One of the tasks we have as Development Instructors is to share our experiences and knowledge with people of our continent. This is why our programmes have a final period called “Bring it to the Public”. In this period our volunteers prepare presentations and workshops that try to bring their personal experience on the projects to our fellow European neighbours. As a team, they make a plan and a route of which countries and cities they want to visit, and together with the teachers they organise presentations for all kinds of people to try to inspire them and give new perspectives on how life is in the different sides of the world.
Have a look at the experiences of some of our volunteers on this period of their programme:
“Hello everybody! My name is Dan Mahulet and I finished the 12 Months Programme Poverty Activist and I did my 6 months service period in Zambia. My personal Journal Period it was a fantastic experience because I had the chance to meet new people and travel. I went to make presentations about my project experience in Denmark, Norway, Romania, Bulgaria and Spain. Why it was a great experience? Because you get to know many new people who have in mind the idea of doing the same thing like you but didn’t have the courage to go out from their comfort zone, yet. And we are so used to the online media, communicating by Facebook, Instagram or Skype and we forget the real interaction, face to face! Standing in front of the people and talking with them about my experience in Zambia and answering to all their questions, this is real communication! Of course the travelling part is great; you visit new places, try local food, and learn about new culture. The feeling is good because you see people appreciating what you did, first I saw the people in Zambia being grateful of what me and my team accomplished these makes you feeling useful in this unfair world. One of the challenges was the public speaking, most of us we have this fear, but after you get comfortable; I am telling you… it is a great feeling!”
Click here to watch Dan's movie from his time at the project in Zambia: http://joincicd.org/watertrio
“Jorge Barriga (18 months - Fighting with the Poor)
The “bring it to the public”/”journal period” is a part of our program and the teachers gave us the freedom to think "outside the box" and do something different.
Me and my team (Marta, Andrea and Luis) we decided that, more than just words (presentations) it would be very important to do it with actions/deeds, so we planned to work one month with refugees and the place we chose was Lesbos in Greece.
Beside that we also arranged to go to four countries to do presentations about the projects we're involved with in Africa, namely in Mozambique, and later we included the refugee experience in the presentation also.
The four countries we chose, and of course taking in consideration the team budget we had, were Romania (Brasov), Germany (Berlin), Poland (Cracow) and Austria (Vienna). We made the trip plan, budgets, arranged accommodation, flights and transportation and the plan was approved and so the "adventure" started.
The refugee experience made a huge impact on me and personally it was the best part of the bring it to the public period although it was a sweet and sour experience because we met amazing people/volunteers and NGO's that are making an incredible and crucial work there but the conditions of the people/refugees in Moria camp are very harsh, unhuman and difficult.
It was definitely a life-changing experience that I will never forget.
The next phase was making presentations in the countries we chose and that was also interesting because by doing the presentations we could share knowledge, lessons learned, challenges and accomplishments beside the fact that it is also a good way to encourage more people to join these kind of programmes and different kind of schools, help others and, little by little, make the world a better place for everybody.
Therefore the bring it to the public it's a very good way to share knowledge, experience, different cultures that some people don't know anything about and at the same time inspire/encourage more people and volunteers to join the programmes and make a difference and help others. It is also important for ourselves because these life-changing experiences are not easy to "sink in" and share with others and by doing the presentations we can get feedback from the people and improve not only the presentation but to share the experience with others.
Also a very good part is that you meet amazing people along the way that are in "the same boat" and it also give you the strength and inspiration to keep helping others and working to make other people life better.”
But this is not the only way to spread awareness! During the Gaia Scholarship period, our volunteers who help promoting our school and the different programmes also organise presentations in different European cities to share their experiences, the programmes at CICD and the projects of Africa and India. Recently we have visited different high schools and volunteer centres in Romania, next month we will visit Spain and in May we will also go to Slovenia. CICD never stops! So jump in and join our international movement.