28-30. 05. 2021. In Maribor, Slovenia, was held a second project meeting within the Erasmus+ Sport Project SHE LEADS. Although this is the second meeting within the project, it is still the first time that all participants havemet live, since the first meeting, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, took place online. Despite various procedural difficulties, all participants attended the meeting and began exchanging experiences with colleagues from other countries.

The meeting began on Friday 28.05. and first, the president of the KPD “Hej, gremo naprej”, Igor Oprešnik, addressed all attendees on behalf of the host who, after a brief welcome and introduction of the association, gave the word to coordinator in the project Nenad  Lečić. After their greetings, two very interesting presentations of the Mountaineering Association of Slovenia were held, first the presentation of the association itself, the system of organizing, the commissionsand categories of mountain guide training…, and then the results of the guide training programme for hiking persons with disabilities, which provoked special reactions from all present.

On the second day of the meeting, an exchange of experiences of good practice began. In a very constructive atmosphere in an interactive way, all female guides had the opportunity to answer many important issues related to the guide job, but most importantly, they had the opportunity to hear the experiences and opinions of their colleagues from other countries. The moderator of this part of the meeting was Jelena Prodanovic from the Mountaineering Association of Serbia, who is part of the project team, but also an experienced mountain guide with specialization for Via Ferrate. The topics discussed were: Howand why I became a guide; What qualities do women guides stand out in the outdoor community; Male guides are still better at…; A woman’s guide as an authority on a man; How a female guide’s collaboration with male colleagues can lead to the creation of a successful, complementary and harmonious team; Collaboration between women guides; Economic gains: work, extra work or hobby; Family? This topic was extremely interesting and its duration was extended so that everyone would have the opportunity to express their views.

After a successful start to the day, outdoor activities began. All participants took organized transportation first to the Tourist Household of Igor and Petra Leber in Zgornja Kungoti.  With a tasting of premium wine and homemade products, the hosts presented their household and took all guests through the wine cellar and tasting centre. The first outdoor activity followed, tour to the Placki Tower on the border with Austria. The tour was led by female guides from the host club. After climbing the beautiful mountaineering trail, participants also had the opportunity to make their way to the Placki Tower, overlooking the massive Alps on the state border between Slovenia and Austria. After this magnificent experience, activities are continued by descending from the top and orientation through beautiful vineyards. After a lot of walking, the time has come for a brake and lunch organized in Milena Vrezner’s household, in a beautiful environment with the compression of domestic products.  The following programme was followed by a visit to Vracko winery with a mandatory tasting, something that went ona tour of Maribor. Before, participants made it to the Maribor pyramid, from where the city is seen as in the palm of their palm. Friendly hosts patiently answered all the questions of curious guests, so after a short stay we all went on a tour of the city together. The starting point was the beautiful Maribor Park and we spent the rest of our time on a bus tour of the city’s sights, because bad weather disrupted our plans a little.

After a really interesting second day, followed by a really beautiful tour at the very end of our meeting, we can   say that the tour through the Bistriska  Gorge was the right idle on the cake for all the participants. Beautiful ambience, excellent track, superb guidance of Slovenian women guides and excellent mood have all contributed to all participants bringing beautiful impressions from this tour. For the very end of the project meeting, lunch was arranged at the Dovnik Inn where the meeting was summarized. The closing words were nenad Lečić as  project coordinator, Igor Oprešnik as representative host of the KPD “Hej, gremo naprej” and Claudia Sedda as representatives of the Association “Malik” from Sardinia.  The general impression is that three days spent in Slovenia for all participants are a valuable experience and certainly the beginning of co-operation in many other fields.

Finally, we convey the words of Igor Oprešnik, president of the KPD “Hej, gremo naprej”: We got off to a good start with this project “SHE LEADS” and I know that we will continue it well in Serbia. It was a great event with super women guides, who talked to each other about examples of good practice and demonstrated it practically in performing the action through Bistrisko vinogorje and before that through the debate.  It was a great event, which confirmed that diversity brings us even better. Well done to everyone and see you in Serbia.”