„First Steps“ brought together 28 people from Hungary, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey, Spain, Poland, Austria and Italy in a small place called Hollókő in Hungary (which is also a UNESCO world heritage site) in December 2019. Thanks to our friends from „MOVE to Be You„, who were the partner organization from Austria, we were part of it.Read More
From the 21st until 29th of October wEUnite took part in the training course “Coach your team by coaching yourself” in Ravnogor/Bulgaria. Besides getting to know all of the 34 participants, organizers and trainers from all over the world (17 different nationalities!) we were shown advanced techniques to not only coach the teams we work with, but also how we can coach ourselves.Read More
“Younique” – Diving into a new realityFrom the 05.09. – 14.09.2019, I and 23 other people from eight countries took part in an Erasmus+ trainings course called “Younique”. As the title of the training already tells, it was all about how to find your own uniqueness and how to help others finding theirs. The great thing with Erasmus+ is that everything you do is interactive – it´s based on non-formal-learning and for me it´s just so much more rewarding being part of a non-formal-learning environment than being cramped into a formal-learning system.Read More
Elisa, Manuel and Nina decided that this is their chance to start their career as trainers in the field of youth work and especially Erasmus+ projects. Having had a journey of approximately 24 hours all of them were happy when they finally arrived at the sunny venue and met the organizers and already some other participants.
|Elisa, Manuel, Nina|
Within those days we had around 60 hours of workshops, discussions, presentations and activities dealing with individual and group learning processes, needs assessment, learning styles, group dynamics, planning and implementing various activities and methods of non-formal education.
Thinking back now, Elisa said that before coming to Lecce she was excited to learn what should be considered when designing a training and which are the concepts behind. Furthermore, she expected to find out about the tasks of a trainer and to get to know useful tools for being a trainer. And of course she was also looking forward to meeting a lot of interesting people. A tool that Elisa found very useful was working in the co-trainer support groups. It helped her to stay focused during the whole week and motivated her each day to work on her personal learning goals. In the evenings they met for reflection and talked about what has worked for everyone throughout the day and in which field they still want to improve. Having had this support system definitely boosted her motivation a lot.
What Manuel has learnt most from BTT is that imperfect action is better than perfect
inaction, especially when it comes to trying out something new or to step out of the comfort zone. One can’t plan everything, but it is good to be well prepared and to have a plan B in case things don’t work out as expected. Being good in improvising is a necessary skill for a trainer as well as letting participants decide by themselves how much they want to challenge themselves (challenge by choice). What he found surprising was that is it not as hard as it seems to facilitate a workshop because many things are repetitive and if one knows the basic concepts and methods the rest will just fall in place. But one shouldn’t forget that there is always more than meets the eye of a participant. There is a lot of work and preparation necessary in order to be successful in implementing activities.
After this week Elisa, Manuel and Nina know how to set SMART goals in order to be successful, how the circle of learning works and can be used, which phases groups usually go through, how to give and take feedback and how to implement activities by themselves, to mention a few.
Having taken a first step towards trainership (no it is not a ship with trainers on it), the Austrian participants also got valuable feedback on their own workshop sessions from other participants that they want to share here:
What makes Elisa a great trainer is that she always gives her best and can easily adapt to
|Last evening – cheers to new trainers!|
different situations. She is able to quickly find her place in a team, puts effort in setting goals and is a well-organized person that still stays flexible if needed. Her positive and supportive attitude are also appreciated qualities.
What makes Manuel a great trainer is that he is curious, creative and has a positive mindset. He asks whenever he isn’t sure about understanding things, creates a great atmosphere in a group and works hard in order to achieve goals. Manuel is also good in motivating people to give their best while giving everyone space to be part of a team.
What makes Nina a great trainer is that she explains things in a peaceful way, is good in accomplishing goals, knows how to organize herself and sessions and is supportive in every way. When leading a session she doesn’t lose control over it, she is consistent and combines learnings in a good way.
Music makes feelings – what a beautiful title for an amazing youth exchange. Being in Rijeka again with many people I had the pleasure to meet before and also lots of new faces was simply great! Never have I seen a group of strangers grew together to such a strong team this fast. Having been part of it makes me feel proud. This experience and all the memories will stay with me for a very long time 🙂
It’s hard to describe this week in just a few sentences. I learned a lot about myself and experienced what it is like to be dragged out of my comfort zone right into the stress zone. But life starts where the comfort zone ends. I’m very thankful that I got the opportunity to improve myself and got inspired to try new things that used to scare me. This week in Croatia made me a better person 🙂
This was only my second Youth Exchange, but I could feel from the beginning that we all would have a great time together. Our group dynamic was just so purely friendly and full of positive energy. When thinking about it now, I feel really grateful to have been part of it and to have shared happy and sad feelings with such wonderful people.
This YE was something very special. I think it was one of the greatest experiences that I could have ever had. Creating music out of nothing with people who are unique in every different way you can imagine. Starting from the first day on we all shared a deep connection together. It was being open-hearted and open-minded. In fact, it didn’t take us a day to learn all those names by heart just because we were so different. Some played an instrument, some didn’t. Some had their funny dance workshops some had their own private time with a companion at the seaside. And everybody was still part of this amazing group. We were one big amount of kindness and amazingness.
Never have I ever … felt so emotional on a project. This Youth Exchange was not only interesting or just a good idea. It was timeless and sometimes breathtaking. Now I know that music truly makes feelings.
After this project I really believe that “Music Makes Feelings”. Within this awesome week with so many great and lovely people, I learned and experienced a lot that helped me to grow once more. I feel so much better, so much more motivated and so much more positive than ever before. I am still overwhelmed by all these wonderful memories in my head. A big thanks and a lot of hugs to every single one of you! You made this project very special to me!