Anna Lindh Forum: What I made of it

President Nasheed receives the Anna Lindh Priz...
Image by Presidency Maldives via Flickr

So its been over a week since I arrived home from the Anna Lindh Forum and I have spent most of the time since I came home cathcing up with college and work. It dose not feel like I got home over a week ago!

I really enjoyed the experience of the Forum. I learned lots and made lots of connections. I got to know the other members of the Irish Network of Anna Lindh, of which I am now a member! So expect blog posts about the Irish Network.

I did have some criticisms about how the forum operated. Especially in the Agora sessions, but I was delighted in the closing ceremony to hear so many recommendations from the various sessions.

The Forum did change my outlook on art and music bringing people together, well the music bit anyway! (See the video from the concert)

The Forum in my mind was a success. It was great to work with the web and press team of the Anna Lindh Foundation in running the blog and there was a great sense of solidarity.

I learned loads from the other particpants and those who presented at the Forum. Hopefully contacts made at the Forum will lead to more projects, more changes, and more inprovements for people and society across the Euromed!

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Its All Gone Quiet….

Little things seem nothing, but they give peac...
Image by Martha★ via Flickr

So I arrive in Barcelona and the blogging goes quiet…. Whats the deal you ask?

Well Anna Lindh Foundation have set up a group blog where a bunch of us are blogging our experiences at the Forum. There are some cracking blog posts over there so do check it out.

Tonight I met with some of the members of the Irish Network of Anna Lindh and I hope to get to know them better back in Ireland and get working with them a bit as well as with the Foundation.

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ALF Forum Opening Session Liveblog

