Summer vacations are very long and there is time for everything, moreover, in life there is time for everything. But we must take advantage of the opportunities it offers us to demonstrate and enjoy the essence of being social beings because, “happiness is not in our ‘I’, but in all of us, and a field of work can provide us, not only with new knowledge academics, but social experiences, enrichment and personal development…”.
This is how María Campo, professor of the Master’s Degree in Family Counseling at the International University of La Rioja (UNIR), defines it. For this professional, a work camp is a very good opportunity, especially for young people, to get out of that self-centeredness so characteristic of human beings “which tends to fade as we mature.” For this reason, for this teacher, “the fact of taking advantage of the activities of a work camp opens you up to give yourself and give up what you most want to be able to do something for someone or something”.
And it is that academic training is, without a doubt, fundamental, but «when students face life, there is much more than theoretical learning. There are a series of values, skills and attitudes that are even more important, such as effort, the ability to work, the willingness to refuse what you want to do what you have to do… and a work camp prepares you for all these things , whether Archeology, Ethnology, Environment, Reconstruction, Social Work, Socio-cultural Animation».
María points out that after living an experience in one of these fields, the participants develop a maturity that will prepare them efficiently for life, becoming more decisive and agile when seeking solutions to the needs and problems that arise. «And all this is not incompatible with enjoyment, because it is not only work, you can also discover new vocations, interests, relationships in these projects».
You do not need a specific profile to be part of a work camp, just desire and enthusiasm. “All those who are willing to surrender without compensation, beyond what they get on a personal level, are welcome. The main objective is to give oneself as a team to achieve a specific objective that seeks social, cultural or environmental improvement”, explains María.
The objective of the participants is the same, but each member of the team is different so «you have to be clear about what you have gone for and let yourself go. Contribute of course your ideas, experiences…, but let yourself be guided by a coordinator following some basic rules of coexistence».
“Knowing our history in order to move forward”
The International University of La Rioja (UNIR) has carried social commitment as its flag since its inception, and one way to make it tangible is through the first Calagurris-UNIR 2022 Work Camp, a space that aims to involve the entire educational community, teachers and students, and also to the rest of the people who, in this case, want to know the past in the best possible way, through archaeology.
UNIR is committed to the progress of La Rioja and «what better way to do it than knowing our history. For us, one way to progress is by understanding the past and a very good option is to do it in a practical way and first-hand”, explains María José Camino, head of the Calagurris 2022 Work Camp.
For this project, the university decided to delve into archeology and, in La Rioja, «the clearest location was Calahorra. In ancient times it was one of the most important cities in the Ebro Valley, a navigable river as far as Varea and a fundamental communication route that made it a commercial enclave and place of passage».
Camino points out that the city of Rioja stood out, in addition to its location, for being a large place, with public buildings such as circuses, Roman baths, a forum, a theatre…, “and this is currently reflected in the underground part of Calahorra, where there are many archaeological remains. A fact that allows them to carry out this type of work while delving into what daily life and art were like in Roman times.
One of the charms of this field is that it takes place in a real excavation and you don’t need any knowledge to be able to immerse yourself in it. “It is a magnificent way to get to know history for twelve days and not only by digging, but also by transferring the pieces found to the laboratory, classifying them and giving them meaning”, indicates María José. And to this we must add getaways to Briones, San Millán or Nájera.
Because to achieve one of the main missions of the UNIR, the transmission of knowledge, any excuse is good, “everything that is discovered in the classroom must be transferred to society, and it is very important to involve all our students and interested people in this case in the History of Art, Archaeology…».
María José underlines that for the participants of this Calagurris field it is an unforgettable experience to work in a real excavation, discovering pieces that can become very valuable and, above all, living with people who work for a common goal».
Dates and registration
The works will be carried out from Monday to Friday (July 10 – 22). In the mornings, work will be carried out in the excavation and in the afternoons, training workshops and guided tours will be organized.
To attend it will be necessary to fill out a pre-registration form. The work camp will provide the necessary material for the excavation work and the laboratory workshops.