At the end of yesterday the participants came back together for their second check point to share their discussions with the wider group. Further ideas had developed since the first check point with some groups having firmer outcomes from their discussions.
Naming the network
The communications and marketing group had created a number of suggestions for the name for the network. They shared their first thoughts with the group and asked for other ideas from the wider group. The shortlist of names included…
- IYWT (International Youth Work Trainers)
- Fortuna Network (Named after the boat that the group is staying on)
- TNT14 (Trainers Network for Trainers)
- Carrot (Community of Active Responsible Reliable Optimistic Trainers)
The group agreed that they would ask the wider group and the virtual group for more thoughts on the name of the network and voting to decide would take place today.
Communications and marketing
The group had worked further on the definition and had two final statements that were agreed to define who ‘we’ are and what we do.
Who ‘we’ are…
An independent supportive community of trainers in the youth work sector that advocates on behalf of and contributes to each other’s professional development.
What we do…
Members aim to ensure defined quality standards in delivery of training activities. The network endeavors to have a positive impact on Youth Policy and non-formal education as part of life-long learning at all levels within Europe and neighboring regions. It will do this by communicating recommendations to decision makers and advocating on behalf of its members.
They had also done some stakeholder mapping to establish who needs to communicated to both internally and externally. There was a lot of discussion about the consultation process following on from this week’s session in Budapest. It was agreed by the wider group after the discussion that after decisions have been made here thee should be some targeted consultation with specific stakeholders and participants from the Ireland session.
Membership & values
The membership had worked a lot on the process for becoming a member and lots of discussion had taken place on how to balance the need for quality and transparency, plus keep the process practical. The group had formed two levels to the membership process…
- Entry level / joining the network – there should be a short questionnaire completed by new members which would be based on the members passion pledge. This would be a self assessment in which you share your learning pathway to how you became a trainer and would ask for two references related to trainings that have been delivered.
- Maintenance level / continuous development – all members should take part in a 360 assessment with a trio of peers. This would take place either at the annual meeting of the network or virtually if the member cannot attend in person. The 360 assessment would be designed to promote quality and encourage professional development. The group were not yet clear on what would happen if someone didn’t meet the criteria.
It was stressed by the membership group that the levels and assessment system were designed to encourage professional development and learning rather than to be intrusive. Members should join with this in mind and this would signal their commitment to challenge their practise and be challenged by others. The group felt it was important that the system is open and progressive, supporting people’s learning processes.
It was proposed by the membership group that the process for membership should be refined and all participants in the Budapest and Ireland meetings should go through the process. This would give an opportunity to test and refine the membership process and ensure quality for the formation of the network.
The group had decided that a core group was necessary but that it should not be made up of members from sub groups and rather by focused on keeping the network moving and not being distracted by specific theme specific tasks. The group proposed that the core group be made up of seven members who are rotated on a regular (annually and bi-annually), there would also be the possibility to have external experts who can be consulted at special meetings. In addition to this there was a suggestion that two external experts should be engaged to act as critical friend to the core group.
Sub groups should be able to be formed as required and will be driven by need or want to investigate a particular topic or area of work. Members have the option to form a sub group if they have a passion for something in particular, they can propose it to the network and see if other members are interested, giving the chance to create grassroots initiatives from within.
The group had also created an extensive task list for the core group to complete in order to form the network. This was divided into sections and would need to delegate to sub groups as appropriate to avoid becoming overloaded. The core group should be formed before the end of the Budapest sessions and should bear in mind what has gone before in Ireland and try to keep the expertise already available.
Events and activities
The group had been working in consultation with the sustainability, communication and structure team groups throughout the process. They felt that there should be a meeting for the core group and an annual meeting or assembly next year, this would require thought to be given to funding these activities.
In addition to this there could be two specific trainings next year on particular topics, these would not be the responsibility of the core group to organise but may be handled by a sub group. Again there will need to be grants sourced to fund these activities and it is not essential that these take place.
There were also a number of questions which still need to be answered around the events and activities programme for the network. These discussions would carry on tomorrow and would bear in mind the results of the short questionnaire created by this group to consult on the events and activities programme.
The sustainability group felt that there were a number of immediate priorities which need to be covered including opening a bank account, creating a list of funding which could be sought, Crowdfunding internally and creation of the website. The group suggested that everyone here in Budapest could donate 10 Euros to the network to put some cash in the pot initially which could be used for things such as creating the website.
The group shared a draft strategy for grants including the two key actions from Erasmus+. These would need applications to be submitted in early 2015 so work would need to begin on these soon. Council of Europe and European Youth Foundation may also have funds which could support the network. Additionally there should be a list of other foundations who may have funds which could be applied for.
There was also a suggestion that there could be participation fees for trainings or meetings, or alternatively a contribution towards travel costs. The wider group did feel strongly that cost should not exclude anyone so there was a discussion about voluntary contributions to participate. It was clear that further discussion around this would be required to reach consensus.
Feed in your views
As always the group here in Budapest are keen to hear from the wider virtual group so please comment with your views or post in the Facebook group.