I participated in the training YOUnique that happened 5.-14.9.2019, even though I am not in student age anymore because I fell in love with education and I invested my life into it. When I got a chance to have a look at how youth education looks like these days and how uniqueness can be encouraged, I couldn´t miss this chance. Yes, even though I am 55 years old, I participated in a 10-day training course through Erasmus+.
I was pleasantly surprised by the lightness with which the trainers managed to work with a group of 25 young people. Katka and Ivan have a natural authority in them, so everybody did what they were asked to do. With curiosity, I was waiting for how it was going to look like. Katka said that we would start each day with Karma yoga and as we had one yogi in the group, I thought we will be doing exercise every morning. But the true meaning of this task was accepted with responsibility by all of us. It included everyday cleaning, so we were washing the toilets, showers, sweeping, taking out bins…simply Karma yoga had the same importance as the whole learning experience.
Well, as we are talking about learning and education, I was nicely surprised again. We were experiencing all the exercises through all senses – often with closed eyes we were observing what was happening in us when we were stepping into the unknown, in other times we were describing, mirroring the outside layer of our friends, and later we went deeper. In different moments we were communicating without words and functioning in the whole team as one body.
The peak for me was the instructions: „Now you have two days when the programme is fully in your hands“! I was surprised what we were able to create in such an extremely short time. Each 3-4 people in groups prepared a programme for the others. With excitement, we were preparing surprise and expecting what the others would say. All of us were excellent. Once we thought that we were done and finished, following the quote „When you feel you can´t do more, go faster“, we received a new task from Katka and Ivan. It looked completely impossible – within two hours, we were supposed to create a screen play for a video tutorial of our workshops, lasting 1 – 3 minutes. And that is not all. We were supposed to shoot this tutorial with a help of a cameraman that was available only for 15 minutes for each group. No cuts, one shot, 3 minutes video. And you know what? All of us managed even this impossible task.
We were amazing and unique. Thanks to the training YOUnique. Thank you!
It is generally quite hard to grasp the concept of uniqueness and even harder to work with it and nourish it, which makes me even more glad to had been able to participate on TC YOUnique from organisation wEUnite, where we spent beautiful 10 days exploring ourselves and how our peers perceive us. Sunlit Austria’s Carinthia proved to be the perfect place for complete disconnection from everyday reality and mental focus on tight schedule laying ahead of us. Together with participants from 7 EU countries who I now call close friends, we had the opportunity to confront our fears, learn to give and accept feedback, contemplate how we are as opposed to how we want to be, truly open to our peers while seeking acceptance… Despite the high mental strain, the project made for an exquisite experience and I believe that everyone, including organizers, brought something from it to remember for the rest of their days. Thank you for everything!
Besides pictures, the atmosphere of the project is captured by video and furthermore participants created video tutorial with activities from the project.