As one of the main outcomes of 2-year-long learning partnership was created a 10-hour supportive course which can be used with adult learners who have difficulties in finding their way in the labour market. The course was built on shared methods, tools and educational principles of all the partners and has been tested in all the partner institutions in their work. The materials of the course include the best practices of the partner institutions and members of their local networks, methods and tools to impel to self-realisation.
The fourth partner meeting was organized on 6th – 10th March 2015 by Sintagmi srl in Rome, Italy. The principal aim of the working meeting was to present the experience of the supporting course done in home countries.
First working day
9:30 – 10:30 – Welcoming, introduction to the meeting, getting to know each other. We started our day with team-building and it was done by one Italian colleague in a very unusual way. She is a musician and she did "body percussion" with us. We made the rhythm using our body. Then in national groups we created a little performance for 2 minutes using movements, sounds, words.
11:00 – 13:00 – Presentation of experience of the supporting course
After a coffee break in national groups we created a visual poster about the experience of the supporting course that we had in home countries and it turned out to present our identity and values. It was so interesting to see that despite the huge differences of our nationalities, cultures, backgrounds we share common values: family, home, nature and beloved profession as the things we strive to.
17:00-20:00 Experiential workshop with an historical experience of adult education in Rome: Il Fiume Association "for the common good of health": Shiatsu for everybody, a way to communicate and to develop your inner abilities (Wear comfortable clothes and socks)
After vegetarian lunch (in the International House of Women :-) we went to Associazione il Fiume http://www.centroilfiume.it/category/ass-il-fiume/, an association which aim is "health for common good". We met people who work or study there and had Shiatsu session with them. As they explained we didn't try to learn Shiatsu because it's not possible within few hours, we learned few little things that we could do at home with our family, friends or beloved ones to make them feel better. First, we had to choose someone from the group whom we trust and feel we could hold as a baby, with care and tenderness. Then we massaged the hands and backs, listened to each other with closed eyes, gave and received. This is what is important in Shiatsu - learn how to be in a dialogue, how to give and accept.
Second working day
09:30 – 12:00 Visit to the international anti-nuclear exhibition "SENZATOMICA. From a Culture of Violence to a Culture of Peace: Transforming the Human Spirit"
In the morning we were invited to visit the international anti-nuclear exhibition "SENZATOMICA. From a Culture of Violence to a Culture of Peace: Transforming the Human Spirit" organized by the Soka Gakkai International, a worldwide lay Buddhist association that promotes peace, culture and education through personal change and social contribution. Our friends from Italian group volunteered there as guides and invited all of us to come to take part in the event. The exhibition impressed me very much. First, the place where it was organized. This huge area used to be the biggest slaughter-house in Rome until 1975 and it still has all the things and equipment that reminds of numerous slaughter of kettle. Although, many groups and associations are settling there now trying to make the abandoned premises alive, it does not produce a nice feeling. The walls still keep dead energy.
The exhibition, on the contrary, was very encouraging and thought-provoking. Our guide, a very nice and kind lady, talked to us that disarmament of the world starts with disarmament of our hearts and building the trust. Creating a global sense of a deep connection between people is a first step toward world peace. Principle elements that we have to develop to reach world peace: interconnection, dialogue, education, courage, engagement and hope. On the walls were pictures, facts, explanations and quotes.
"Every one of us can make a contribution. And quite often we are looking for the big things and forget that, wherever we are, we can make a contribution. Sometimes I tell myself, I may only be planting a tree here, but just imagine what's happening if there are billions of people out there doing something. Just imagine the power of what we can do." - Wangari Maathai. It was written on the wall. I believe that we shouldn't lose hope, we can make a contribution, each of us can and together we can make a change.
13:30 – 16:00 – Visit to the Archaeological area of the Roman Forum; and the Palatine (Augustus Emperor Palace)
17:00-20:00 - Free time (visiting Rome in small groups)
Third working day
10:00 – 11:00 Staff meeting
11:00 Meeting with Italian experts of adult education: Pietro Ragni, Delia Zingarelli, Cristina Miliacca, Lucia Attimonelli
11:00–13:00 Meeting with representatives of collaborative economy (coworking/makersLab)
On the last day in Rome we met with two young ladies, both architects to know about their experience in co-working and co-housing (or in more general meaning collaborative living). They told us, that after a few years of attempts to have the office of their own in Rome, they quit this idea because it was very expensive and they got an idea to rent a very big room and invite there other people who need a working place. Now they have this co-working place, where people of different professions work (architects, photographers, designers). They said that besides saving money they gained a ot of other advantages with this solution: they help each other with their skills, they give new ideas to each other, they share phone, internet, they cook together and communicate more.
