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The Teamwork - my experience in the Gaia Team

When we want to go far, we go together
My name is Pamela Degele and I have been part of the Gaia team of CICD since February 2022, with the goal to raise the scholarship for my 12-month Poverty Activist programme. During this time, I have integrated in two main activities. The first one is in the area of promotion, where I mainly develop my volunteer activity. In this office my task is to attract and advise people from different countries about the school. Between three and four colleagues we discuss the most effective way to spread and communicate the objectives and programmes of the college. The second one...
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What does it mean to be a volunteer?

Together about creating the change
By Agustina Bastias, CICD Climate Activist at Richmond Vale Academy in St Vincent & the Grenadines Community work, a challenging journey of mutual development These last weeks we started to work with the communities… yes, finally. Even when we have had a really good time helping with the restoration of RVA during our first month and building more confidence and team spirit during that process, we were looking forward to go out to the communities and explore deeper the Vincentian culture. The two activities we just did with the communities were related with clean ups, but also with the beautification...
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Climate Activist team in action in St Vincent!

Hello from St Vincent & the Grenadines! My name is Mel and I am the Climate Activist team teacher at CICD. In November 2020 we started up a new team at CICD that had a period of almost 2 months of getting ready for a project period of 3 months in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, working with local farmers and communities to improve food security. 2 weeks before finishing the preparation period at CICD the volcano on the island started to wake up and we couldn’t manage to finalise our programme. We waited from the beginning of 2021 until...
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Luis Fraga Brum, Portugal

In the greenhouse at CICD
My name is Luis, I'm from Portugal and I live in Sunderland UK. I work as Clothes Collection Driver in CICD in Durham, where I find the purpose of contributing to reducing the imbalance caused by climate change. As I use to say, every donation of a bag of clothes that I put into the van makes me feel that I contribute to a better society, cutting down less trees, contributing to cleaning, giving a second life to many of these clothes and the opportunity to those most disadvantaged people of obtaining certain low price items of second-hand clothing, which new...
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Pavel Redkin, Russia

To travel, see the world and do something helpful!
Hello! I’m Pavel Redkin, 53, a retired teacher and self-employed ESL tutor from Russia. I was 39 and had been working at school for 22 years as a teacher including international AFS student exchange programmes. I was always hardworking and quite busy when one day I realized that daily routine had made me bored. I was looking for something really new and exciting in my life, I wanted just to travel, see the world and do something helpful for people around. That is why I joined CICD and enrolled for Development Instructor team in 2008. A completely new life Everything...
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David Christian, UK

I am a 42 year old Englishman from Rochdale, Greater Manchester.
I found out about CICD when I met 2 of its volunteers in Bradford, where they were selling magazines to raise money so they could travel to their projects in Africa. Why I decided to join CICD I was working as a street fundraiser for Amnesty International when I first found CICD. I knew that one day I wanted to go to one of these developing countries, so I could get involved myself, rather than just fundraising on the streets. This is something that excited me, so I jumped at the chance to join CICD. It meant a lot to...
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Alice Fidell, Climate Activist Summer programme

Sara and Alice with bughotel
My time at CICD has been an amazing and insightful learning experience, in an inclusive and welcoming community. The climate activist programme has hugely developed my understanding of the many aspects of climate change and the significance of how our own actions impact the world globally. I have been inspired through learning of all the small projects, both internationally and in the UK, that are working to reconnect society with nature, are raising awareness of how we can better use the resources we have and demonstrating the huge impact simple solutions can have on ourselves and the natural world. I...
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Best Buddies - building a meaningful future together!

CICD is part of a network of schools - we call ourselves "Another Kind of School". Educational institutions of many kinds and for all ages - with a modern and experience based pedagogical approach, and with love and space for all students to develop and grow in their own way. Here we introduce to you: PTG International Youth College (Ungdomshøjskolen PTG) in Denmark PTG is a private and independent boarding school where young people from 18-30 years can study, work and live together. It is based at Tvind international campus in the country side in western Denmark. Among the neighbours at...
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Learning by doing in CICD-s organic garden farm

Mon and Roula in the potato field
4 months ago in April Monzer and Roula, two of our students, decided to take the responsibility for running our garden farm when their programmes were put on hold. They stepped up to the plate – and it has gone really well! They have learned a lot through own studies as well as through their practice. Learning by doing is one of the keys to studies, work and life here at CICD – and not only in the garden! There are a million details to remember and do the right way, and at the right time...everything from the spacing between...
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Green Capitalism - a solution to climate breakdown?

One of the areas of study & debate for the Climate Activist summer course is ways to resolve the climate crisis. What kind of economic system can make it possible to reduce emissions enough to avoid an escalating climate breakdown? In the light of the recent IPCC report, this is now a very urgent discussion to have. Is Green capitalism a good alternative to the present system? Here is Beth Cunninghams take on this! The idea of Green Capitalism Green capitalism is contradictory by nature and is inherently unsustainable. Also called market-economy, it purports to create wealth and, spur innovation...
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Take a peak into the Climate Activist Summer programme!

