On Thursday morning the group started to think about projects they could carry out in South Africa at the end of their Pathways Training journey. They were divided into groups and asked to consider what they would like to achieve, who the project would be for and approximate costs before going before a panel of youth work experts to explain their ideas.
Entering the Dragons’ Den
Celia, Sandra and Steve from the training team were joined by Bram, a Dutch sports and youth work professional, to form the Dragon’s Den judging panel. Each of the judges gave an introduction explaining a little about their background and areas of specialist expertise.
At the end of the preparation time the groups were asked to present their ideas to the Dragons who each gave their feedback. The project ideas included everything from arts and music showcases to sports plus much more besides. Some of the groups also thought about holding fundraising events in advance of the project to encourage people in there local areas to put funding in to help make the ideas a reality.
At the end of the pitches all of the groups were able to give points to their favourite projects in order to find a winner. Following this everyone came back together as a big group to discuss the positives and negatives of each idea. Several members of the group noted that instead of pitching their ideas to Dragons from the UK and Netherlands it would be a good idea to test ideas with youth work professionals from South Africa – this would help to establish what the needs are that the group could meet.
The group discussed whether the project should be one that is for people in South Africa or with them, meeting our needs or their needs, whether it should be with youth workers or young people. All the participants agreed that it should be a project which is not based on assumptions about the country but rather informed by people who have knowledge of what is useful or helpful.
They also considered whether a study visit might be the preferred option for the South Africa trip instead of delivery of a project and that this could be an opportunity to exchange youth work skills and knowledge.
Creating a Pathways Learning Blog
In the afternoon Buzz reminded the group of the four accreditation routes that the participants would each be receiving throughout their Pathways Training journey; YouthPass, Council of Europe Youth Work Portfolio, Effective Youth Leadership Badges and the Platinum Youth Achievement Award. He explained to the participants the different criteria which would need to be met and what evidence should be collected in order to meet them.
After this Duncan gave a short input on different blogging platforms which the participants were encouraged to use to write reflectively about their learning in order to develop a portfolio of evidence for the accreditation. Participants were provided with a quick start guide to blogging with recommendations for different platforms.
After this the participants had some time to go and set up their Pathways Learning Blogs and write their first entry with learning from either the induction week or the last couple of days which links to one of the criteria.