PAT meetings in Estonia

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I guess you are wondering what this is all about. Well first of all, let me explain the meaning of the abbreviation PAT – it means Pedagogical Adaptation Team.

Now most of you know what Coloured Glasses Workshops are. But, as a part of CGrow project, YFU has got funds to contribute to a reflection on expanding Intercultural Education and to think about how the Coloured Glasses Workshops can be better adapted to today’s intercultural societies.

Before, Coloured Glasses Workshops were addressed to young people in schools or universities. But now this perspective has expanded and YFU is addressing the workshops also to teachers and youth workers, as they have more impact on the young generation and interculturalism can therefore become more effective.

To do this, a number of YFU ‘ambassadors’ from several European countries and YEU representatives have been named to assist three meetings in Estonia, the host country.

There is Gunilla from Sweden, Johanna from Germany, Brias (YEU network) from Galicia and Kirsten and Loïc from France and of course, the staff dispatched for this project from the YFU Estonian office – Airika, Sandra and Terje who is head of project.

I cannot begin to tell you the excitement of being chosen to participate in such a huge European project.

Flying to Estonia in June for the first time, meeting all the other group members and spending an intensive weekend of reflection of exactly what we want, where we want to go and how to do this… Thanks to everybody’s expertise and pre-work assignments, we achieved a lot more than we would have thought! Rich of this first experience, everyone went back home to their own country in order to continue to carry out whatever tasks they had been entrusted with.

Second meeting was held in October, on a lovely first snow weekend. What joy to see the whole group united again and to continue to be even more effective around the meeting table for one and a half day and to be able to say – hey, this is finally taking on the shape we hoped for: working on how to make the tasks of leading workshops easier for our facilitators!

Deadline is coming up. Workshops have been implemented in December and January so last meeting is scheduled in February. Temperatures in Estonia are supposed to be -20 at that time of year! Luckily, the great working atmosphere in the Tallinn YFU Head office will be as warm and welcoming as ever and the group will be able to finalise this project to the expectations of all involved.

Written by Kirsten David, representative of YFU France