After co-working place they decided to organize co-housing place - a house where people or families could live together, having private bedrooms and bathrooms but shared living room and kitchen. This way people could communicate more, save money, help each other with some housework or babysitting, be more sustainable for themselves and society.
13:00 Certificate ceremony
Third partner meeting was organized on 5th – 9th September 2014 by Cappadocia Training Academy CAPADEMY in Nevsehir, Turkey.
The aim of the working meeting was to present the working methods of the partners' institutions hence providing the adult learners with a possibility to share their life experience, personal and professional stories.
The meeting started with welcoming words and introduction by Tuncay Özdemir, the project coordinator from the hosting organization Cappadocia Training Academy CAPADEMY. After the opening speech, all the participants had a chance to get to know each other through various icebreakers, name games and get to know each other activities. These fun and warming-up activities provided the participants with an opportunity to 'get-to-know-each-other,' and to begin feeling more comfortable with each another. They released the tension and uncertainty and prepared the participants for a team-building task in groups.
The learners were put into international teams and given the task of making the tallest tower that would stand by itself. A tower should have also had a story. They had only 30 minutes and had limited resources to do so: a plastic cup, paper, a few pens and a piece of tape. Participants were encouraged to communicate with each other using available means and skills of communication, to think creatively and to show resourcefulness in order to complete the task.
After lunch we were taken to Göreme Town & Göreme Open Air Museum, one of Turkey's Unesco World Heritage Sites, known for its thousand-year-old churches with beautiful frescoes. After Göreme Open-Air Museum we went to the natural rock citadel Uçhisar, the tallest point in Cappadocia. There we climbed the tall rock outcrop via tunnels and enjoyed the spectacular panoramic view of Cappadocia.
Second working day started with a moment of connection. The whole group, leaded by Paola Conti from Sintagmi s.r.l., formed a circle, facing inward and holding hands of each other. Our task was to recieve and pass further an energy sygnal sent by one of the participants. It created a moment of connection and wholeness in a group and we passed on to the workshop lead by the Italian partner. The workshop was built on autobiographical story-telling. At first everyone had to pick up a picture that would represent their main „ingredient“, an essence of their life or individuality. Then in small groups the participants shared their stories, showed the pictures they had chosen and explained why. Then we collected all the “ingredients” that represented participants and their values into one “cauldron” in order to create the unifying blend (“soup”) of the group.
After reflecting on “where we begin” we passed on to the part “where we are now”. For this workshop we used mandala-method. After a short introduction to the concept of mandala, the participants in small international groups created group mandalas, consisting of personal pieces (worlds) and a central unifying element, all together encompassed in a protective circle.
After the lunch we separated – while the staff members were discussing the project issues and supportive course content, the learners participated in the Paper Relief Art Workshop. Participants learned how to construct a three-dimensional picture using the elements and principles of art and paper construction techniques.
Third working day started with the workshope "Flower of life" lead by Andre Caeiro from Casa Seis. The workshop was focused on self-reflection about where we are in 8 different areas of our life. It also helped the participants pinpoint those areas they need to focus on to create a whole and balanced life. This tool is good to do an evaluation and is something tangible that a person can keep and look. Participants draw a scheme consisted of 8 section representing their current life balance. The life area they wanted to reflect on were chosen by each participant individually. Then they had to rank their level of satisfaction with each life area by drawing a line to create an outer edge of the “flower”. It was done in color to make it more pictorial. When the “flower” was ready each participant had to choose one area of his/her life that need attention and think of the way he/she could change it to the better.
After thorough reflection each participant wrote a letter to himself/herself sending a positive message and planning the changes he/she would make in the chosen life area until Christmas 2014. Later the letters were taken by the coordinators and had to be sent to the participant just before Christmas so they could see if they made the changes they planned.
