08 agosto 2017

O testemunho da Fran

Hi, I'm Fran! I come from south of France. I am doing an EVS in Portugal for one year.
I arrived in Lisbon on June 1st, the first day of the Festas de Lisboa, which take place throughout June. As soon as I arrived, I had the chance to party every night and meet many new people. I live in an apartment with many other volunteers like me, and the building in which I live has 3 apartments like mine, filled with young volunteers from all walks of life and all nationalities, so it really a “Spanish hostel” as we say in France. Even though I was already used to living with many flatmates, it was a big change for me because I usually live in a small village, where there are few new people to meet. Living in a big city like Lisbon and learning a new language is a challenge for me, but I am ready to take it up! For the moment I really like the city and its inhabitants, in the same way that I like the people with whom I live and work.

I work in an association whose mission is to study and protect the birds of Portugal. Having studied ecology and having often worked on birds, I am like a fish in the water. I like the work that is done, it is every week different, and many of my missions take me to go to the north of the country, which allows me to visit places other than the surroundings of Lisbon. I will say that until now the experience is very pleasant and rewarding and I recommend to all to do an EVS in Lisbon!

Fran De Coster

07 agosto 2017

One Wild Life: testemunhos dos participantes

 Aqui temos mais testemunhos dos participantes do curso de formação One Wild Life, que decorreu de 15 a 25 de Junho de 2017 em Sintra.

Arne Drews, Alemanha
Hi folks, my name is Arne and I‘m a youth worker from Berlin, Germany.
I had the chance to attend the wonderful Erasmus+ One Wild Life- training course on fostering authentic vocation in youth work, that took place in Sintra in June. Hosted and organised by spin it gathered people from 7 different european countries. It was an incredibly diverse group of extremely interesting people and we all stayed together at a fairly progressive permaculture farm and learned about all kinds of approaches and methods that can be used in supporting (young) folks in finding out about their personal goals, values and vocation. We also looked into how one can implement those findings in concrete ways by using tools like the Theory U or Dragon Dreaming. The training course provided us participants with opportunities to grow together on an intellectual level through these models whereas some alone time in nature gave us the chance to become aware of our personal resources. The free time between the sessions was usually filled with inspiring conversations about everything under the sun but often focused on the personal processes we all went through. We all felt so enriched with new insights about ourselves, social work and what really matters in life at the end of those beautiful 10 days. The incredible facilitation team did an amazing job and always made us feel like we were in good hands.
In my particular case the techniques and methods that were applied and taught are directly applicable at my job. One of the things I do is facilitating follow up seminars for young folks who come back to Germany after volunteering abroad in the social field. They often don‘t know yet what to do with their lives and appreciate exercises that help them figuring out which role they want to play in society.
I‘m deeply grateful for the opportunity to attend this training course and I wouldn‘t hesitate to do it again!
Cheers, folks!

Marlies van Duijn, Holanda
OWL was for me an experience where different puzzle pieces that I learned the last years fall together in one big puzzle.
We got the Theory by experiencing it ourself and that makes that I am feeling that I am owning it more myself and that I can start on passing it on to the youngsters I work with.
Through the exercises I came again closer to my own dream and my talents that I have been hiding a bit the last years, back at home I took time to look closer to them and make the right steps to get them to reality! :)
OWL is an interesting course if you want to widen your wings for alternative approaches in supporting people around you.
I highly do recommend OWL for the quality and broadening your horizon on how you can work nowadays with youngsters!

Violeta Ilieva, Bulgária
One Wild LifeIt is, isn't it. The first day each of us (the participants) had to present our projects or whatever we felt passionate about. Hearing about various initiatives felt inspiring. So this is what people are capable of when working together!
My presentation was about group dynamics. I had prepared a diagram – two circles, one of them full of colorful smileys, the other one full of little black demons. There were arrows going both ways between the two circles. A man, who I now consider a close friend, had a very interesting presentation a bit before me – symbols of two man, the first one with his head crossed out, and an arrow going from the first man to the second one. He was talking about jumping into the abyss. We literally spent 24 hours a day together, 10 days straight. We learned together, chilled together, ate together, slept together (as in the same space). We shared our inspiration, but also some deep pain and personal insecurities. Some individual traumatic experiences also came out. All a part of the official program, all within the common circle, and later extending beyond it in private communication. I have no clue if the organizers had actually seen such things coming. They certainly didn't seem well prepared to handle them. There was a lot of laughter, quite a bit of inspiration and gratitude, some tears, anxiety, aggression, feeling of being lost or helpless. The social drama of being a human being in a group fully unfolded in this microcosm of limited time and space. Communication was always deep, strong bonds were formed, the emotional thread messily going from one person to another.
Of course we learned a lot. It's not like we learned all the games and songs – we recorded them though, so we can always go back to them, play and sing, imagine we are once again a part of the social whole we thought ourselves to be. We did not memorize all the theories and diagrams either – once again, they are easily available in the records and the book one of the organizers had co-authored. Rather, we learned from trying to walk together, the mistakes we made on the way, letting people close in, facing ourselves and facing others while not at our top shape.
In the end we whispered loving words in each other's ears, we hugged and cried. Yes, it was as melodramatic as it sounds :D Even more. I got sick right after the course ended. I came back home completely drained. Though I did learn a new precious socio-emotional skill.
Now I'm asked if I would recommended the course. No, I wouldn't. Jumping into the abyss is strictly a matter of individual judgment. And nobody can tell you what you'll find down there :D