Clean energy in ample supply! Pic courtesy of Jason Blackeye
The 6 R-s: Repair, Reduce, Refuse, Reuse, Recycle, Repeat Our Climate Activist summer programme has just started, and one of the themes they study is the 6 R-s. Maybe you wonder: Does it really makes any difference what I do? The answer is YES – it does! Why re-cycle and repair and reuse..? Our “consumer society” is one of the reasons for rising CO2 emissions, causing global warming and climate change. We are often called "consumers" rather than "citizens". And our habits of shopping and consuming are causing huge environmental problems - because we are so many, and it has...
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Danail Petrov, Development Instructor

Danny from Fighting with the Poor 12 month’s course.
I was part of the Gaia Corse, as well as the Fighting with the Poor 12 month’s course. During my preparation I have got a lot of new knowledge. The studies have been a eye opener, I got information I never had before. I have learned about politics, history, economy and science. I have learned so many things about Poverty, Global Warming and Climate Change, compassion and togetherness. Besides the studies on itself, what really made a big impact on me was the practical skills that I have learned during my time at CICD, those skills and my new knowledge...
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Carina Andrade, Development Instructor

Carina Andrade
When studying at CICD I had the opportunity to develop personal and professional skills in so many ways. The concept of living in a community was a relevant part for my preparation to the project and to the world - everyone counts on everyone and I learned how to deal with difficulties that can arise at any time as a group and as an individual. I always remember the good comradeship and the respect people had for each other even when things weren't at their best and I believe I keep taking that with me through life. Working at a...
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People's Exam: Investigations and actions for local sustainability

Climate Activists preparing soil for raised beds
At CICD we have close to a negative carbon foot-print, because of our clothes and shoes recycling project. But we want to become much more sustainable in more areas. The slogan "Think global - act local" says it all -  this is exactly what we practice with our programmes and in the daily life here at the college. We are Another Kind of School - and we also have another kind of exams. It's called a People's Exam. Instead of a panel of experts in a possibly quite narrow field, the exam-board is everyone at the school – all who...
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Noemi's story - working in Mozambique and perspectives on development

Noemi is teacher for the Gaia team, she arrived to CICD in October 2015
Aitana asked Noemi to tell a little about her life and her experiences from Mozambique. I’m Noemi, I come from Romania, from the part of Transylvania and I studied social work. I always had a special attraction to Africa, I knew that one day I will go and work there. When I was 3 years old I wanted to become a pediatrician so I could go and help the kids in Africa. To become a pediatrician you need biology and chemistry but I didn't have teachers who could give me the desire to learn and understand these disciplines, so I...
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An African night at CICD

Our team organised a fantastic evening for all the school!
By Daniela Morales, Poverty Activist October team 2020 That's right ... it's amazing how in five words (An African Night at CICD) you can summarise in a simple way what a whole week of dedication and teamwork organising an event at school was. But, how did the idea of organising an event emerge, who organised it, how was it to manage and organise it? In this short text I will explain a little more about the life and activities that we develop as students (DI’s, as we say) at our school. When you start your training period or preparation for...
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Do you want to run with me?

Good morning from rural East Yorkshire!
Since I arrived here at CICD, I feel as if many moments of the day are acquiring more value thanks to the sharing of them with other people and I'm very grateful for that. There is a place in Yorkshire, lost between the fields and the English farms, able to recreate that harmony between man and nature that today seems to have been lost. Here you can walk alongside the trees with squirrels, rabbits and, when you’re lucky, roe deer. Peace and silence accompany you throughout the day, especially in the early morning or late at night. In the midst...
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Why I decided to volunteer

Edoardo's team went for a trip to the ocean near the school
WHY I DECIDED TO VOLUNTEER We say we love Nature, but do we really care about it? We say we love people, but do we know what is going on around the world? Do we know something about pollution, hunger, slavery, illnesses, forced prostitution and child abuse? Maybe we know a lot of things, maybe we can watch a touching doumentary and feel deep emotions for an hour or two, but then we always go back to our little structured reality made of work, family, hobbies and stuff. I was growing up between school, family and friends, struggling with what...
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From the corporate world to adventure, new learning and doing good - Margaritas story

Margarita and her team mate Vasile together with a school class in India
Hello! I am Margarita, the result of a love between Colombia and Spain, a person curious about the world, an admirer of the different and a believer in human kindness. I am writing to share my story and encourage you if at any time you decide to take a different step in life. I grew up in the country of magical realism, a place for which I feel immensely grateful for having given me love, study and work at times when it was not always easy. After working more than 10 years in the corporate world and with great achievements,...
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My personal journey as a Development Instructor

Together to create change for the better, CICD people come from many different countries and back grounds
My personal journey as a Development Instructor with CICD My name is Agustina Bastías Solis, I am 28 years old and I am from Chile. I am currently at CICD waiting to restart my program that was interrupted in Botswana due to Covid 19, although my trip started much earlier. Before coming to CICD in July 2019, I was working in my country as a psychologist in programs related to the protection and the restitution of the rights of children with difficult backgrounds. At that time, my motivation for volunteering was related to acquiring new work experiences and growing personally...
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