Liveblog here

Transcript below

  • 11:41 AM: Stephen Spillane good evening from the plenary hall in the CCIB in Barcelona at #forum2010
  • 11:41 AM: alvaromillan Ya en el Forum, todo listo para empezar el #forum2010 de la Fundación Anna Lindh aquí en Barcelona http://twitpic.com/16kbrh
  • 11:41 AM: adshill RT @annalindh: If you are at ALF Forum and you are interested in live bloging from here, please come at 19.00 to the press room (room 118) #forum2010
  • 11:41 AM: alvaromillan
  • 11:41 AM: AnnaLindh If you are at ALF Forum and you are interested in live bloging from here, please come at 19.00 to the press room (room 118) #forum2010
  • 11:47 AM: etharkamal Almost time for the inauguration… Butterflies #forum2010
  • 11:50 AM: Stephen Spillane live blog for #forum2010 availible here is.gd Its unofficial! taking in all the tweets! feel free to comment on it @AnnaLindh
  • 11:53 AM: creainnova GBM prepara EXA Forum2010: url4.eu
  • 11:58 AM: Stephen Spillane sitting waiting to hear from lots of important people like the EC Commissioner Fule #forum2010
  • 12:00 PM: Stephen Spillane I dont think my battery will last the full ceremony. But I will leave it running, so do comment and tweet. I will try and set one up for each day!!
  • 12:28 PM: midhal at #forum2010 waiting for the official start
  • 12:28 PM: Stephen Spillane ok, the important people are here, still waiting for the start….
  • 12:29 PM: Stephen Spillane Lots of photos of Stefan Fule, the European Commissioner responsible for enlargement
  • 12:31 PM: Stephen Spillane wahey!! we are off! 🙂
  • 12:31 PM: Stephen Spillane Spanish Minister for Foreign Affairs starts us off
  • 12:31 PM: Stephen Spillane lots of thanks
  • 12:32 PM: midhal official opening of ALF #forum2010
  • 12:39 PM: alvaromillan Habla Miguel Ángel Moratinos en la inauguración del Anna Lindh #forum2010 , cn Sampaio, Stefan Füle o Montilla twitpic.com
  • 12:39 PM: alvaromillan
  • 12:40 PM: midhal about 1000 participants at ALF forum. Working towards peace, cooperation – president of ALF #forum2010
  • 12:43 PM: AnnaLindh Inauguration of ALF Forum: It is up to us to build a new future in the Mediterranen, Morantinos #forum2010
  • 12:44 PM: AnnaLindh It needs to be a collective action, that’s why I’m so happy to see all this people in this room, Morantinos #forum2010
  • 12:46 PM: AnnaLindh Azoulay: you got here something that didn’t happened before, the civil society of 43 countries all together #forum2010
  • 12:46 PM: midhal about 1000 participants at ALF forum. Working towards peace, cooperation – Spanish foreign affairs minister #forum2010
  • 12:46 PM: adshill #forum2010 has begun! Andre Azoulay has just begun opening the event. 900 representatives from 39 countries! twitpic.com
  • 12:46 PM: adshill
  • 12:46 PM: AnnaLindh Azoulay started his intervention #forum2010
  • 12:47 PM: Stephen Spillane battery dying… soo long
  • 12:48 PM: AnnaLindh So tomorrow, you will see from the two shore on the Mediterranean, something that was unbelivable before, Azoulay #forum2010
  • 12:49 PM: AnnaLindh This evening, we tell you, the moment of the clash of civilization in over, Azoulay #forum2010
  • 12:51 PM: AnnaLindh This evening, here in this room, we tell you: the moment of the theory of the clash of civilization is over, Azoulay #forum2010
  • 12:51 PM: midhal human reality of the union tomorrow… President ALF #forum2010
  • 12:52 PM: carmelva key speakers’ at #forum2010 msg: peace is not eutopia, it’s easy, it’s a decision away -political will & collective action.
  • 12:53 PM: AnnaLindh Minister, President, please remember that this 1000 people are here to tell you that this dream is now possible, Azoulay #forum2010
  • 12:55 PM: AnnaLindh It is a Forum of responible committment, Azoulay #forum2010
  • 1:01 PM: AnnaLindh The civil society here, gives this big responsibility to you, President, the UfM is not a luxury, Azoulay #forum2010
  • 1:02 PM: AnnaLindh Amb Florensa, General Director of IEMed, at #forum2010
  • 1:05 PM: AnnaLindh Senen Florensa, General Director of IEMED, Head of the ALF Spanish Network now speaking at #forum201
  • 1:08 PM: midhal EC commissioner Fule takes the floor #forum2010 — social cultural and human dimension of the euro med union
  • 1:09 PM: AnnaLindh The Mediterranean is the space of cultures connected by a common destiny, Commissioner Füle at #forum2010
  • 1:10 PM: midhal Inter Cultural dialogue must promote cultural diversity as an opportunity Fule #forum2010
  • 1:13 PM: adshill Dialogue and political will is necessary for resolving conflict in the region #forum2010
  • 1:13 PM: AnnaLindh The National Networks kept the ALF staedy where everybody was asking were EuroMed was going, Commisioner Füle at #forum2010
  • 1:13 PM: carmelva the eu rep targets tension & ignorance between europe & muslim world. At least israel isn’t the only problem here #forum2010
  • 1:14 PM: AnnaLindh Salwa Siniora, Head of the ALF Lebanese Network, now speaking at #forum2010
  • 1:17 PM: AnnaLindh The objective is reshaping the present to a more embracing future, Siniora at #forum2010
  • 1:19 PM: AnnaLindh We are here renewing our commitment to live together in diversity, both equal in dignity, Siniora at #forum2010
  • 1:20 PM: AnnaLindh Ethar El Katatney, winner of the Journalist Award, now speaking at #forum2010
  • 1:21 PM: AnnaLindh We are here renewing our commitment to live, together in diversity, and equal in dignity, Siniora at #forum2010
  • 1:23 PM: midhal despite all our difference – we are so similar- questions the concept us and them – our humanity unites us #forum2010 Ethar
  • 1:23 PM: AnnaLindh The incresed communication of the new media didn’t increase our tolerance to each other, Ethar at #forum2010
  • 1:24 PM: AnnaLindh Together we are stronger that we could ever be apart, Ethar at #forum2010
  • 1:24 PM: midhal we are so connected – but we still need dialogue and d to talk and listen to each other -Ether – #forum2010
  • 1:25 PM: AnnaLindh Jorge Sampaio, UN High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, now speaking at the opening of #forum2010
  • 1:25 PM: carmelva ethar el katatney, saudi arabian winner of journalism award -impressing. Vailed ,speaks of common humanity & beuty of diverse #forum2010
  • 1:26 PM: AnnaLindh RT @carmelva: ethar el katatney, saudi arabian winner of journalism award -impressing. Vailed ,speaks of common humanity & beuty of div …
  • 1:29 PM: adshill “Our diversity gives birth to amazing things, we need to look listen and talk to eachother. Like this we can change the world” #forum2010
  • 1:31 PM: carmelva rt @annalindh: the increased communition of the new media didn’t increase our tolerance towards each other -ethar el katatney #forum2010
  • 1:33 PM: AnnaLindh We need your cooperation, we need your inputs, and we need your firendship, Sampaio at #forum2010
  • 1:34 PM: AnnaLindh Jordi Hereu, Mayor of Barcelona, now speaking at #forum2010
  • 1:36 PM: AnnaLindh This is wonderful afternoon for the city of Barcelona, you can count on the support of the cities of the Mediterranean, Hereu at #forum2010
  • 1:37 PM: midhal Mayor of Barcelona – welcomes px’s to the city #forum2010
  • 1:38 PM: AnnaLindh The world has come to build Barcelona, and it knows what dialogue is, and what it happens when there is no dialogue, Hereu at #forum2010
  • 1:38 PM: midhal diversity is and excellent opportunity #forum2010
  • 1:38 PM: carmelva barcelona’s mayor speaks in catalan. This is the first language i must use the simultanious translation . #forum2010
  • 1:39 PM: AnnaLindh Jose Montilla, President of the Generalitat de Catalunya, now seaking at #forum2010
  • 1:39 PM: AnnaLindh Jose Montilla, President of the Generalitat de Catalunya, now speaking at #forum2010
  • 1:41 PM: AnnaLindh We catalan people are proud that Barcelona is the simbol of the values of the declaration in 1995, Montilla at #forum2010
  • 1:43 PM: AnnaLindh The official inaguration ended, now opening of the intercultural fair in room 113-114 #forum2010
  • 1:44 PM: carmelva the amazing woman i just twitted about is @etharkamal. Thanks @lisang #forum2010
  • 2:26 PM: adshill @carmelva Hey!! Hopefully see you in person soon, but the hashtag is actually #forum2010 as its been promoted like this for a while! 🙂
  • 2:28 PM: Stephen Spillane the tweeting seems to have come to a close, so I will close this for the night. I will start a new one in time for plenary one in the morning. In the mean time check out annalindh.wordpress.com for more details.

