From the 4th to 11th of August 2022, eighteen of us from more than ten European countries gathered at the permaculture farm Veles in Svinjsko, Slovenia. Thanks to the Erasmus+ program, Yes To Sustainability network, Kmetija Veles as the hosting venue and our sending organizations, the project Leader in me 3.0 fulfilled its aim to support each of us in becoming a leader.
During the whole process, we felt highly motivated and supported by the amazing trainers, cared for by the kitchen team and welcomed by the hosts. A big thank you and an even bigger hug to all of them!
Throughout these eight days, we were exploring various methods and tools of non-formal education and had a chance to dive deeper into ourselves to strengthen and empower our inner leaders and to understand and learn how to work with our inner critics. We discussed examples of toxic and sustainable leadership, practised non-violent communication and gained a lot of knowledge about the role of a good leader in different situations. We felt safe, supported and strong enough to also step out of the comfort zone and explore places of our discomfort.
During the training, we all together created an open space for a variety of activities and for meeting both individual and group needs. We celebrated our time with games, role-play and improvisation, live music, creative and artistic expression, storytelling, expressing through body and voice. We tried out individual and group work, fishbowl and plenty of other techniques and strategies that might be useful for a leader. We also supported the hosting farm with some community work and by taking care of our dishes, saving water and helping in the field and kitchen. Towards the end of the training, each of us co-facilitated a team-designed workshop held for a number of other participants. There we also tried out giving feedback both in the roles of an outside observer or of an active participant. We formed a safe space to explore, make mistakes and learn from them, and thanks to all of this, we improved our competencies and abilities as leaders.
Thanks to all participants, solid connections and ideas for future projects and collaborations were born here @kmetijaVeles.
We are deeply grateful to our trainers Petra, Marina and Jošt, who helped us plant new seeds, and we can’t wait to see all the beautiful individual trees flowering and bearing fruits!