ICYE UK multiplier meeting Nov 2019 – sharing the STAR E training handbook

The STAR E project has developed two publications – Managing organisational change: tools and methods to become a diversity-sensitive NGO, and The STAR E training handbook – both of which we hope other organisations can use for their work with young people and their own governance to help them engage with issues of diversity and inclusion.

One way to share these publications is what we are calling “multiplier meetings”, or Fachtag in German. These are sessions with people from a variety of organisations, where we showcase a method from one of the two handbooks, as a way to encourage attendees to use them with either their young people or management team.

In November 2019, ICYE UK held our Annual General Meeting (AGM), which was attended by members from across the network, many of whom work or volunteer for organisations that engage young people. It therefore seemed an ideal opportunity to run our first multiplier meeting for the training handbook, as this was more suited to the kind of people attending the AGM.

I decided that the simplest method to use in this context would be Columbian Hypnosis, as it required no additional materials and could be done within the timeframe available for this session.

I introduced the STAR E programme, including our work on managing organisational change, to provide some context for the handbook, and then explained what we would be doing next. Attendees were split into pairs with one designated the ‘leader’ and the other the ‘follower’. For the first five minutes the follower has to mirror everything the leader does: anything from holding up their hand in front of their face to climbing over the nearest chair! After five minutes people swap roles and it’s the turn of the follower to lead.

The idea behind Columbian Hypnosis is that people experience both the power to influence and powerlessness, and are then encouraged to reflect on how both experiences made them feel.

We used the prompts from the handbook for the debriefing, sparking a lively conversation and some interesting debate. Many of the attendees said they were inspired to read other methods from the handbook and explore how these could be used at their organisations.

The full training handbook will be available in print and online from February 2020. If you are interested in attending a multiplier meeting, where you would also receive a printed copy of the training handbook, contact your local partner organisation. The online version will be available on this website.

European Parliamentary Elections

Release of UNITED’s Index of Discriminatory Parties in Europe

Who are the parties and politicians spreading hatred and intolerance in Europe?

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

A week before the European Parliamentary Elections (23 – 26 May 2019), UNITED is launching an online Index of Discriminatory Political Parties who spread hatred and discrimination in Europe, trying to undermine the achievements we’ve made in terms of equality, solidarity and diversity.

With close to 100 million European citizens still undecided how they will vote, we appreciate the challenge of casting an informed vote.

UNITED’s Index of Discriminatory Political Parties in Europe
therefore provides a crucial overview of political forces that we do not want to see in the European Parliament.

UNITED greatly appreciates the valuable feedback received by our member organisations and volunteers on ground. Without your support this index would not have come to existence!

“We want to return to normality. We want to live in Poland, not in the eurokolkhoz Land, not in the Republic of Polin Friends, not in some rainbow republic in which Jews, sodomites, communists impose on Poles not only how to rule, what is the state system, but also how we are to raise our children, about what history we can remember, what traditions we are allowed to cultivate.” – Confederation (KORWiN), Poland.

“Part of our organism–an important part: our immune system, that which should protect us–has turned against us. We’re being weakened, undermined, surrendered in every respect. Malevolent, aggressive elements are being smuggled into our social body in unprecedented numbers, while true causes and consequences are kept hidden.” – Thierry Baudet, Forum for Democracy (FvD), the Netherlands.

“For our children, to leave behind an Islamic caliphate with sharia law in our cities is not something I want to do and I’m going to do everything in my power to avert this sad ending for Europe.” – Matteo Salvini, Lega Nord (LN), Italy.

These are just few of the examples of racist, hateful, discriminatory messages spread by politicians running for the European Parliament in 2019. Unfortunately, there are many more.

We must not let these forces gain more power by being elected to the European Parliament. This is why we need to continue our fight. Please keep reporting by filling in this form, so that we can expand the index and better inform European citizens whom not to vote for!

We are also using social media to track and call out any incidents of hateful and discriminatory discourse. Follow our actions on Facebook and Twitter, and help us hold nationalist and xenophobic parties accountable. If you come across any unacceptable rhetoric, raise your voice, call them out, tag us in your post, so together we can #MakeThemSmallAgain!


We also encourage you to keep organising activities motivating young people in your area to vote in the EP elections! If you need a last-minute inspiration, check out our activity suggestions – we developed quiz, game and activity ideas for you!

