This is a reference for Panayiotis Theodorou

Captain Culture, Lefkosia Cyprus

The training activity took place
in Lefkosia, Cyprus
organised by Politistiko Ergastiri (The Cultural Workshop)
29 November - 6 December 2010
Reference person

Milena (Lazic) Nikolic

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Aims & objectives

This project started as part of SALTO's TOT – Training of Trainers and it took place in Slovenia in 2008 with the support from the Portuguese, Slovenian, Danish, Romanian and Turkish National Agencies. The next edition of Captain Culture was in Sicily in 2009.
The project was later developed having in consideration the needs of Politistiko Ergastiri in Lefkosia and its network, to organize a training with such a topic because the organisation is working a lot on Cultural diversity with young people (belonging to both majority and minority groups) at local level and in cooperation with other NGOs The awareness though on specific tools to use to tackle issues was very low.

The repetition of the training but with a more developed content occurred in Cyprus, giving a form that responded to needs presented during the last two implementations.

Main aims of the training course were:
- To empower and train youth workers how to deal with cultural diversity.
-To support youth workers to use cultural diversity as a tool to discover and work with identity.
-To encourage youth workers to work with concrete aspects of cultural diversity and integration of it in youth work with special focus on how to embrace creativity
-To foster future international projects and cooperation Participants on the Training course Captain Culture managed to:

-Become aware of the importance that influence of culture has on person’s behaviour and identity. -Recognize and be sensitive for differences that other cultures bring.
- Develop knowledge and competence in key concepts of intercultural learning and life long learning with young people.
-Acknowledge the Youth in Action Programme as a tool for intercultural learning and Youth work. -Be provided with information about existing possibilities and conditions for the development of international youth co-operation projects. -Reflect about the importance, possibilities and obstacles of cultural diversity when organizing international youth projects or other youth projects involving ethnic minorities.
- Exchange best practices among youth workers in working within multicultural environment.
-Develop tools, activities, strategies for improvement of youth work on local level focused on cultural diversity.
-Be supported to promote multiplying effect of youth work in local participation.
-Develop an informal network of youth workers and youth leaders between the EU partner countries.
-Identify common criteria and approaches for follow-up projects and initiatives developed on this training course.

Target group & international/intercultural composition of the group & team

Countries: Italy, Cyprus, Romania, Hungary, Slovenia, Portugal Number of young people involved: 27 participants , 4 trainers, 4 support staff Young people's profile.

(nationality, age, backgrounds):
The participants nationalities were from the partner countries. The participants were active youthworkers in the youth field. Some working as individuals as professionals and others as volunteers in youth organisations, local and international. The age span was from 21-65.

Training methods used & main activities

Structure of the training course

Specific feature of the training is that it consists of two parallel courses: Exploring Daily Activities and Activities using the Local Outdoor environment in one TC. Participants will be able to experience Captain Culture from any of the two, there will also be common sessions; sharing, evaluating and discussing your experiences.

• Exploring Daily Activities
Have you ever recognized funny things about other cultures during your travelling?
Did you discover that your friend from East Europe always wears pyjamas and you don’t?
Are you the one that is always late while your friends from the North are always waiting for you? Have you ever walked into a French toilet and didn’t know where to sit?

We will try and discover differences in daily day culture like food, clothes, time, music, dances, customs and ways of communicating with each other etc. In fact, all the other things that shape our every day life and have roots in our culture.

• Activities using the local Outdoor environment for exploring ICL
How do you connect a lake, a mountain and a forest with Intercultural Learning? Well, the same way you connect a hike in the mountain with the love of your life, or a canoe with the meeting of cultures!

We will explore how to use outdoor activities (ex. hike, orienteering, picnic, star gazing etc.) in intercultural learning – ICL. We will be focusing on communication, different aspects of culture (general, national, personal etc.), cultural clashes and intercultural projects.

In both groups participants will also develop their own tools for ICL.

Outcomes of the activity

During the project a final evaluation session was run on day 7 afternoon, and several monitoring tools have been used during all tc duration. The evaluation session used several methodologies (visual, verbal, written evaluation) and tried to offer participants the possibility to participants to express themselves about different aspects of the tc and also about future perspectives of cooperation and further projects after tc.
The evaluation was also an ongoing process which aimed to self learning. The reflection groups (smaller working groups) would work as a space for participants to evaluate their personal learning throughout the day. The tools given and discussions gave the opportunity for both self and group evaluation .
Moreover a final evaluation team meeting happened on the last day. It was an opportunity for trainers to discuss about the overall tc implementation and about feedback from participants taking into consideration also evaluation forms (see attachment). A report on the questionnaire given is attached and by reading it we could understand that the training had a real impact on the trainees. This has given us the push to go for another training enhancing the quality within it.
During the final evaluation meeting we also plan some further actions to support the real implementation of project ideas developed by participants during tc by offering support and advice of trainers in the future by distant communication . We discussed also about the future of Captain Culture as training and about possible future editions in other countries and about other cooperation possibilities between team members and participants.
Participants’ organization, colleagues, peers but also the young people participants are working daily together and will be benefited from this project because new tools, competences and skills that have been gained and used by participants in their own organizations/projects. Youth workers and leaders from different youth centers and youth organization in Lefkosia were also involved in the open activity of tool creation. In day 6 in the tools presentation which include educational tools on intercultural learning developed and tested for the first time by participants. It was a really important moment for the international group and local youth organizations to interact and learn from each other.

Your tasks and responsibilities within the team

As a trainer and part of a team i had a full time responsibility of the flow of the training. Sessions were equally divided and shared amongst the three trainers. The planning was reviewed every day and adjusted according to the needs of participants. Implementation and evaluation of the activities were in the everyday agenda. Being part of the host organization i also had the overall responsibility of the logistics of the training.

Team of trainers:
Rodrigo Vilarinho - Portugal
Milena Lazic - Serbia
Nina Arnus - Slovenia
Panayiotis Theodorou - Cyprus

I worked on this training for 8 days as a full time trainer.

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