Voices of volunteers from the training course «Peace Education Market»

Here are some voices of volunteers who participated in the training course “Peace Education Market” training that took place in Köniz (Bern, Switzerland) between 18 and 25 April. This training is part of the project “Educators for Peace”.

The participants deepened their knowledge of the concept of peace, participated in peace education workshops, got inspired by them, discussed current peace education trends and approaches, and learned about how to provide high-quality non-formal activities for peace.

DAY 1:

Today we kicked off the ‘Peace Education Market’ training, which will last for 7 days. Participants from all over the world came to Köniz, Switzerland, and got to meet each other for the first time.

We are happy to say everyone hit it off, and the next few days seem promising.

During this training, participants will have the chance to learn from each other and become better equipped as agents of peace.

By Albanoi Retkoceri

DAY 2:

In the morning, as the first activity, the participants sequenced according to their names. Secondly, they talked about how long they had participated in activities for peace. Then, they talked about what peace is, but before that, everyone picked a DIXIT card that reminded them of peace. They went around and mingled and asked each other why those chosen cards reminded them of peace.

As a following activity, they discussed what peace is around the world in small groups. They were also given a piece of paper, and they completed a crossword puzzle using the letters of P.E.A.C.E. After finishing, they stood as a group and presented their explanations for using those words.

The next activity was a 4-minute meditation by Ruba. The following activity was listing their 10 gratitudes. Everyone listed their blessings.

The other activity was “active listening.” Pairs were matched. One started to talk about anything they liked without being interrupted by the other, who showed that she/he was listening to him/her actively and attentively. Then, the roles were changed. As a final touch of the activity, both wrote their compliments to the other person whom he/she was listening to.

In the following activity, all participants were asked to go out and bring three items inside. After forming a circle, each closed their eyes and took the items in their right hand while the other should be empty. Each transferred their items into the hand of the participant standing next to them in three rounds. All things were gathered on a large piece of paper. The message was: “You are what you have brought”.

Next, negative and positive peace were discussed, as well as the three levels of positive peace: inner peace, Peace with others, and Peace for Nature. They called it a session for the morning.

In the afternoon, the participants were asked how to educate people about peace and the impacts of peace education.

As the last activity, a buzz activity was performed about how to give people feedback, tips, rules and important points while giving feedback.

By Berrin Bacaksiz

DAY 3:

Inspiring, beautiful, rollercoaster, eventful, grounding, enriching.
Those are just a few words that came to our minds when we tried to summarize this day.

One thing we all took from the morning: if you are (insert-a-whatever-feeling-you-like-here), go dancing!

Today we left ourselves to be found by those small tiny totems while exploring peace in nature, we tried to learn new things and challenged the ones we already knew. We did some creative writing, felt the power of storytelling, dived deep into the healing effect of fiction, reflected on the impact of tourism on peacemaking, explored gender & challenge bias, and tackled various aspects related to teamwork and conflict management.

Before deciding whether you feel like an early spring or an overcomplicated Swiss Saturday, there is just one suggestion for you: sometimes a bit of cake can make it all even better!

By Liliya Dakova

DAY 4:

We kicked off the day with lively dancing that left us energized and ready for the day. We dove into a riddle that proved to be more challenging than we anticipated and only after around 10 minutes that 2 participants were able to crack it down. We then delved into the concept of VUCA and explored it from different perspectives, gaining valuable insights into how we can navigate through an ever-changing world. To connect with nature and discover our strengths and capacities, we embarked on a solo journey for a few moments, each reflecting on our attitudes and experiences. With newfound clarity, we created our customized survival kits, ready to face any challenge that comes our way.

Imagine the perfect afternoon with your friends, where you decide to go on a spontaneous adventure to Bern. As we hopped on the bus, we played the music and the speaker invited everyone to join in on the fun including families and children. Before we knew it, we were singing and dancing all together with strangers joining in too!

