Report from the second ASA seminar is online!
From June 10 to 15, 2014, the second ASA seminar took place in Werftphul near Berlin in the seminar house "Kurt Löwenstein". For the second time, around 60 participants from Germany and various African countries came together. This seminar, called "Africangroup," was specifically for participants who will complete all of their projects in African countries and for the African participants who are in Germany. During the five days of the seminar, there was ample opportunity to exchange ideas about the various projects and how far the various projects have come with the planning so far. After arriving on the first day on April 10, a "welcome meeting" was held. It started with some small games to create a nice atmosphere. Then the daily schedule for the following days was presented.
The ASA seminar usually began at 9 a.m. with a plenary session attended by all participants. Each day began with a different theme. One morning, for example, was about gender and sexism. Therefore, former ASA participants came to give an introduction and definitions of the different parts of this main topic. Later, various workshops were offered on the topic. All workshops included different types of (would omit the different ways) "learning methods." One workshop was based on the theater technique "Living Pictures" and gave women the opportunity to show situations in which they felt they were treated wrongly because of their gender. Another, which was gender mixed, provided an opportunity to discuss their own experiences in life where gender influenced situations or decisions. One of the highlights of this seminar was the theater "Asylum Monologues" on Friday evening. The actors presented monologues by refugees, based on interviews they had conducted beforehand. These were the true stories of refugees who came to Germany from different countries and for different reasons. They showed their experience in their difficult attempt to get a residence permit for Germany. It was a really touching performance for everyone and led to many questions and discussions right afterwards. So I thank ASA and the actors of "Asylum Monologues" for giving us the opportunity to see such an amazing opportunity to take a closer look at the lives of refugees here in Germany.
There were also sessions divided into tutor groups of up to about 10 people. The group with the HITA participants was the smallest group. Therefore, we joined two other tutor groups, a North-South group and a group with BASIC ASA participants. During these tutorial groups with our tutor Tilman we had time to discuss topics of our own project and also to get to know the projects of the others. This was a great opportunity to share experiences with the projects and also to see if there are the same challenges and how others are dealing with them. In addition, the topics of the morning plenary sessions were discussed in detail. On Friday, the "Participants' Day" took place all day. It gave participants the opportunity to create workshops that interest them or in which they have experience or specialized knowledge. There were many different workshops on all kinds of topics, for example on "prejudice" or tropical diseases, but also skateboarding or painting clothes. Everyone was free to choose the workshop, he wanted and as many he wanted. On Sunday around noon the seminar officially ended. It was a strange feeling to say goodbye to everyone, knowing that you won't see most of them again. The final ASA seminar will be held on two different days in either January or March 2015. All participants also from the other country groups (Latin America, Asia...) will attend this seminar. Link to the Report in archive