Hello from Barcelona!!!

Political Map of the Mediterranean Basin
Image via Wikipedia

Good afternoon from a warm Barcelona. I have reached my destination (unlike my luggage) and I am ensconced in my hotel room waiting for things to start across the road at the CCIB.

I may have neglected to inform you why I’m actually here. Well apart from blogging over on Conference Blog (shhh its not live yet! 😉 ) I will be giving my thoughts on the blogger trainer i did last year.

From the Programme

Intercultural Dialogue 2.0.
Xavier Baro (ALF Bloggers Network)
Room (127) – 5 March at 18:00
The session will focus on the presentation of the new Intercultural Dialogue Tool Kit developed by the ALF for training bloggers. The main aim of the Tool Kit is to engage social media as innovative tool to promote Intercultural dialogue in the Euro-Mediterranean area. The workshop will
introduce the manual, have a short practical phase and
present some results of the first training course. Other four
bloggers who participated in the pilot training course will
attend the workshop and give a vision from their side:
Carmel Vaisman (Israel), Ahmed Youssry (Egypt), Stephen
Spillane (Ireland), Majd Beltaji (Palestine).

It should be fun.

Its now time to head for the Opening Ceremony which will be happening in half an hour!

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Join the Debate in Barcelona

Well tomorrow I am off to Barcelona for the Anna Lindh Foundation Forum 2010. I will be live-blogging and tweeting about the forum, with the help of a few others. I know I am not a big user of twitter at the moment, but college is taking up a lot of the time I would have spent on it, so I will be back to it tomorrow.

You too, though, will be able to see whats happening and pass on your comments as the plenary sessions will be webcast. I received an email about it today.

JOIN THE DEBATE

‘Bridging the Gap in Mutual Perceptions between people across the Mediterranean’
09.30 to 11.00 AM CET Friday 5th March 2010

Join the debate with live web-cast and blog at:
www.annalindhforum.org

The debate will be broadcast live from the Anna Lindh Forum in Barcelona, involving an audience of over 900 civil society representatives from the 43 countries of the Union for the Mediterranean.

You can also follow us at www.twitter.com/AnnaLindh to get the latest quotes and updates, and join the online discussion using the hashtag #forum2010

Do join in! It will be interesting to hear what you think!