As we made our way through the lively streets of Bern, we felt truly alive and happy. Couples danced with us, kids and their families joined in on the fun, and every one of us was spreading love and peace. These were beautiful moments that we will never forget.

As the night began to settle in, we didn’t want the fun to end. We headed back to our place, grabbed some popcorn, and snuggled up in our sleeping bags to watch the thrilling movie “Shutter Island.” The plot kept us on the edge of our seats, and the ending left us questioning everything we thought we knew. We spent the rest of the night analyzing the film and discussing our theories. It was a night full of adventure, laughter, and excitement that we’ll always cherish.

By Zoya Miari

DAY 5:

Today we had guests from different organizations, like Climastrike Berne, Esperanto, and Peace Women Across the World (WAW) among others.

Christina and Katharina from WAW found it inspiring to meet so many interesting people from so many countries, and a diverse audience. They had interesting talks made new contacts, and were asked interesting questions from the participants. “There was a big interest in our work”, which made them happy. Mireille and Sonia from Esperanto were so happy to be invited to this market. They found it wonderful and were very happy that so many people were interested in having a common language. Unfortunately, these two visitors had to leave before the end of the workshops. Maria from Friedensrat (Council of Peace) was very happy to be part of today’s event. She enjoyed meeting all the young people from so many different parts of the world and sharing their ideas – even struggling with language difficulties. “It was very inspiring and so valuable,” she said, and felt very empowered for her work. Thanks to all the visitors coming to the Pfadiheim and sharing with us! We enjoyed it very much!

By Rea Frei

DAY 6:

The Peace Education Market is officially over.

28 peace educators and trainers, leaders, peace activists, and youth workers from different countries and many more nationalities came together in Köniz (Bern) to improve their peace education activities.

Participants took part in and organised workshops, networked with each other, and most of all, they connected as peace activists, so that they can work together for peacebuilding.

They left the training feeling fulfilled and inspired to get started on their follow up actions, so that they can apply what they’ve learned in the training.

By Albanoi Retkoceri

DAY 7:

Find your bubble, they say. Fill it with people who challenge you to analyze, to depict; sometimes it might lead to a click. Discover solutions, assets, tools against your very own skepticism. Discuss whataboutism.

Share your bed, your bread, your tears. Her fears. Learn one word in a bizarrely beautiful language. Mispronounce thrice in succession, delineate. Memorize it for life, set a smile teaching transcription, clear your perspective, clean your crumbs, drop the ball that was thrown.

Inhale the 🍄 soup, exhale the forest, compare wildernesses, imagine yourself as an Appenzeller bitter, be brave, sport your contrasts, salute the kitchen crew, oppose obscurations, surround yourself with a calming river. Consider.

Catch the 11:34 direct train to Geneva. Embrace. Then place your personal belongings and newly collected fragments in a dedicated compartment. Soon you’ll go to your tiny apartment.

Paraphernalia coming from a peaceful Liliya.

By Liliya Dakova

More participants’ testimonials:

“During the program, I had the opportunity to meet amazing Loretta, and I conveyed my sincere gratitude to her, you and the entire team of SCI Switzerland.

I met many wonderful and talented peace builders from both safe countries and war-affected countries. It was incredibly valuable for me to share insights with individuals from such diverse backgrounds, discussing how people from safe countries define peace and solutions to overcome challenges.

I found the discussions, conversations, and workshops we engaged in to be very balanced and enriching.

Under the guidance of the dynamic duo, Natalie Jivkova and Gośka Tur, we delved into the realm of training enhancement, exploring novel peace education methodologies and inventive workshop scenarios. Their unwavering dedication and expertise propelled us forward on our learning journey.”

By Nirasha Piyawadani

We would also like to thank the cooking team for their hard work and support. The food was delicious!

This project was financially supported by Movetia. Movetia promotes exchange, mobility and cooperation within the fields of education, training and youth work – in Switzerland, Europe and worldwide. 

You May Also Like…

Share This