! We met with Eduardo Caveca, director of orchestra Banda da Covilhã which kindly and readly provided us with lots of amazing musical instruments! Guitars, percussions, keybords, djambe, cello.. and many more magics. To gave a boost to the beginning we

Preparing the place (Preparation day 4)

Today is making day! Doing doing doing. Our minds worked as one, our hands were speed dating between each other, cutting and drawing, painting and sticking. We mapped the place which feels more and more like home. Few families for together one last time to update some details and get in new exciting ideas for games and activities. The food we cook seems to get everyday better and better. Perhaps is the atmosphere in the Pousada De Juventude, perhaps is the alpine air.. we like to think that is the energy of the camp coming. From every country everyone are getting ready, closing their bags, shining their travelling shoes, listening to all those butterflies in the belly, thinking about the mom

Refining the summer camp(Preparation day 3)

Minus 2 days until 82 more friends from around the world will join us here in Serra de Estrella, the mountain of the stars. This was a special day for the Preparation Team. We worked on the program of the camp and we connected with the place and with the people even more, especially with Pedro and Lino from the Pousada de Juventudes where we're staying. They showed us the magical city neraby, Covilhã, full of life and colours, and they helped us finding places in need where we can volunteer. After a whole afternoon of research.. SUCCESS! Kindergardens, local associations, 2 festivals, parks and other natural spots that need some cleaning. One day of the camp will be fully dedicated to them!

Making the place ours (Preparation day 2)

The second day of preparation is still about landing and arriving; even more than the day before. Slowly, through living and re-arranging within the hostel, we settle and make the place our own. This also leaves us more calm and concentrated as a group. Also, the surrounding nature deserves a make-over: no plastic garbage is to disturb the calm streams and green mosses close to our hostel. During the preparation days, of course many practical issues require time and attention. But, to prepare the right mind and set of skills to work on those practicalities, the youth assistants are also in need of in-depth sessions on Y-top's core principles and starting points. We refamiliarise ourselves wi

Arriving on the top of the mountain (preparation day 1)

A different group of people, a different climate, a different country, but the same reason for getting together: the preparation towards the Y-top Gathering 2017. This time on Serra da Estrela in Portugal; it already feels like the mountain was awaiting our arrival and the environment seems to naturally give us space to breathe, create and welcome the right energies. In the shade of the trees we firstly let our minds wander: we speak about curiosity, the effect of the altitude of the place, and projections towards the next days. "We've made it here. Now we've got to make it here." We let ourselves arrive first, to be able to prepare the soon arrival of all the participants. We cleanse our mi

© 2014 Y-top international.