Atanas Bakalov, Bulgária
The permaculture place has very good atmosphere and I want to thank the organisers for choosing that lovely place for our 10 days experience. 
For me the program was intense full of interactive activities. But the most important and helping for me was the fact that the participants were above 25 and most of them actively working already with youth in different organisations. So we shared useful experiences. 
The lightness of the spirit in the most participants in the group made the whole program unforgettable energised, full of enthusiasm and positive vibes. I am very grateful for that adventure! 

01 agosto 2017

Curso de Formação One Wild Life

O curso de formação One Wild Life decorreu de 15 a 25 de Junho de 2017 em Sintra. Aqui ficam uns pequenos testemunhos de alguns dos participantes.

Kārlis Laizāns, Látvia
A training course which took me on a journey. At the beginning a journey inside me,  getting to know myself, looking at my life from different points of view, sharing my life story with others and listening to others stories. There was a lot of digging inside myself for what is there, what I like and don’t like about it. We shared our dreams and passions too. The first part of the process ended with a sweat - lodge ceremony. A ceremonial sauna, after which I did feel reborn. Coming out of it and seeing the world with new eyes.
Second part of the training course was about crystallising, planning, figuring out what we can and want to give to the world. We lived as a community throughout the training course. I felt the true power of our community at the end, when we had our final ritual, I’ve heard it being called “Angels walk” – people make two lines facing each other and one with eyes closed is passing through in the middle. People from the sides are giving love, support and good energy through their touch and/or words. Beautiful, powerful and emotional way to enjoy for the last time, what we had created. 

Ricardo Pfeiffer, Alemanha
During the One Wild Life training course I learned a lot about myself and this helps me a lot in the stage which I am right now, trying to start projects regarding three main topics, which became very clear during the course, which are education, design and upcycling systems. I have been working on those topics since some time ago but it was not that clear to me that I need to focus my long term goals on them, and from that dream and vision come back to the small tasks that I need to be doing towards getting there. And as part of what I want to do is education, all the methods that we learned are quite useful for me to apply them during any course that I will be sharing as a host in the future. I learned that as clear I am about what are my passions and abilities that I have to offer to the world, the more motivated I will be to take action on those paths, and the same happens to every person, but it is not easy to have clarity, so the methods and activities that were shared are tools to help people gain self clarity and understanding.
The course organisation couldn't be better held, the staff members were so well balanced between each other that the results of the course couldn't really be better. We became a family since the first days of the course, and this is also a big learning that I take from the course and will take into account when planning education events: the participants must feel a complete environment of respect and trust, and in order to achieve this environment, the first step is from the organisers, by selecting similar minded people that match very precisely the content of the course, then always being focused on harmonic moments with flexibility towards any happenings, without pressure and stress. The physical place also enhances the trust. If the course would have happened at a concrete building with no nature around it is felt, so the place was also ideal. And finally the activities were very useful for all, and at the moments when anyone needed a break, there was the complete freedom to take that break. I took a lot of learnings towards inner growth and that I can apply further on. I got a new family and great tools for positive youth change, I couldn't ask for more from this course. I feel thankful for the opportunity.

Emese Dömösi, Hungária
The ’One Wild Life – finding authentic vocation’ training course made me sure that I’m not an UFO; I’m not a lonely, strange soul with weird thoughts who thinks always ’outside the box’ . I have mates from different fields, backgrounds, interest on this planet who are so different from me but kind of the same. Who understands and value their unique self and think that Earth is a good place to live in; who are sure that their personal development matters not just for them but the people around them and the whole society as well. They know that they came with a mission and looking their ways to unfold their talent they are gifted to.
To go along on this exciting life journey I got so much tools, methods to implement on this course that I’m unstoppable now from bring the best out of me and from my focus group. Girls, women and mothers need that more than ever!

Gyöngyvér Balogh, Hungária
The One Wild Life Training course sounded like the perfect opportunity when reading the call for the first time. Professionally, it offered answers, techniques for education questions I am working with on a daily basis. I expected to learn new motivation tool, playful ways of teaching, orientation students, helping them what they really want. I did get all of these, and I like to think that I was also able to give something back, to contribute with my ideas, experience. 
What I did not expect, was a self-development, truly therapeutic course, that helped me find my own way, helped me answer a lot of personal and professional questions that I have been struggling with for a while and had no idea how to answer. I did not expect soul work, sharing circles and learning about my own motivations in such an intensive manner, surrounded by so many truly amazing people. I could get closer to these people in 10 days that I could have gotten in years in other settings. I have heard amazing, sometimes shocking stories, experiences, and I could also share what is in my mind and heart. I did not know that in order to teach this journey I first have to go through it myself, but I am very glad that I had to do it. It just made so much sense!  The One Wild Life training course was a shock, a surprise, and a miracle.