[This is an Emi post]
I have just returned from the Regional Training Forum in Czech Republic, and am now back in the office. The deal if I was going was that I had to write a blog post about it, so here it is.
First of all, what is an RTF and what is TTT?
An RTF is a relatively short (about 3.5 days) and very intense forum where a bunch of trainings are run in parallel. Some prepare you for camps, some for risk management, chapter development, and the one I attended was Train The Trainer.
TTT prepares you to be a trainer. This means you learn about different methods, about facilitating, CISV's educational methods and direction, all that in 3.5 days.
So instead of writing the detail of every single day at RTF, it might be more interesting to tell what one can expect or should be ready for when signing up to a TTT, from my perspective.
First of all, have a goal. Not necessarily know that you will have this or that specific training position when you go home, but know why you are going. This will help you make sense of all the information and experience you will get. For example, I want to stay involved in JB and help where I can, that might mean facilitate activities or train other JBers. I could also help train JCs or Seminar participants in Norway. Finally, I am going to study Youth Work and Community Development, and there is an emphasis on non-formal learning.
With all of this in mind, I managed to related most of the things I learned at TTT to one of this future goals.
Secondly, if you have previous experience, be ready to try to "forget it" during sessions, then relate what you've just done to what you already knew. This helps you keep an open mind and welcome new ideas and methods, whilst making the most of the experience you had previously gained. In my case, my years of involvement in Junior Branch had already taught me and prepared me for a lot of things, but I tried to put that aside during the training sessions. After each session, I realised how I could relate it to something I had learned in JB but also how much TTT was adding to my existing experience. One should never stop learning!
Finally, and most importantly, know yourself well enough to balance socialising and sleep! This is applicable to any CISV event, but because RTFs are so short and TTT so intense, they drain the energy out of you. And while socialising is a very important part of RTF because it gives you the chance to relax, know your co-trainees but also to exchange best practices and ideas, don't let the FOMO (fear of missing out) get the best out of you 😉
There's a lot more to be said about what to expect, but everything should keep a part of mystery.
TTT was an eye-opening experience, the amount of things I learned in these few days is completely overwhelming, and I cannot wait to apply it all!
A huge thank you to Freya Line and Karo, our trainers, as well as to my fellow trainees (or should I say trainers now that we are certified), and everyone else who made the RTF such a great few days!