Pronoia: Make people smile

Pronoia? Sounds like Paranoia? Actually it is the opposite! Pronoia is about having a positive aproach towards strangers passing by the street. It is about to have trust instead of fear. Lisa and Conchi – some volunteers and friends from Coimbra that we met on On-Arrival training invited us to participate in their Pronoia Day. Goal of the day? Make people smile!

So after we made the travel to the beautiful university city Coimbrawe got to know the organization APCC that hosted us for this day. It is a big centre for disabled children and their familys. There we prepared some letters and postive messages that we spread afterwards.


Mission 1: Being social workers means that the staff of APCC is caring about others all day long. So we wanted to make them happy and surprised them with free tea and coffee. Of course we had also cookies for the children 😉

Mission 2: Give a smile to strangers in Coimbra city. We left anonymous love letters in public toilets, put Take what you need-Posters on the walls, and gave Free Hugs…to old people and young people, women and men…we even hugged the police man! Sometimes shy, we had to go to people and be very open. In this manner we got a lot of hugs. Being a group of 9 international youngsters walking through Coimbra it happens that you get a lot of attention. Finally we had two journalists there and now we are in two different newspapers of Coimbra.


So what is the only thing missing in this complete day? Good food of course! So we gathered in Lisa’s and Conchi’s apartment to enjoy a faboulous international dinner. Chocolate cake, Tortilla, Kartoffelsalat, Coconut cake…finally Stani and me could not move anymore after so much good food and had to take Taxi to the bus station. Direction: Lisbon.





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