Welcome to the latest update report from Encompass.
Our March 2013 Journey of Understanding was full of challenging outdoor adventure activities and facilitated workshops tackling tough issues such as: religion, culture, and ideology. From youth council members from Fight for Peace in Woolwich, London to youth leaders in Indonesia, there was no doubt that we had a good group of young adults who were all willing to make positive changes within their communities.
The activities took place at the Plas Gwynant Outdoor Education Centre in Snowdonia National Park, Wales. Activities included gorge walking, canoeing, exploring an old slate mine and climbing Mount Snowdon. Many
of the outdoor activities the youth participated in challenged them mentally and physically, and lead to a greater sense of unity amongst cultures and communities.
The weather in Wales at this time was terrible and heavy snow blocked some roads. However, this didn't stop the Journey of Understanding!
As the week went on, we hosted workshops geared toward breaking down stereotypes and barriers between cultures, religions, and ideologies. One of the facilitated discussions, coordinated by the young leaders working together in groups as a team, covered wide-ranging topics such as nationalities, refugees, euthanasia, evolution and even plastic surgery – everyone wanted to voice their opinions.
“It was interesting, inspiring and mind-opening. The fact that I met so many people, some whom I share a lot
with, and some whom I share almost nothing with, made me think about my life, my world and my views. Now I hope to learn more about the world and to think about how I can use what I learnt here to impact others.” Natalie, Israel
“I learnt that I have to be more open minded. My tiny little box which is warm and comfortable is not suitable for me anymore. There is a lot to discuss and to be done in society... I learnt to appreciate people as human beings beyond their religion, nationality, political view and race.” Vania, Indonesia
On the return to London, participants remained in the UK and took part in a series of Encompass activities: visiting one of our partners, Active Change Foundation in Walthamstow; working with children at Salmon Youth Centre
in Bermondsey and facilitating a couple of workshops at a fundraising event in London’s West End.
The programme ended with 24 young, confident emerging community leaders saying tearful goodbyes to their new family.
“I feel like I’ve made some lifelong friends from around the world and I’m also more aware of other
cultures across the world.
With my new-found experience and being a youth worker, I can teach the next generation about being open-minded and the consequences of being ignorant and intolerant. The Encompass Trust Journey of Understanding has been just that for me – a journey of understanding.” Nicole, UK
The Journey of Understanding was a huge success and once again, we thank you for your continued support.
The Encompass Team