A summary of the seminar in Slovakia
The motto of the seminar: One person can make a change. One person is important.
General key words: Cold. Ladybirds (if you wonder why, ask me)
Day by day:
Arrival day - the bus from Bratislava airport to the seminar place got lost. The road disappeared in the field but the bus driver kept on driving until we reached some bushes that would destroy the bus. Then the driver got to believe that it was not the right road and we turned (after 15 minuts of backing first). The food was very good (Unexpectadly. And so it was the whole week.)
First day - Active participation day. Discussions about ways how to change. Does one person matter? It does. We got to know that our expert who was supposed to cover the whole day programme on minorities would not be able to arrive. So prep.team got some extra tasks to do.
Second day - Minorities. We managed. We prepared a great programme. And the movie "Freedom writers" touched us all. Now we know - one person can make a difference.
Third day - Minorities continue. Presentation of the countries. We learned that we ourselves have plenty of prejudices and stereotypes. That eventhough we claim how open-minded and tolerant we are, our behaviuor such small comments or giggling about "cruel" reality prove the opposite. There is a need to work with that a bit more.
Fourth day - Excursion day. Some dissappointment because of the lack of skiing equipment in the rental places in the skiing resort (meaning no skiing) was cured by an alternative programme - small trip to the top of the mountains. Wonderful sunny weather above the clouds, white snow around, greatness and mistery of the mountains made it up for us.
Fifth day - Minorities continue. Discussions on national identity and the question about its neccessity caused some confrontation. Looking now at the evaluations - it served only for the good. Conclusion for myself: it is neccessary to tell if there is something wrong or if one senses a misunderstanding otherwise it can go wrong. As soon as a problem is "cought" in the beginning, it can be easily solved. AND - honesty honesty honesty! Important!!!!!!
Sixth day - Practice of recruitment of new members in the morning. Gender presentation in the evening. Some very obvious things for one person are not at all reflected by another one. There is a need to launch discussions to start the reflection process and sensitize our members.
Seventh day - different workshops. Farewell party.
Eigth day - Departure. Wr could not face more troubles after we left the seminar place as we faced. Cold cold train, loong waiting for food in Bratislava that ended up in three wrong dishes served, being short of time, delayed plane, missed bus home, not the best weather for driving the car in dark. BUT we managed =) We all arrived home, safe and with nice memories from the seminar.
The evening programmes: The most creative evening programmes I have ever taken part in. I am still amazed. All the countries did really well and took care of well prepared activities to entertain the others. THANK YOU all for that!
Feelings afterwards: The preparatory team did a good and responsible job. The participants contributed to the great development of the seminar. Am having several thoughts on my mind (related to the topics). I will share in next entries.
One person can make a change!
Except for that ham sznitzel i think this was one of the best food i have ever tasted on events like this. Not only was it good, it was also much of it.
One person can make a change! YES!
Isn't that the best message for Active and every single member of it - in the beginning of 2008?
=) I am vegetarian so I have no clue about the ham schnitzel =) It makes me very happy that even non-Slovaks liked the food =)
I also enjoyed the food, I ate so much that now I have to get rid of the kilos I gained there:D And the seminar in general left a really good impression to me, at least in a way that I feel that I should really think more about things and go more into depths. There haven't been many seminars after which I would feel that I need to change myself. But some people and some discussions really left a big impression on me, be it negative or positive, in any ways an impression is good, because it makes you think about things.