by Hannah Isaac
I have spent a week at WCIA for work experience and it has been an engaging and eye-opening experience that I am grateful I had the opportunity to be involved with.
This week I have done various tasks – some working in communications. For example, on the first day I was tasked with writing a Facebook post about one of the WCIA’s recent achievements on projects. It had been a very busy week as the WCIA had two big events taking place on the last two days of the week, and I was involved with preparing for them.
I edited lots of different documents for the mock COP (which is a Model United Nations Conference that lot of different schools attend – this year based on climate change). I made sheets and placards and other things needed for these events, which helped me to practice and develop my ICT skills.
For some tasks I worked with Ellie, who was also doing work experience here, and I was interacting with different members of the WCIA team throughout the week as I did different jobs, which helped me develop my teamwork skills. I was asked to write a blog about a global issue, for the website so I had to do lots of research – which really helped me learn about lots of different issues there are in the world currently.
My favourite part of the week was the mock COP event that I attended and helped with in Cardiff. It helped me develop my communication skills through different tasks I did, for example assigning seats to students and instructed the press on what they should do. Also through hearing all the propositions from all the delegates of each country, talking about climate change it helped me to increase my knowledge and understanding of the current global crisis.
One of the things I found more challenging this week the freedom, as it was a contrast from school – having more control about when you work and when you take breaks. I enjoyed being given individual tasks to get on with as well tasks involving group work.
This week I really learnt more about the different organisations that WCIA is in partnership with, as well as WCIA itself. I have learned and become more aware and interested in recent international issues, and I think that is something that is important to be aware of. I have developed lots of skills and it has been a useful experience, and I would like to thank all the staff at WCIA for allowing me to do work experience here.
By Teresa Morandini
My experience at the WCIA has come to an end.
Since November, I have been volunteering with an amazing working group, always ready to help me in any possible way. It has been such a lovely time, in which I have learnt a lot.
Firstly, I had the chance to challenge myself by working in a different language. But, without doubt, I have to thanks all WCIA staff to have been patient with me and spent time to correct my work.
However, I have much more to be thankful.
As a matter of fact, these months were an opportunity, a job experience as well as a personal adventure.
Taking part to the numerous WCIA events made me realise the similarity with the Italian way to promote human rights. It was a surprisingly discovery, which led me to a new perspective on charity and campaigning.
Usually, we have the impression that human rights are too abstract. And, for certain extends, this is true. But, finding this correlation have broadened my horizon.
Why? Because I finally understood the language of Human Rights, made of universalism: the words for fighting the inequality, injustices and promoting global learning are the same in any languages: English, Welsh or Italian.
By keeping in mind this precious thought, I am leaving the WCIA to continue my studies in Brussels although I hope my future will reserve me more Wales further down in the line.
WCIA and the Wales Alliance for Global Learning (WAGL) welcomes new curriculum for Wales
The Welsh Government worked with education and childcare professionals, and other experts to develop a new approach to the curriculum for Wales. This resulted in developing guidance which will help funded non-maintained settings and schools create a new curriculum for their learners.
WCIA has responded with feedback on the Draft Curriculum for Wales 2022.
Overall, we are supportive of the direction of the new curriculum. We are pleased to see:
- a cross-curricular approach rooted in skills and experiences
- the prominence given to creating ethical informed citizens of Wales and the world
- the cross-curricular international perspective
- the cross-curricular wider skills that incorporate global citizenship skills
- the frequent inclusion in What Matters statements and progression steps of identifiable global citizenship skills and values – something which has developed positively as the various drafts of Areas of Learning and Experience have emerged
However, there are some clarifications we would recommend, including education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship (ESDGC) framework is implicit in much of the curriculum. We think it should be fully embedded across the Areas of Learning and in the What Matters statements.
We also believe that it is essential that the curriculum consistently balances the Welsh and the international dimensions to enable learners to develop as ethical citizens of the world.
Read the full feedback letter and the WAGL response here
Tensions rose among student delegates as they debated the issue of climate change during MockCOP sessions last week.
Pupils aged 14-18 from south and west wales schools, represented countries from all over the world at Mock COP (Conference of Parties) in Cardiff City Hall and Swansea Civic centre.
These sessions, organised by the WCIA and Size of Wales and financed by Scottish Power Foundation, provide students with the experience of a Model United Nations Climate Change Conference, as well as the chance to become Climate Champions.
Sarah Wynne, 17 from Porthcawl Comprehensive, said: “I was representing the USA, and didn’t really know what to expect but I have really enjoyed the day. I enjoy debating and it’s been great listening to what other delegates had to say.”
Rita Singh, Divisional sustainability Leader at Kingspan Insulation, chaired the MockCOP at Swansea’s Civic Centre.
She said: – “I am very impressed by the preparation the students have done, and they really took on the nations and their views, whether they believed it or not.
“Pupils took on impassioned roles, it was clear how sympathetic they felt, and that they stood up for the cause. They also recognised the importance of other roles and best of all, the need to get together to solve a global challenge like climate change.”
All participants in the regional MockCOP can apply to take place in a final overnight event in Cardiff in November 2019. This will include a MockCOP in the Senedd, as well as a fully funded overnight stay with an evening of inspiration to include workshops and talks – all attendees of this final event will have the opportunity to become Climate Champions.
Find out more information about the regional MockCOPs here
“An emotional roller coaster of an event,”
That’s how the dramatic event at the Temple of Peace on 18th May, in partnership with the Josef Herman Arts Foundation, was described. The Dragons Heart and Dragons Soul performance through music and dance, powerfully depicting the persecution of people with learning disabilities under the Nazi regime, brought many to tears. The Oasis Choir and Drummers, comprising performers from the local community and asylum seekers, performed songs that had been written by members – some haunting, some to lift the spirits. Oscar Castellino (accompanied by Gareth Llyr Simon) gave a wonderful taster for the Welsh National Opera’s forthcoming Freedom season. WCIA is proud to be partnering with the WNO in some of the events surrounding the opera productions in the Freedom Season, so do come along.
Refugees from Iran, Syria, Congo and Cameroun told emotional stories about the loss of human rights through persecution because of their language, political views or because they dared to speak out. Cardiff based poet, Ali Goolyad, gave a beautiful demonstration of why Somalia is called the country of poets, by performing some of his own work.
Participants were sustained by a tasty lunch generously sponsored by Unite. Everyone was given the chance to think about how they can join in campaigning to protect human rights through an interactive Changemakers session led by Jane Harries of WCIA.
Josef Herman, an artist and Jewish refugee from Poland, found a home and inspiration in Ystradgynlais. A film by local school children, depicting his emotional story of loss and finding a new home was shown. His son, David Herman, spoke powerfully about the importance of continuing to uphold human rights.
The musical finale was communal singing, guided by Frankie Armstrong, and a mass drumming session. “It was a most memorable day. We ended on a high note of hope, reflecting the key message of one of the asylum seekers’ songs: ‘Never Give Up’. “
Watch the video of the #EU2019 candidates answering global issues that affect us here in Wales, in Europe and across the world including: climate change; sustainability; migration; economic development; agriculture & social development here