Happy Voting and see you on the brighter side!

Yours truly,

UNITED and its Campaign Preparatory Group

European Parliamentary Elections 2019
Website | Facebook | Twitter

UNITED is the pan-European network against nationalism, racism, fascism and in support of migrants and refugees, supported from more than 550 organisations from 48 European countries. How to join the network: see www.unitedagainstracism.org/supporters.
This campaign has been made possible with the support of the Council of Europe (European Youth Foundation) and the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union.
The information contained herein does not necessarily reflect the position nor the opinion of our sponsors. Sponsors are not to be held responsible for any use that may be made of it.
UNITED E-News is an irregular email service to over 12,000 organisations and contact persons active in the working fields: anti-racism, refugee support, anti-fascism, against antisemitism, migration, minority issues, intercultural youth work, against nationalism, etc.
You have received this E-news because your organisation or institution is listed in the UNITED online database and/or Addressbook Against Racism; you have attended a UNITED event; have participated in a UNITED campaign; are a partner in the working fields above; and/or have expressed an interest in UNITED network’s issues.
If you don’t want to receive E-news anymore, you can unsubscribe at this link. If you would like to subscribe with a different e-mail address, please fill out the form on the UNITED website.

UNITED for Intercultural Action
European network against nationalism, racism, fascism and in support of migrants and refugees
Postbus 413 – NL 1000 AK Amsterdam
phone +31-20-6834778 – fax +31-20-6834582


I attended the ICYE STAR-E meeting in Helsinki. Other UK Trustees, as well as staff, have benefited from attending the STAR-E meetings: these are a great opportunity to learn about our federation partners and to be part of vital joint initiatives which become stronger and more effective from the intra-federation collaboration. Inter-cultural exchange is a fact in our relationships and partnerships, not just in our name.

ICYE UK is proud to be a part of STAR-E and has been enthusiastically involved at every opportunity. We are incredibly grateful to ICJA for facilitating this opportunity to gain a fresh perspective on antiracism from true experts like UNITED. It has been a privilege to be able to send representatives to all STAR-E training seminars, and the information and ideas they have brought back to ICYE UK have been invaluable.

ICYE UK has already integrated a number of training methods learned at STAR-E seminars in to our own training camps and hope that these new training approaches will help educate our volunteers about racism and their role as global citizens.

ICYE UK has also been given the opportunity and the methods to look at our organisational prejudices. It is our hope to make ICYE UK an even more transparent and accessible organisation, open to the widest possible range of potential volunteers and partner organisations.

ICYE UK is looking forward to the next transnational meeting and promoting the publications to wider audiences. We plan to engage with both our host partner organisations in the UK and our global partners around the world to share our learning and to enable more individuals and organisations to benefit from the outcomes of STAR E.

“STAR E – Be the Change!”: Training on Diversity-Oriented Change Management and Organizational Development

“Great trainers, great group atmosphere, interesting concepts. I hope this opportunity will be taken seriously in my organization and will be actually applied in practice.” (Please find here the final activity report: FinalActivityReport_BeTheChange_Berlin_2019_ns )

The training course “Be the Change!” was developed as an accompanying measure and opportunity to train employees, co-workers and active members of the participating organizations in the field of diversity-oriented organizational development and change management. The training sessions constantly interrelated the values of diversity-orientation, anti-discrimination and inclusion in youth and voluntary service organizations with reflections and practical learning about how to instigate critical dialogue and actually start with and facilitate change processes in NGOs.
The training took place from 18th to 22nd of February 2019 in Berlin. The host organisation “ICJA Freiwilligenaustauch weltweit” was pleased to welcome 20 representatives of its partner organizations from Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Poland, Russia, Slovakia and the United Kingdom. The training programme was run by the expert organization SOCIUS Organisationsberatung gGmbH.

Group Dynamics:
Even though the program lasted only five days, the group grew together very well even if there was a diversity of age and background. While some participants knew each other since a long time, others had never met. The facilitators were well prepared for the high degree of diversity within the group and implemented many innovative team building and relaxing energizers, allowing participants to express their mood and wishes even dancing. On the one hand, the group itself accepted every activity, never complained and tried to use every opportunity to learn what was offered by the facilitators. On the other hand, the facilitators were flexible, adapted very well the content and methodology to the mood of participants and situation in the group. The coffee breaks were tasteful and interesting at the same time since everyone brought their own snacks and sweets from their home country. People exchanged thoughts and their experience with struggles and strategies and also laughed a lot together which helped to strengthen the bonds of friendship within the partnership.

