Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic, is a beautiful place to visit. Its rich cultural and historical background is reflected in its stunning architecture and colorful streets, while its lively atmosphere attracts tourists worldwide. Thanks to the support of VSŠ Academia and the Erasmus+ project Costabex, students Tamara Bogosavac and Tatiana Dieudonne were allowed to travel to Prague and participate in workshops organized by the Czech Technical University, also the organizer of the project.

The Costabex project (Full Study Exchange – International Mental Health Programme) is an educational program focusing on the mental health of outgoing Erasmus+ students, aiming to prepare students for the risks and difficulties they might encounter during their exchange. The project team consists of members from three different countries: Lithuania, Slovenia, and the Czech Republic.

“We were very excited to have the opportunity to fulfil our dream of visiting Prague and expanding our knowledge. We attended two workshops on financial management and mental health within the Costabex project. These workshops were perfect for us as Tatiana is currently on an Erasmus+ exchange at the Academia in Maribor and I am preparing for my exchange.”

On the first day of the trip, they attended a workshop on financial management, which was very informative and interactive. They learned how to identify their income and expenditure and how financial literacy works. There was also more free time during the workshops to get to know the other participants. They discussed their budgetary aspects and received advice on how to deal with them. They also learned about financial analysis, which will be particularly useful for the Erasmus exchange. After the workshop, Tamara and Tatiana decided to explore the city and try the delicious food Prague has to offer.

On the second day, the students held a mental health workshop. They learned about the importance and difficulty of balancing mental health abroad. They touched on some of the deeper issues such as depression, anxiety and panic attacks. The mentor shared with them several different ways of coping with difficult days during the exchange.

“We learnt about different techniques to manage stress, promote relaxation and look after our well-being, which was a great refresher. One of the techniques we tried was progressive muscle relaxation, developed by Edmund Jacobson. This technique involves tensing and relaxing different muscle groups in the body, which can help reduce muscle tension and promote relaxation.”

After the workshops, Tamara and Tatiana took care of exploring the city and visiting some of its most famous sights. First, they walked across the Charles Bridge, one of Prague’s most famous landmarks. The bridge offers a stunning view of the city and is lined with street performers and souvenir vendors. Later in the morning they visited the Dancing House, a modern and unique building designed by the famous architect Frank Gehry. At the end of the day, they visited Prague Castle, a magnificent complex of buildings dating back to the 9th century. The castle offers a magnificent view of the city and the Old Town.

“We were lucky enough to catch the sunset from Prague Castle, which was a stunning scene, before catching the bus back to Maribor.”