Monthly Archive January 2019

ByBaptiste Roger

First steps with non formal education

When I arrived in Curba de Cultura I knew that because of my project I would have to go to schools to lead classes, propose activities and share knowledge with them in English and French classes; I had been told about non-formal education, we were only then in June and the school holidays had started, so I told myself “we will see later”.

And then, as the summer was over, we were very quickly back to school, and it was time for me to take my first steps in the different schools, not without apprehension! (I had never faced a class in this position before, I have already given tutoring in high schools as well as private language classes but in this way I must admit that I was not reassured…)

Fortunately we were not dropped in the “cage of wild animals” and we received in Curba de Cultura during 3 days, a very enriching, reassuring and funny training on what non-formal education is, non-formal communication, how to set it up and apply it, we received methods, advice and explanations. We put ourselves in situations and we tried each other in “almost” real conditions, (what a laugh that day, we all fell back into childhood!) We were finally ready to start this new activity as serenely as possible (thanks Kristina and Estelle for this training!!!)

Returning to the main theme of this article, non-formal education (which must be distinguished from informal education) can be defined in this way: it proposes a training and learning time designated as such, without this leading to a final validation in the form of an examination to evaluate what has been learned. This lack of a final evaluation corresponds to the state of mind in which it is carried out. It seeks to foster a spirit of initiative in the participant, who is placed on an equal footing with the learner. Autonomy, initiative, democracy, exchange: these are the key words of non-formal education, which proposes, in an open format, to learn things through mechanisms that allow the active participation of all, this can be for example through games, videos, debates, creative workshops, theatre etc.

So it was with all this new knowledge and especially with a lot of impatience that I was waiting for my first class in order to implement all this. The day D having arrived, my activity was ready and settled at the milimetre, stress and apprehension naturally appeared. Fortunately for me, Estelle was present and accompanied me in this brand new experience. Strangely enough, I immediately felt comfortable in this position, in sharing, in feeling that the students were having a good time and that I was too. I knew right away that I would like it a lot. Of course it took me a few weeks to be totally liberated and each new class was and still is a great experience to correct, improve and learn about how to implement non-formal education.

Today, 3 and a half months after my first experience, I had the opportunity to participate in about forty classes with students ranging from the first grade to the twelfth grade (from the first kindergarten class to the last high school class)

We played many games together, sang, drew, watched videos, answered quizzes, tested our memory and concentration, jumped and turned on ourselves… but we also learned many things about cultures, languages, differences, cultural shock, diversity… but above all we had a great time! And it seems to me that this is one of the essential things when you want to transmit knowledge, know-how or even interpersonal skills.

I am happy to have been able to explore and practice this form of education during my volunteer work, which has taught me and brought me a lot of knowledge as much as it has on a personal level and I am now sure that I want to continue and deepen my learning in this way.

/ Traducere in Romana in lucru/

BySorin Berbecar

Call for a Swedish volunteer

Curba de Cultură is looking for 1 Swedish volunteer for an EVS volunteering stage in Izvoarele, a nice and cozy Romanian village. Together with our partner Navigatorcentrum (Ostersunds Kommun), we are developing and implementing an EVS for Swedish youngsters who would like to do this service in Romania, starting from spring 2019.

The profile of the volunteer we are looking for:

  • motivation to live and work in rural area for several months (the total length will be decided together with the organizations)
  • motivation to work with youngsters and children
  • basic knowledge of English

The activities we propose:

  • promoting non-formal learning and volunteering through presentations and activities
  • non-formal learning activities with children in schools and with youngsters in the youth centre
  • organizing outdoor cinema nights
  • managing the library within the youth centre
  • organizing foreign language classes and cultural events
  • writing articles and blogposts
  • creating promotional materials for the area/ community (photos, videos etc) and taking care of the webpage of the commune
  • reporting and documenting activities

The support we offer:

  • accommodation in a traditional Romanian house
  • pocket money and budget for food
  • phone sim card and monthly credit for it
  • bus permits for local transport
  • international travel costs up to 275 EUR reimbursed in the end of the stay
  • Romanian language classes through OLS system
  • mentor support for personal development
  • coordinator support for implementing activities
  • medical insurance through Cigna Insurrance Plan
  • Youthpass certificate
  • two international trainings provided by the Romanian National Agency
  • internal training for nonformal education methods and communication techniques (and other training if required/ available)
  • smiles and hugs

Other details about the project:

Curba de Cultură focuses on teenagers and youth development. Our mission is to use non-formal education as a complementary method to the formal educational system for young people. We want to create the premises for a better development of the young people and their more suited integration within their respective communities. We want to make young people aware that they actively belong to their local and national culture.

Navigatorcentrum is an organisation for young people aged 16-25 in Östersunds municipality, organised under the Municipality Administration, development/growth area. It is a meeting place where young people can have a coffee, use a computer or have a meeting with a coach. The main tasks is to find, meet and coach young people en route into adult life, with a particular focus on those who need extra support to find their way. To clarify; unemployed youth and a special focus is kept on long-term unemployed youth, youth receiving social service, immigrant/refugee-youth, disadvantaged youth, youth not in the school-system but also youth in general thinking about their future. All young people get a personal coach that give support through programs of introduction to a working life, various motivation-actions and guidance-counselling.

Length of stage: Several months (to be decided together with Navigatorcentrum and Curba de Cultură)

Location: Izvoarele, Prahova County, Romania (the historical region of Walachia)

Sending/Coordinating organization: Navigatorcentrum

Hosting Organization: Curba de Cultură

If we caught your attention send us a CV and motivation letter at ASAP

Also if you want to know more do not hesitate to ask using the same e-mail.


P.S. Explore this webpage to find out more about the community, the work and the volunteers we host.