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The Other Workshops [ALF Forum 2010]

Poster in scout hall
Image by stephen.spillane via Flickr

Yesterday I posted that I was attending the Cities, Migrants and Diversity:  “Valuing Diversity, Understanding Migration” Workshop at the Anna Lindh Foundation Forum 2010, but today I have decided to tell you about the other Workshops available if you attend! It was a tough decision for me to make.

First up is Education, Intercultural Learning & Youth: “Learning to live together in diversity” This did intially appeal to me, considering my membership of Scouting Ireland, but in the end the other one stood out more. This Workshop will cover:

  • Intercultural dimension of the non-formal education in the Mediterranean context
  • Teacher trainings and other tools to deal with diversity
  • Youth policies for intercultural dialogue

It should be interesting.

Next up is Cultural & Artistic Collaborations: “Creativity for Dialogue”. Now because my interest in Art has been heightened, this one also appealed to me, but not as strongly.  This will cover:

  • Mobility as a pre-condition for intercultural dialogue and exchange
  • Networking: cultural platforms and networks
  • Translation and the challenge of understanding the other: the state of the art

The next choice is Creating Spaces of Peace and Co-existence: “Restore Trust, Rebuild Bridges”. Now this would be an interesting workshop. Now unfortunately I didn’t think I would be able to use what I would learn from it. This will cover:

  • Revitalize reconciliation processes and confidence building in conflict areas with intercultural and non-violent means
  • New patterns to deal with the social consequences of the economic crisis in multicultural contexts
  • Application of intercultural approaches for a culture of peace based on understanding, justice and respect
  • Follow-up of the ALF initiative “Restore Trust, Rebuild Bridges”

The next one is Religion, Spirituality and Values: “Inter-religious dialogue & common values for action”. This is currently an issue in Europe, and one I am interested in. How I would approach it would be difficult though. So hence why I didn’t pick it! This workshop will cover:

  • Educational professionals, civil society actors and religious leaders as active agents for the promotion of coexistence and interreligious respect
  • Spaces of encounter: dialogue and exchange between religious and secular communities
  • Developing working tools for inter-religious dialogue: trainings, mapping exercises and practices

And as a reminder the Cities, Migrants & Diversity: “Valuing Diversity, Understanding Migration” will cover:

  • – Migrations and mutual perceptions in the Mediterranean: challenging stereotypes
  • – Migrants and immigrated communities as key actors of development and intercultural action
  • – Intercultural approaches in dealing with strengthening social cohesion and solidarity in multicultural urban contexts

There are some really good chances to learn at this event. I hope to learn alot.

Don’t forget to check out the provisional programme for the Forum!

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Decisions, Decisions! [ALF Forum 2010]

{{w|Kindergarten}} on the Ministry of Agricult...
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If you intend on attending the Anna Lindh Forum 2010, you must register! The deadline is fast approaching by the way. You must register by 12th February 2010, 20.00 GMT.

As part of this process you must pick which workshop you want to attend in the Agora. The choice is from:

  • Education, Intercultural Learning and Youth: “Learning to live together in diversity”
  • Cultural & Artistic Collaborations: “Creativity for Dialogue”
  • Creating Spaces of Peace and Co-existence: “Restore Trust, Rebuild Bridges”
  • Cities, Migrants and Diversity: “Valuing Diversity, Understanding Migration”
  • Religion, spirituality and values: “Inter-religious dialogue and common values for action”

It was a fairly hard decision to make for me. Considering my past work on diversity and identity, I decided to go for the Cities, Migrants and Diversity workshop.  It will be about the following:

  • Migrations and mutual perceptions in the Mediterranean: challenging stereotypes
  • Migrants and immigrated communities as key actors of development and intercultural action
  • Intercultural approaches in dealing with strengthening social cohesion and solidarity in multicultural urban contexts

It should be interesting.

Of course in the medina there will be chances to find out more things and learns loads!

That consists of

  • Intercultural Fair
  • Best Practice
  • Project Ideas
  • Self-organized sessions (network and/ or partners’ meetings)
  • Artistic Exchange

Im getting really excited about it!

By the way if you wish to attend, these are the criteria you must fill:

he participants should:

  • be a resident in one of the 43 countries of the Union for the Mediterranean;
  • have knowledge/experience in at least one of the fields of the Anna Lindh Foundation;
  • be strongly motivated to encourage intercultural dialogue;
  • be able to communicate in English or French;
  • pay a participation fee (Euro 30 for ALF members; Euro 100 for non-members).

More information in the info pack (pdf)

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