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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Communication for Change

Between 13th and 19th of November 2015, the Global Human Rights Defence organised a training titled ‘Communications for Change’, a 6 days training for 21 youth workers from seven different countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Croatia, Italy, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine). The aims of the training were to develop a strong communication strategy for youth workers and their organisations; to explore possible future partnership between the participating organisations; to organize projects focusing on improving the quality of youth work; to improve the capacity of youth workers in social media, online fundraising, campaigns and marketing and to allow the them to share best practices with other youth workers.

The training was an intensive six days presentations and workshops that mostly started at 10:00 to 19:00. It always consisted of presentations by trainers, workshops and role-playing. At the end of each day, the participants were divided into smaller groups for an evaluation session. The project officially started on Sunday, 13 September 2015 with the introduction to the training week and the objectives of it and followed by team building games.

                                   Communication Strategy training by GHRD project team

 On the following day, the participants had on Communication Strategy that was presented by GHRD team, followed by workshop on Introduction to Communication and Advocacy by UNOY (The United Network of Young Peacebuilders).

                           Introduction to Communication and Advocacy workshop by UNOY 

On the third day, the participants had a session on how to make a perfect pitch for their work and organisations. This session gave the opportunity to the participants to learn about guerrilla marketing through Elevator Pitch. The participants learned how to deliver the summary of their ideas to someone important (potential investors, clients, etc.) on an elevator ride, which approximately takes in thirty seconds to two minutes.

                                                         Brainstorming ideas 

 The following day, the workshop was presented by Enviu, a start-up company that focused on improving the quality of life of people in a sustainable way. This session gave the participants a practical insight into communication strategy in 5 stages, which are planning, preparation, implementation, evaluation and follow-up and decide the best way for each phase. In the end, every organisation had to present their own version of communications strategy for a project.

                                                     Team-building game in Mytikas

Next training was a visit to youth organisations who had successful approaches in working with young people through theatre and other creative means. For instance, one approach is to offer young people, who have dropped out of school, an alternative education through arts. The participants were engaged in a similar workshop which began with a team building game led by one of the coaches. The participants were also challenged to make a short play (approximately 5 minutes) with the topic on daily social problems, for example, school bullying.

The last day of the training was about storytelling through social media and online fundraising. These sessions were practical ones which included many discussions and practical examples on how to implement the learning outcomes directly to your work.

                                                      In the Communication Museum

Apart from presentations and workshops, the participants also had the chance to visit the Communication Museum. The visit to the Communication Museum, for instance, was aimed to show to the participants the impact of communication on daily life. In this museum, the participants could enjoy designs, secret messages, expeditions, facts and a touch of nostalgia.

                                                       Ukrainian food and drink

One of the unique programmes of the ‘Communication for Change’ training was the Intercultural Evening. This programme gave the participants the opportunity to introduce typical drinks and food from their country and other items as well, such as pictures, music, typical clothing, etc.

                                   Participants from Croatia with their cultural presentation

                                                          Serbian and Croatian desks

Participants from every country had to deliver a brief presentation about their countries and to explain drinks, food and items that they brought from home, followed by a food tasting. Participants from Croatia arranged a small interactive quiz; they gave souvenirs to people who could answer questions about their country.

                                                   GHRD team, Anna and Jasper, 
                                      were introducing typical Dutch snacks and sweets

                                                                     Armenian desk 

Furthermore, Ukrainian participants introduced their folk dance that was demonstrated together. As a host, GHRD team also had the chance to give a presentation about the Netherlands. They introduced typical Dutch snacks and sweets and also arranged a small quiz for the participants.