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Aberdeen warms to a lesson from Sweden

IT took a visit from a group of Swedish under-16s to make young people from the Seaton area of Aberdeen realise that they did not need drink to have a good time, according to a Scottish Executive publication on international education among youth and community groups.

The Seaton over-18s only began to examine their own habits when they realised there was a problem socialising with the younger Swedes unable, by law, to drink. It encouraged them to consider the needs of others.

Wilma Smith, of the Seaton Community Project, points out that most young people do not mix outside the Seaton area, far less with younger people from another country. Taking charge of their accommodation and taking on chores was a first for many of them.

The "Think Global, Act Local" guidance for community learning and development partnerships aims to promote exchanges between Scottish groups and partners in Europe and farther afield, as well as encourage an international dimension to community learning.

Young people should be able to appreciate other cultures and ways of life, and assess the impact on their own country.

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