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Mariana Anthropelou

2018/19 Athens

Mariana is a passionate ambassador for the value of play and its importance to our life long development.

During her studies in Graphic Design (BA) and Visual Communication (MA) she toyed with the idea of “how we learn”. Through widening her academic focus to include Early Childhood Development, together with a work placement with Kingston University’s nursery (UK), she realized that we learn as we play. Most importantly: through play we learn how to learn.

In the past six years she gained broad experience designing and facilitating creative workshops and pop-up playgrounds for various businesses, educational and cultural organizations in the UK, before returning to her birthplace (Athens) with a bag full of toys and a strong desire to help shape Greece’s ‘recession generation’ into powerful learners.

In 2017, in collaboration with esteemed cultural organizations (SNFCC), initiatives (ADAF, ASF) and schools (ACS), she founded GAMELY; an ever-growing phydgital game library that promotes soft skills and values through inclusive play.  As her START fellowship in 2018 shows, Mariana aspires to apply her project management skills to disseminate the benefits of play in urban and rural areas of Greece. Stay in touch with and insta:gamely.

Phase I

Capacity building in Germany

Learn more about the program phases


Sep - Nov

Project Title

neighborhood games / we are here

The 'neighborhood games' is creating a phigital comprehensive manual for the participatory planning of inclusive D.I.Y playgrounds.

The project is a case study, which brings residents, professionals and experts to a new, more effective decision-making mechanism for the public space, in order to collaboratively create urban gaming equipment. The need for this action became apparent when our local playground was removed due to municipal's financial
incapability to maintain it. Without any long-term plans for the playground restoration but a rapid decline of the surroundings, neighborhood safety and the community relations, a group of citizens among them mothers, kids, volunteers and local entrepreneurs, gathered to discuss potential solutions.

Host Institution

Culture Goes Europe

Culture Goes Europe / Soziokulturelle Initiative Erfurt e.V. is a non-profit, non-governmental organization; it is based in Erfurt and founded in 2005. It is led by young professionals who design, implement and coordinate local and international youth projects in the field of non-formal education, social and cultural projects. The aim of our organization is to actively promote cultural and social diversity among young people and, with their help, to create projects and initiatives in which they can be involved as organizers and participants.

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