A group of 15 young people coming from Malta, Romania and Italy met for a 4-day training course aimed at helping them in their involvement in youth work. During their daily life, these participants dedicate a number of hours every week to facilitate and organise activities in the youth groups they lead in their respective countries.
These young leaders, all leaders within the Catholic Action, constantly seek further training so that they can provide a better service to the young people.
This OWLS (Opportunities + Willingness + Learning = Success) training seminar taking place in Iasi, Romania between the 20th and 24th August, was the fifth and final part of a bigger project which was initiated in Italy in 2018 and continued in Malta earlier this year. This project is being financed by the Erasmus+ program of the European Union.
Upon arriving in Romania on Monday, these youths had some time to discover a small part of the country along with its heritage and culture.
Know each other
On Tuesday the participants introduced each other with the help of two fun name games. The first workshop was a continuation of getting to know each other, but on a much deeper level as they went back in time looking back to their roots and origins in the Catholic Action. Talking to each other they shared how they were influenced by other members of the Catholic Action during their growth and how they are influencing others who started their journey within the Association. They discovered that the most important thing in influencing others is taking care of them.
During the afternoon session, they reflected on the different youth groups that are present within the Catholic Action between the ages of 12 and 30, discussing the different actions and challenges typical to the respective groups. The day ended with the international evening, where the participants from different countries had the opportunity to exchange the different cuisines, dances, phrases and traditions.
On Wednesday, the group evaluated the previous day programme. The following session was about projects, youth exchanges and Erasmus+ programmes. Participants discovered the different opportunities available for youth. During one of the workshops they also discussed how the Catholic Action works in different countries and at different levels.
Creative fund raising
The fourth day began with a brainstarming session about the reasons why they give time, energy and money to collect money for their projects in different countries. The discussion helped them to become more concrete and creative in fundraising. In the afternoon they visited the city center of Iasi and then they joined the Catholic Church and celebrated the festivity of the Cathedral where the Bishop told them to “always be young people that show your faith through your smile”.
All the workshops delivered during this training course were a mixture of tools that can be used in their youth organizations. Before participating in OWLS, most of the participants did not have the knowledge about the different opportunities available for youth. The workshops and sessions helped them to increase their knowledge, which they can also spread back home with their youth.