Qassem, participant of the e-VELP training
I am Qassem Alhomayyer, 23 years old. I was born in Damascus, the capital city of Syria. I came to Germany as a refugee in 2015. It took me about 18 months to learn German and be able to speak it fluently. I want to study Social Work and that's why I work in informal (mostly political) education.
I found out about e-VELP from a friend of mine who works at Start with a Friend (SwaF). I decided to join this project because I want to exchange with people from different countries and backgrounds. I want to learn more about how to design a workshop and how to do it properly. And I actually wish via e-VELP to be able to travel in Europe and give my own workshop(s) and be able to discuss important topics, share my experiences and learn from participants.
Although I am still at the start of my program, I have already learned a lot of important things about designing a workshop, getting to know myself as a learner, setting the right goals and so on.
The most exciting part of the program for me is the part about knowing which kind of learner I am because this will not just help me in doing my workshops, but also in every aspect of my life.
My workshop will be about gender roles in society that concern men who live in Germany or other countries and have a different background. As a person that belongs to this group, I will be able to share my experiences, learn from their experiences, discuss gender roles, and hopefully get a step closer to gender equality. I would definitely recommend e-VELP. I have already been recommending it to my friends, many of whom know about it now and maybe they will participate in the next program.
Miganoush, trainer e-VELP as well as CEO & co-founder of TeachSurfing
This year TeachSurfing accomplished an important milestone: we launched our e-VELP program, a university accredited online course for young migrants and refugees. e-VELP aims to train young migrants and refugees, to help them tap into their talents, share their knowledge and culture.
The online learning program started on the 17th of November with an onboarding event which included participants from several different countries. This year we had overall 24 participants from 4 countries: 13 Volunteer Educators (VEs) motivated to learn and offer workshops and 11 Volunteer Educator trainers (VE-Trainers), who are more experienced trainers assisting VEs in their journey.
“The online training is going very well, the VEs and VE-Trainers are working through course content, including reading, taking quizzes and conducting individual or group activities. We created weekly workgroups both for VEs and VE-Trainers through which the learners can raise their questions and support each other in their learning journey. I was impressed that the volunteer educators got so engaged with the course content and they gave positive feedback.
An exciting aspect of the e-VELP program is its international context. Learners across 4 countries meet, exchange, and learn about each other's culture and background. It's very fulfilling to see we already achieve our goal in the process of training VEs: we bridge the cultural gap through knowledge exchange and personal contacts."
Good news! Stay tuned for next year because we are broadening our project! Once we improve our content, we aim to publish the course so that it can be available to everyone in the TeachSurfing community. Right now, we just wanted to focus on migrants and refugees and give them the platform to share their knowledge, stories, and cultural background.