After that we went to Avanos town which is set on the banks of the Kizilirmak, the Red River, which gets its name from the clay that it deposits. This clay has provided Avanos with pottery for centuries and the town is still dominated by this industry. The main street has numerous shops and workshops selling plain and decorated pots and plates. In one pottery workshop we could watch the potters at work using kick wheels, the design of which has remained unchanged for generations. Some of the participants dared to try it themselves and succeeded to make a beautiful piece of pottery!
Certificate ceremony was incredibly warm and heartfelt, accompanied by a beautiful music and dances.
Second partner meeting was held on 23-27 May in Sintra (Portugal). It was faultlessly organized by Casa Seis - Associação para o Desenvolvimento, Portugal.
The main aims of the meeting were the following:
The meeting started with welcoming words and introduction by Andre Caeiro, the project coordinator from the hosting organization Casa Seis. After the opening speech, all the participants had a chance to get to know each other. Using a ball of yarn we presented ourselves and created a web that „connected“ us into a group for the rest of the meeting and hopefully even further.
Next the participants presented their culture by drawing a poster that includes its most essential elements. The participants worked in their national groups, learners and staff members together. When participants got to know each other better, Andre Caeiro presented the Portugal partner organization Casa Seis, its main target group, activities and methodology.
In the afternoon all participants were taken to the Monserrate Park, a masterpiece of landscaping and botanical engineering and is one of the most exquisite green areas in Portugal. The gardens of the Monserrat Park are designed to embrace the unique microclimates that are found within the Sintra mountain region to create a magnificent park in which over 3,000 exotic species can still be seen today. Plenty of exotic species, narrow footpaths ponds and waterfalls work together to create a sense of tranquility, mysticism and great beauty.
Evening programme offered the participants a chance to view a dance show of young dancing group, as well as learn basic movements of traditional Portuguese dances.
At the beginning of the second working day we separated – while the staff members were discussing the project issues and a supportive course content, the learners participated in the following workshops based on the methodology of Casa Seis:
- African dance workshop
- Cooking (Portuguese bread and gazpacho) workshop
In the afternoon we went to Lisbon where we had a long and interesting tour in some of the most spectacular parts of the city.
At the beginning of the third working day the Italian partner Sintagmi s.r.l (Paola and Luca) made a brief introduction and overview of the pioneering training course The new international competencies: creativity to work and health that was held in Rome with total 22 participants. A training taught through creative workshops: the enhancement of the skills developed in all spheres of life. A wide range of classic, contemporary and innovative methodology was used during this training course:
In the afternoon everyone moved to the Casa Seis where we had excursion on its premises. We visited classrooms, a sport playground, a technical room, teachers rooms, a social observatory, a food bank room, a computer class and a music studio. The staff of the organization gave an overview about the main activities of the organization, that are all intended to support better inclusion of young and adult people with immigrant background into Portuguese society.
The meeting was concluded with a potent accord - visit to the Westernmost point of the mainland Europe (Cabo da Roca) and the Atlantic Ocean.
The project, DIFFERENT WAYS OF SELF-REALIZATION IN THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITY, - a Grundtvig learning partnership financed by the European Union - supports opportunities for self-realization of young adults who want to improve their working and living capacity in Europe through exchanges, moments of study and knowledge between partners of Estonia, Italy, Portugal, Turkey.
The pilot training course: enrollments until February 15, 2014
The new core competencies relate to the health, social life, international mobility and professional autonomy. A training through creative workshops: the enhancement of the skills developed in all spheres of life. A surge of energy to give direction to my commitment, my efforts and my abilities.
What I take away
A creative and strategic approach to understanding "what I have in my suitcase," and what I need to continue my journey in work, relationships and creativity to redefine, to express and promote - also through the web - my professional profile: an e-portfolio to be placed online.
Learning from experience
Participants will experience how it is possible to document and promote existing skills through a guided reflection on their own life and professional history.
The internal martial arts, and the method of systemic constellations will accompany the participants to make their experience of centering, of their own well-being and inner power and how it is possible to give direction to their efforts and desires.
Participants and horses together - an experience of social learning - will have the opportunity to re-discover the value and the possibility of being oneself in the group and in the complex system of relationships in which we live.
