We are still #branchingout: What we did so far and what are our next steps?

Most of the times when a project is happening we are caught up in doing various tasks from our to-do lists - writing e-mails and reports, organizing activities and what not. But sometimes it is also good to reflect and evaluate the project outcomes and what is going to happen next. The Branching out project team is thinking a lot about it at the moment.

Throughout the Branching out: (re)connecting ideas project we wanted to gather people and learn more on how to include refugees/newcomers in a daily life in our countries, cities and neighbourhoods; how we can deepen the exchange between different cultures and what we can discover from each others’ stories and backgrounds.

The Community forum: Branching out happened in June in Antwerp. We imagined it like this – people come, we all get inspired, and then people return to do what they already intended to do beforehand with our support – organize cooking events, festivals, movie screenings etc. to bring together local people and newcomers and to give a chance to everybody to learn something new. 13 local events in 7 countries already happened and there is still 8 more to come until September 2018.

 

During the project we have noticed a connection which was made up of different experiences of people working on the field with refugees and asylum seekers. This was a very unique opportunity both for SCI branches and their partner organizations to connect in a different setting – through partially facilitated non-formal learning, while giving a space for people to talk about the topics they personally find interesting.

 Some of the methods and workshops presented on the Community forum are now used in different local events. For example, the Colours of a Journey, a platform presented during the Community forum, that collects drawings of refugee children and youngsters around the world already inspired local actions in Hungary and in Belgium.

What will happen next?

At the moment the project team is working on the Playing cards, an easy-to-use tool that gathers 13 different methods in order to facilitate intercultural dialogue and bring people together – on workcamps, seminars, trainings, workshops etc. The method is created entirely based on experience of volunteers from the Community forum and the people that contributed to the Building Bridges toolkit.

7 local activities are still about to happen in 6 European countries until 30th September 2018. Follow our Facebook page and be up-to-date when it comes to promotion of these activities!

A Strategic Planning workshop will occur in Finland in October, where we plan to evaluate the project outcomes within a small, dedicated group of people, that was taking part in different project phases.

Stay tuned for more updates on Branching out: (re)connecting ideas project! Also, feel free to check out the Resources page, where we post different methods and projects presented on the Community forum and used during the Local activities.

We will keep the SCI movement updated on our next project outcomes. You are also very welcome to ask us questions and engage in future activities. Few more months to go until the end of 2018! We continue #branchingout and #volunteeringforpeace!

 

 

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