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Picturing the Global South: The Power behind Good Intentions
Date du début: 3 août 2015, Date de fin: 2 avr. 2016 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

The intercultural seminar „Picturing the Global South: The Power behind Good Intentions“ from November 14th to November 21st 2015 hosted 24 participants from 9 European countries in Vienna, Austria. It was organized by SCI Austria and the SCI Pool of Trainers and Facilitators. They used non-formal education methods to facilitate the sharing, learning and networking process of these active members of partner organisations, on whose needs and requests the program and objectives of the project were based. Starting from a common understanding within the SCI network, which manages an international volunteer exchange, that volunteers participating in projects in the Global South should be well-prepared for their experience, the network decided to create this seminar to improve the preparation process. To learn also from other networks and to inspire also them to grow and improve other NGOs working in the volunteer exchange field or in the field of critical global education were invited to participate. Together looked at and critically questioned the motivation/ good intentions that young people have for volunteering in Africa, Latin America or Asia. We looked at power relations, history and current international cooperation which constitute the context and background of the decision to “help” abroad. Furthermore had a look at the concepts of development, Global South and Global North and how stereotypes, racism and exotism influence the motivation and the impact of the volunteer projects. By doing this we created a reflection process among the participants in the seminar and the volunteers they train, raising awareness and creating clearer and more realistic ideas of the volunteer receiving regions and the projects. All participants had the chance to share the tools, methods and approaches they use in the preparation of volunteers, inspiring each other to improve the predeparture trainings. The seminar produced a tools collection based on this exchange to support participants and their organisations a well as other organisations doing similar work. In a public discussion event, the seminar addressed the issue locally in Vienna. Through the direct online cooperation with partner organisations in Latin America, Asia and Africa during the seminar a collection of more specific countrypreparations was made possible and included in the publication. Through the improvement of the work of the sending organisations the volunteers will receive a better and more reflective preparation leading to a more fruitful intercultural learning experience, as a consequence having a better impact with their volunteering projects and leading to a more understanding approach to the complex issues when volunteering in the Global South.



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