Nocrich Scout Centre – H.C. Habermann is an educational youth centre developed since 2010 as a initiative of the National Organisation of Romanian Scouts. The aim of the of Nocrich Scout Centre is to offer non-formal educational programmes for young people, contributing to their development as agents of their own personal growth and as active citizens of their community. This is realised by using a specific learning method that makes each individual the main agent of his own development, as a confident, motivated, responsible and open person.
The youth centre is based in the village of Nocrich, 35km away from Sibiu. Nocrich village is located in the Hartibaciu Valley, a historical area, thus, most of the programmes offered by the youth centre focus on culture, crafts and creativity, in close communion with nature and community. Some of the craft activities developed in the area: making handmade tiles and bricks, restoration, woodcraft, wool-craft, calligraphy, leather-craft, working with iron or even basketwork (binding various types of twigs), gardening, permaculture and pottery.
The educational program provided uses a specific non-formal educational method The Scout Method and has certain elements:
- personal progress;
- community involvement;
- mentoring & support;
- learning by doing;
- team system;
- symbolic framework;
Using all these elements, throughout the year we develop weekly non-formal activities with children and youth from the Nocrich village, a poor rural area, with an extensive Roma population and various social and economic vulnerable groups. Working and learning in this environment can be challenging, but this way volunteers have a greater impact on the community and also on their personal development, acquiring extensive experience and know-how on social inclusion, non-discrimination, interculturality and equal chances.
Apart from working with the children in the village and offering volunteering programmes for youth, we are also planning different events for other members of the National Organisation of Romanian Scouts who come to Nocrich from all over the country for weekend activities and summer camps.
The activities are organised and developed by the two employees of the Nocrich Scout Centre and the trained youth workers from the National Organisation of Romanian Scouts. In the process of planning, developing, delivering activities we also involve volunteers who want to learn.
Another example of learning by doing, is the educational Pottery Workshop, developed since 2014, with the purpose to raise the interest of children and youth in discovering and preserving crafts and culture, at the same time as developing their creativity and handicraft skills.
Now the workshop is growing nicely, ofering Ceramics Activities, Traditional Pottery and also creative clay products made by volunteers and scouts from the community and from all over the world.
Each year since 2010 around 100 volunteers come each year to Nocrich for shorter or longer periods of time. For more that 7 years now, Nocrich Scout Centre offers young people short or long term volunteering programmes, developed as learning contexts for achieving full potential of their personal progress. Young volunteers receive responsibilities according to their preferences and interests, they are supported by a Volunteer Coordinator and receive mentoring from a Volunteer Mentor. Since 2015 we also started hosting and sending EVS volunteers both in short and long term projects. The team of volunteers from Nocrich has the structure and the cohesion of a family and the projects developed transpose the same spirit of innovation and creativity as an approach in the activities of non-formal education.
To recognize our impact on volunteering, in 2015, Nocrich Scout Centre was chosen “The Best Initiative to Encourage Volunteering” by the National Gala Of The Young Civil Society 2015, under the motto ‘Inspiring a new generation”.