A peek inside UNHABITAT training for Urban Youth Fund Grantees in Cairo

Hello from Cairo!  I’ve just finished day 2 of 6 days of training for the UN.  I’m revamping the UN LEL series curriculum for a youth audience & the training participants, from around the world, are participating in a gap & asset assessment to examine how youth can better engage with local leaders.  I’m also training them in snippets of the manual to see how it resonates with a youth audience.

Two participants agreed to write a guest post about their experience so far.  Here are their reflections in their words…

From Hemant Pathak of Nepal (that’s him on the left above):

I feel intrigued to sit between participants from Africa, Asia and Melansia in the project management training programme, FINALLY! Anticipated with much enthusiasm casted with partial shadow of nimbus cloud in our minds about the security situation and the recent incident in the city had doubts participating, but HERE WE ARE; in the capital city of “OM EL DONIA”, Cairo.  Diverse youth participants outshine the beauty of the training feeling pity for the trainers to gather together the social, cultural and language background to make them understand, a humungous task and effort, how the hell are you doing it??? HATS OFF!!

I feel really enthralled to be part of the content; can be AN ORDEAL, really? Why not when is it the first time? Bewildered when the jet took off directly to risk management, itching my head scalp initially, but got re-connected with the topic, all THANKS to the special guest [Shelby Edwards, who skyped in] all the way from U.S.A who provided valuable feedback to our apprehensive questions.

While putting a piece of toast and cheese with apple juice and baked beans for breakfast, I could see friends with crouch faces and rather wearisome about something, hmmm… cannot be a jet lag; was second day; scooted off with understanding stakeholders relationship and negotiating with them, the importance of it.

Now whenever I have problems, or I have to negotiate, the guide is really handy (don’t wanna be the fence sitters- can trouble others) [fence sitters are a type of negotiator with low trust & undetermined levels of agreement] but not possible without the communication ladder for the final action [the communication ladder refers to the 6 steps we quickly make when communicating, resting actions upon assumptions & possibly mistaken beliefs].

Talking about communication, I was just thinking, I have chatted with every friends about their country as I am much aware of the situation and history not with friends from Liberia, Kyrgyzstan, Ghana, Armenia with very limited knowledge only their geographic presence and of course Pakistan and Gambia friends who will be with us from tomorrow, fervent to meet them. HOLD ON!

How can I forget the video interview [participants are being interviewed for a UNHABITAT video], super excited to be filmed, WANNA GO GLOBAL…..

Guest post from Tilksew Andargie Kelemu, from Ethiopia (he’s on the right above):

A very diverse group of 23 youth project grantees of the UNHABITAT Urban youth fund 2011 are gathered in Cairo for 6 days of training.  The trainees, from Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, are learning about project management and engaging with locally elected leaders.

Two days into the training, important lessons & experiences have been gained on the areas of project risk management, logical framework analysis (evaluation), stakeholder analysis tools, gaps and assets regarding engagement with locally elected leaders and communication skills training.

High profile risk management expert Shelby Edwards spoke about managing risk.  Through the magic Skype, speaking from Seattle, Shelby answered participants’ questions.

Participants have been sharing experiences between themselves during & after training sessions.  The young project grantees have so far been participating actively with the vibrant group of trainers constituted by Melanda Schmid, Lee-Anne Ragan, Jon Andreas Solberg & Hanna Hasselqvist.


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