By Andrew Steel
Erasmus + – Malta October 2017
My favourite international JCI experience was in October 2017 when I applied for a place on the Erasmus + Pushing boundaries project in partnership with JCI Malta.
Myself and 5 others from JCI UK along with 24 other members across Europe went to Malta for 5 days to have training around direct and indirect discrimination and to see how people fleeing from Syria and the refugee crisis is seen and handled.
The whole experience with all the other members was an opportunity to get to know people of different cultures, from different backgrounds and who have their own different life skills and experiences. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know all of them and engaging in the activities that made me stop think about how people are discriminated against and the impact of it.
At the time I was in my first year of active JCI membership and the training really helped to build my passion for JCI and to develop as a person as I was very shy to speak to new people, especially to those where English is not their first language.
Throughout our time in Malta we were staying in the same building, eating together, training together and socialising in the evening. It was intense but in the best possible way as it meant that we all grew close to each other as the week went on.
The training itself was provided by Erasmus + trainers who were fantastic. They really engaged the groups and gave us tasks that became focal points for the day. No question was a silly question and I felt confident in asking anything that came to mind. By the second day, we were all excited about what the trainers were going to cover.
Each evening JCI Malta had prepared socialising activities such as a cultural visit around Malta, to dining together in a restaurant. We attended a speech from the president of Malta which was very interesting and engaging. We had a tour of the city and this gave everyone the opportunity to explore and see the country of Malta.
I had met the members of JCI Malta prior to the trip but it was great to feel so welcomed by the members of their chapter and to build upon our JCI international friendship.
An opportunity like this is not to be missed by anyone and any project funded by Erasmus + should be taken as it is a chance to go outside of your comfort zones to grow and develop personally as well as professionally. I still look back fondly on my time in Malta and count that week of training as one of the best weeks and most fun international JCI event to date.
That training trip inspired me in my preparation for my time as Local President of the Southampton UK chamber for 2018, I took the skills I developed in that week and implemented them into my chamber back home to provided similar learning opportunities to the members of JCI Southampton.
Categorised in: International
This post was written by Zoe Toseland