Date: 1 – 7 July 2011
Venue: Strumica, Macedonia
Organizer: Association for progress,
education and lobbying – PEL
Report: Training course named “Conflict? Not a chance!” took place in Strumica, Macedonia. Despite my initial concerns about what would Macedonia look like, how would the course be organized and who the other participants would be, I was excited. It was the first time I participated in an international project and as such this project will stay in my memory for the rest of my life.
After the arrival of participants, we started with ice – breaking games and we ended the day with a dinner. For the rest of the days we were trained in conflict management as the title of training course implies. We have received a really great training thanks to our two amazing trainers. Sebastian, who comes from Germany, but now lives and works in Skopje. His part of the training focused on theoretical knowledge of conflict. Zoran, who comes from Serbia, showed us another side of conflicts, especially interpersonal conflicts. Through lectures, videos, interactive games or theatre both Sebastian and Zoran passed on their knowledge and everyday experience to us. Besides us – two Czechs, there were participants from Germany, Poland, Latvia, Slovenia, Portugal, Italy, Macedonia, Serbia, Kosovo, Georgia and Russia. As it is a tradition in all projects, we also had international evenings, where we presented not only our country but also some of our dishes, drinks or music and dances. Another evening, the organizers prepared for us a trip to a restaurant, from which there was an amazing view over the city.
And of course, we had NGO market in order to introduce the NGO of every participant. One of the most valuable days for me was the last day – the goal was to introduce to us EU projects, to show us how to prepare our own project, what is needed for it, how apply for money and how to realize it – all with the help of trainers and organizers.
What I appreciate are friendships I have made with young people with the same life philosophy. And as Andrijana (one of our organizers) said: “Now you have started the process, which will last for your whole life. New places, new people, new friendships and new experiences.”