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🎖️Insights from Critical Youth Work (Non)Conference in Weimar

From May 12th to 17th, 2024, INEDNET represented by our staff member, graphic designer and youth worker Inesa Shahazizyan was part of the "Critical Youth Work" conference at the Europäische Jugendbildungs und Jugendbegegnungsstätte Weimar (EJBW) in Weimar, Germany.

This six-day non-conference renewed the sense of purpose and deepened the understanding of the current challenges facing democratic civil society and youth work.

One of the most striking aspects was the multi-perspective mash-up format. Participants were encouraged to choose their journey through the event, selecting sessions and workshops that resonated most with their interests and professional needs. This approach gave a sense of ownership and active participation, allowing them to deeply engage with the content. 

The workshops and discussion groups were highly impactful, focusing not on traditional lecturing but on reflection, rethinking, conceptual pausing, and learning from each other in a supportive environment. It emphasized active engagement and critical reflection over passive listening. The workshops covered diverse yet useful topics, from a participatory workshop on facilitating a "Story Circle" to the "Crisis of Liberal Democracy", from "Youth Work in Wartime" to a "Modern Dance Workshop", discovering new ways to express ourselves through movement and art.

Despite coming from different countries and backgrounds, participants were united by a common goal: to enhance democratic education and youth work in their respective contexts.

The connections formed during this conference will undoubtedly continue to support and inspire us in our ongoing efforts.

The insights gained and the strategies discussed will greatly inform our work in the future. This conference was a powerful reminder of the importance of coming together, thinking critically, and working collaboratively to create a more equitable world.

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