MICHAELA YORDANOVA

BIOLOGIST + NATURE GUIDE, BULGARIAN MOUNTAINS 

“We have to do something about Bulgaria’s beautiful mountains. Wildlife needs help and rural people need perspectives. We need fresh ideas and busy hands to activate potentials.”

The Bulgarian Mountains Ranges are like Europe’s Rocky Mountains with bears, canoeing, searching for gold and gemstones in calm, winding rivers under spectacular cliffs, topped by ancient villages of medieval charme, with churches full of coptic icons, traditional hard green cheese and everything else you need to forget routine life at home.

But this natural paradise is under threat from climate change, illegal logging, mining and more. And for youth born in regions back in time, also back in “development” and connectivity with the dynamic world seen on tv … not all is well. 

Michaela lives up in the mountains with decades of experience as biologist (also in Germany) and mountain guide, with a special interest in natural systems and cycles. 

She is our expert witness on 

  • climate change in the mountains
  • biodiversity
  • wildlife migration trails
  • state of affairs in Bulgaria, Eastern Europe

and what to do about it – also together! The cherry on the cake is that Michaela welcomes us to

  • explore the mountains on holiday and study visits
  • design and do  projects in the region
  • organize YL Summer Camps

with young participants from all over Europe!

So learn, dream, build bonds and let’s see what we’ll do with it!

TOPICS

nature conservation

plants and wildlife in mountain regions

climate change impacts

wildlife migration trails

Bulgaria, Eastern Europe

PREPARATION

Do some research on Bulgaria’s Rhodope Mountains. And on wildlife migration trails. And on specific climate change challenge to mountain regions, flora and fauna. Also, think about challenges for remote rural villages in today’s modern world, about the life of adults and children. 

ACTIONS

Think of life in rural mountain regions

Think of making a living, of friends, of education … of potential advantages and disadvantages. How can one boost advantages? What role can internet communication and international relations have? What role can international school cooperation play? And visits? And eco-cultural tourism? What can youth-led tourism look like? What volunteer and work holidays could one arrange in mountain regions? What cool things can you experience there that you cannot ever get in beach hotels and resorts? Such as gorge kayaking and gemstone hunting in rivers.

Imagine a 1-4 week holiday expedition

Imagine your school class goes on a 1 to 4-week expedition to a rural mountain region.

What will make it most awesome?

You are strong enough to drop gaming and tv. What would you love to experience? What can you contribute?

What will make exciting stories to read in your local newspaper, stories to hear in presentations? What stories can you design, live and share back home? 

Tip: Research the Rhodope Mountains region, tourism attractions, funky stuff … what aspects, spots will add magic to the journey? Gorge kayaking and gemstone seeking for sure… 

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FOLLOW-UP

Do you want to turn plans into action to

  • protect and restore natural heritage
  • cultural heritage
  • wildlife migration trails
  • small business
  • etc

… how about activating several schools in the greater region, also cities, to team up?

Connects great with

SKHUMBUZO

SKHUMBUZO

Theatre coach, youth organizer, community centre, South Africa

MARY REYNOLDS

MARY REYNOLDS

We Are The Ark, The Garden Awakening, Top 10 Landscaper Of All Time, Ireland