Decoding Global Citizenship in action with hands-on community projects!
Jena GCC 2022: After brainstorming in skill-building workshops, Fellows embarked on Project Visits to decode how Global Citizenship plays out in reality!
On the 19th and 20th of October, the #JenaGCC2022 schedule comprised skills workshops and Project Visits. But before setting out, Fellows converged for an Open Space Harvest. In a deeply self-reflective activity, participants discussed the impact the insights in the past few days and months have had on them and how they would use them to act moving forward! Read on to discover the dialogues, ideas, and exciting innovations by enterprising minds!
HEROES® – Promoting an Inclusive Society!
This was a capacity-building activity coupled with a project visit. We collaborated with HEROES®, a project of RAA Leipzig, to focus on promoting inclusion through rare, unique, and innovative paradigms. The activity was an opportunity for people to air their voices on boosting feminist work in intercultural contexts! This was reinforced later with a project visit where participants interacted with “heroes” to explore gender empowerment motivations first-hand! The “Heroes” are young men from honor-cultural backgrounds who have the courage to contribute to society and challenge existing norms and structures. They become role models for other young men and help break violence, exclusion, and discrimination cycles.
The results of the visit were two-fold: firstly, it helped our Fellows better understand how projects deal with differing contextual grounds and prepared them to better design project management strategies. Secondly, it further solidified the belief that person’s will, courage and the right mindset can have far-reaching impacts on creating tangible changes!
Community Resilience – Overcoming the Unexpected!
What would you do when your project and mission face unprecedented, adverse situations? This is exactly what participants were encouraged to face head-on through employing critical methodologies concerning project planning and community interventions! In a critical thinking-oriented atmosphere, Fellows interacted to work through the fear of failure and tackle adversities head-on with a clear-cut methodology to help them achieve their goals! A participant shares:
“Every project or idea is bound to face challenges. It was fascinating to see how we could turn this into an opportunity! This greatly enhanced my confidence and willpower to lead and plan projects!”
This session sought to reconcile the idea of production and consumption with sustainability. With theoretical knowledge and interactive group activities, participants learned different models and real-life case studies! The range of topics broached was wide and significantly contemporary – from Artificial Intelligence, green energy, carbon neutrality, investment, and funds for sustainability – and more! Fellows walked away with a profound knowledge of conducting business aligned with the SDGs, as exemplified by this quote:
“I was surprised to see how organizations and businesses around the world are making efforts to shift to a more eco-friendly setting. It was also exciting to see how new technologies can spur green initiatives!”
This project visit with the think-tank was a deep dive into SDGs 9,11 and 13! Through personal insights into the organization’s work spanning sustainability education, local practices, impact collaborations, and much more, we uncovered local and not-so-local practices! Fellows learned how to utilize scientific wisdom and tools to boost impact collaboration and put in place practices for sustainable development. A participant explains:
“It was an eye-opener for understanding how science and good city planning can culminate in climate-protected and resilient communities.”
This project visit revolved around sustainable consumption. Food waste is a global problem and there are many ways we can stop it. There are many ways we can eliminate waste by donating extra food to food banks/ soup kitchens and food-sharing organizations. However, there are also many challenges like the capacity of resources, availability of farmland, seasonal variations, etc. All this and much more was unpacked in the Project Visit with Fairwertbar e.V, a group of people committed to sustainability and working towards shared spaces open to all and framed by a common understanding of values. Lena (a Fellow from the USA) shares:
“The project visit was very informative because I never really thought about the different ways to eliminate food waste before!”
The 20th of October marked the day we would wrap up GCC 2022, with a special reflection session, and a farewell dinner complete with a night of DJ music! With this, we brought the curtains down on our first in-person worldwide meeting since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, walking away with a treasure trove of knowledge, friendships, conversations, and ideas than ever before!