Welcoming, getting to know each other, practical information
The meeting started with welcoming words and opening remarks of the hosting organisation represented by Galina Kushanova. After the openning note, everyone had a chance to get to know each other. In order to overcome the language barrier it was decided to carry this session out in non-formal way, using different non-formal methods: name games, drawing portraits of each other, introducing what we are good at, what we want to learn and the way we like to learn.
After introducing themselves the participants also presented their culture by drawing a collective image of it. The participants worked in their national groups, learners and staff members together.
Presentation of the organizations and discussion on the experiences of teaching adults
The ‘introductory stage’ was followed by the first presentation. An introduction of the Grundtvig learning partnership project “DIFFERENT WAYS OF SELF-REALIZATION IN THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITY” (Power Point Presentation) was made by Jelena Lohmatova. She gave a short review of the project idea and underlined the main aspects of the project (objectives, needs, results and outcomes, cooperation and communication, learners involvement.) Then, the introduction of partner organization were made by Jurij Ljubetskij (MTÜ Uus Sild, Estonia), Öznur Özdemir (CAPADEMY, Turkey), André Caeiro (A Casa Seis, Portugal) and Paola Conti (Sintagmi s.r.l., Italy)
In the evening, there was a musical surprise awaiting for all of us – a concert of the folk ensemble „Supryadki“ (meaning conjoint spinning). We sang Russian and Estonian folk songs and danced traditional dances all together.
World-café about methods for teaching adult learners
The second day started with discussion about methods for teaching adult learners. In the national working groups the participants tried to give the answers on the following questions:
• methods we use with adult learners
• methods of the future
• characteristics of a successful learners
• future competencies
Discussion on the aims and methodology of the course
After a break the floor was taken by Paola Conti (Sintagmi s.r.l.) making an introduction to the methodology of the supportive course. As our collaboration continued we started thinking of a shorter name for the project. The one that we had in the application (“DIFFERENT WAYS OF SELF-REALIZATION IN THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITY”) was too long to use. Therefore Paola suggested to create an easy and short one, so that, when we present the project or write an article, we could use an easier one that also reflects the idea of the project. Through the „brain storming“ different names were offered. The best version however was not chosen. It has to be chosen and agreed on between all partners. Then Paola also suggested to develop a project logo. The interesting and creative ideas were collected from participants and it was agreed, that Paola will send them all to the partners. The best version will be chosen by voting.
Discussion on the 10-hours learning course (themes and a format)
After the lunch break Vladimir Naumov (MTÜ Uus Sild) presented the idea of 10-hours supportive course for adult learners, seeking the employment. He presented the plan that he uses in his everyday work.
During the intense discussion that followed the presentation the partners agreed upon:
• to focus on the components:
- learn values
- accept community
- present yourself to the community
• No matter what idea will be chosen as a final one, every partner will adapt it to the realities of their community and beneficiaries' needs.
Night guided tour in the Narva Castle
In the evening the participants had a night guided tour in Narva Castle. During this exciting evening trip we all had a perfect opportunity to hear the old castle legends. The bravest participated in an accolade ceremony. The tour introduces the town history throughout different periods.
Visit to NGO Uus Sild
The morning of third meeting day started with a visit to MTÜ Uus Sild and excursion on its premises. We visited classrooms, a teacher room, as well as felting, ceramics, handicraft and carpenter workshops. All introduced activities are intended for adults of risk groups (senior people, long-term unemployed, people with special needs, etc.) in order to support their better inclusion into the society.
Meeting with the representatives of local authorities
After coming back from MTÜ Uus Sild we separated. The learners went to a creative scrapbooking workshop while thestaff members had a meeting with the representatives of Ida-Viru County Government, Ida-Viru Enterprise Center, Narva Municipality and Estonian Unemployment Insurance Fund. The main topics that were discusses at the meeting were: the general situation with unemployment in Estonia, the reasons of unemployment among Russian-speaking minority in Estonia, requirements and expectations of employers.
Visit to Narva College
After the lunch break we went to the excursion to the University of Tartu Narva College.
The meeting ended with building the framework of the project, making schedule for further steps and final agreements on sharing tasks.
A learning document
with contributions of all the partners