"Jotaka" is a Spanish Illustrator who creates cute and pretty illustrations using colored textured paper. In ordinary life his name is Juan Carlos, and he lives in Valencia, Spain. All his works are unique, each has its own style, and the characters in his illustrations are very optimistic and funny. The technique of this artist's work is quite simple: he cuts out the paper elements of a new composition and pastes them on top of each other, creating a collage. We were very curious to know a little bit more about him.

Dancing has always been a popular form of exercise, but it is now medically proven that dancing, and especially the Argentinean tango, has great medical benefits. “Tango therapy” is the term applied to the therapeutic purposes of this dance, and it is rapidly becoming a popular way to increase the quality of life of many patients. Dancing not only cures the body, it also stimulates the mind and is used to help people who suffer with everything from Parkinson’s disease to depression and a list of phobias. Thirty eight years old Giulia Zimei, from Rome, is one of the passionate tango teachers who use Argentinean tango as a form of physical and mental activity to facilitate movement and get therapeutic benefits.

Whereas most people only read in the news about the risks and horrors to which refugees are exposed in the Mediterranean Sea, there are also people who are actively trying to do something about it. Today, Youth Time speaks to Marko Den Hartogh, who works as the Head of Mission for the Boat Refugee Foundation and is based on the island of Malta. Get ready to find out about the nerve-wracking work he’s involved in trying to save the lives of refugees, and what you can actually do if you want to help.

She fell in love with taekwondo when she was only 4, and hasn’t stopped training since. The youngest Olympic champion on the Serbian Olympic team, still a high school student, Tijana Bogdanovic (18) says she is slowly coming to terms with her success. A very modest and down-to-earth girl, Tijana can not imagine bringing home the silver medal without the support of her team, family, and friends. As she notes, each and every one of them contributed in a way, making her become wiser and more mature. The path to silver was anything but easy, still every time she was on the edge of giving up, she would remember the words of her coach: "If you give up once, then it becomes a habit, so don’t you ever give up."

So far, he has managed to cooperate with the Peace Nobel prize winner, Malala Yousafzai, he has had dinner with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, and has found a place as a Board member of the European Youth Forum. Dejan Bojanic, only 25 years old, does have a story to tell: from 900 candidates he was selected to be one of 15 associates of the UN Secretary, and the prestigious Forbes magazine has recognized him as one of the most influential young people in Europe under the age of 30. Today, he works for an organization that puts enormous effort into coping with the crisis of refugee children. In an interview with YT magazine he talks about the highlights of his unique professional journey.

Roberto Rivas is a young and talented jewelry & handbag designer from Madrid, Spain. Looking at the original leather bags and handmade designs that the artist creates all by himself, you cannot help but wonder where the inspiration comes from. I sat down with Roberto to discuss his creative path and how he chose to make bags.

Marko Bubalo (32), the Serbian pilot who was honoured to fly the whole Serbian Olympic team back home, says he will never forget that day. Although there was a delay due to technical issues, that didn’t affect the great atmosphere in both the flight deck and the airplane. The mood was cheerful and loud, and the passengers were singing most of the time. A pilot’s job, however, can be far away from milk and honey. Still, apart from huge responsibilities and frequent stressful moments, Marko would never change what he does, and he says: "While you are probably tucked in your bed, I might just happen to be passing above you, and that is a feeling no other job can replace."

Cassandra Lin (19) was only 11 when she started the TGIF (Turn Grease Into Fuel) project. Many other people were trying to raise awareness about global warming with similar projects, but with poor results or none at all – and she did it! With a group of classmates she put together as a community service team, she visited the Energy Solution Expo at the University of Rhode Island – the step that changed everything. They found out that biodiesel can be produced from waste cooking oil. Today, a total of 480 families in three different countries heating their homes this way. Cassandra says she and her team are not going to stop there.

Huffington Post has named him as one of the nine young tech innovators who are changing the world. After his invention called Eyeboard was presented to the public, he became internationally recognized. He started his first company at the age of 14, teaching himself software programming and digital electronics. Today, the owner of Intelsath, Luis Cruz (23), is developing new products, learning more about how to invest smartly in the future, but most of all – he spreads knowledge all around his home country, Honduras, giving inspiration to young people to learn, advance, and succeed.

Just several days ago, on a beautiful Swiss mountain called Passugg, I started my NOW journey together with 29 community activists, change makers, and social entrepreneurs from ten European countries. The objective was to make this world a better, greener, and nicer place to live.


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