First things first, we were pleased to discover a very well done organisation of the event. The logistics, time-management, the facilitators and people who helped with the organisation deserve a big round of applause for implementing this kind of event. We are thankful that we had the chance to take part and we have nothing but respect and admiration for the people that worked on it. The only challenge we faced was that, as the European Parliament building is a very large administrative building, finding rooms/spaces for workshops was not an easy task, and events started late because of this.
The workshops that took place during the implementation of the event were split in three categories: Advocacy World (focused on policy-making), Organizing World (organising people & events in our local areas) and Comms World (which was focused on communication, public speaking and sharing experiences). All these categories had eight workshops each, for the duration of one and a half hours, which made it almost impossible to attend them all. Because of this, we chose subjects that we knew almost nothing about, some that we had little info about but not in detail and workshops that we knew about, but we wanted to see other people’s opinion.
Knowing almost nothing about policy-making, we chose to focus on this category and learn from people with more experience in this field the way they managed to produce a change in their areas. What Jay and myself enjoyed the most was the „Coffee with policymakers” workshop, in which we could meet with people working in this field, asking them questions and learning new ways of involving ourselves in policy-making processes. Public speaking session was also very interesting, since Ms. Priscilla Adade, the facilitator of the session, introduced us to various methods and techniques that we should use in order to speak to a wide audience.
Together with people from EMI (European Movement International), we learned how policies are being developed and better understand how they are being edited, so Georg Finer’s workshop on „Organising local policy dialogues” was the perfect continuation of EMI’s workshop.
With Georg, we learned how to organise and implement policy dialogues and what are the „DO’s & DON’T’s” of organising them. Here is a link to the padlet that we used during his workshop. Moreover, in Gabriella Civico’s (European Volunteer Center) workshop „Upscaling volunteer management” where she compared the volunteers with windmills (from the energy they create to how important they are in the community), I learned what are the needs of the volunteers and how we can better organise to achieve the common goals.
Overall, the whole experience was amazing and beneficial to Jay and myself and we’re thankful that we had the chance to participate in such a big event. Many thanks to all the superheroes and heroines that got involved with their time and energy, they are the people who inspire the next generations.
Jay and Mihai