Seminar Content and the Relevance for the STAR E Partnership:
The program established four competence areas needed for understanding and working towards change with a focus on diversity, anti-racism and inclusion. A wide variety of methods was applied and background information was provided. Participants constantly were encouraged to contribute and reflect about how the seminar content could contribute to bring about change in their organization. After having laid the theoretical basis during the first days, the last two days were very active. Participants could implement the just learned methods to their organizations’ change processes.
In summary, after the training the participants were very happy with the results and looked forward to make use of the newly discovered tools. The training contributed a great deal to the participant’s understanding of the role of change management in working towards diversity and against racism within/ with their organizations. This learning experience will enable them to strengthen their role and profile in combating racism and becoming facilitators of dialogue and inclusion. It could be felt that this outcome was crucial as it will greatly enhance the work of the STAR E (Standing together against racism in Europe) partnership project.

Finally, we would like to thank the facilitators from SOCIUS, Joana Ebbinghaus and Simon Mohn as well as the participants and partner organizations for their great cooperation and highly valuable contributions!

UNITED COnference on Coexistence

Good news, for those who did not apply yet, we are extending the deadline for nominations to take part in our upcoming UNITED conference, which is now 31 March. You can find more information about the conference’s topic and programme here.

You can nominate your delegates by using this form. Be aware of the financial conditions of taking part in this conference. Please note that only the selected participants will receive an answer with more details regarding the conference.

What can you expect if you take part in a UNITED Conference?

A large number of fellow Human Rights activists
Information on good practices
Possibilities on network building
Ideas for funding and partnerships
Open discussions on relevant topics
Local context and a wonderful experience of Albania!

About the Conference

UNITED gladly invites you to nominate Delegates for our upcoming UNITED Conference near Tirana, Albania, taking place from the 15 to 20 May 2019. The conference will focus on coexistence, not only as a general value of understanding and peaceful living within a community, but as a practical strategy that can help facing the current challenges of Europe on many different levels.

Since coexistence is a broad topic and can involve several aspects of life, UNITED has decided to make the working and understanding easier, so to facilitate the learning and the communicating process. For this reason, the conference will include:

Panel discussions with experts that will help clarify what coexistence means.
Successful examples and good practices of coexistence.
Focal working groups on Communication, Campaign, Advocacy, Education and Community Building as basis for a coexistence strategy.
Practical workshops on how to raise funds for a strategy.
Chance for networking and initiating joint actions to pave the way for future cooperation.
We look forward to your nomination!

Organizational change training for more diversity

“Now I have a clearer idea of how we can really make change processes, the last time I had an overview, now I really understand,” said one of the participants of the training “Be the Change” which took place in Berlin 2 weeks ago. About 20 colleagues from all over Europe came together for 5 days to train accompanying change processes towards a racism-critical and diversity-sensitive organization. The training was facilitated by Joana Ebbinghaus and Simon Mohn.

During the training programme, various models and practical tools of Organizational Development were introduced and applied to the participants’ own organizations. Special rituals were a wake-up dance every morning and the reflection with a learning partner every evening. Apart from conveying new ideas for self-led organizational change, the participants also tested the feasibility of the models in practices, since they are meant to be comprised in a manual afterwards. The latter ought to have a look on facilitating organizational change through the lense of diversity.

The training course “Be the Change” was an accompanying measure of the Erasmus+ Key Action 2 project #star_e.  “Standing Together against Racism in Europe” is a 3 year project coordinated by ICJA Freiwilligenaustausch weltweit in cooperation with 8 partner organizations from different corners of Europe, one of them being SOCIUS. The partners in this project strongly believe in the credible, holistic fight against racism at all levels of their work. Together with the experts from SOCIUS they currently work on the creation of a manual on how to accompany diversity-oriented change processes in international youth and voluntary service organizations.

Call you for action for the European Week Against Racism (16-24 March 2019)

We call you for action to get UNITED and start planning activities for the upcoming European Week Against Racism (16-24 March 2019).

So now, we are very curious to hear what you have planned!

We ask you to organise your activities around the theme of face-to-face meetings — to get people from all backgrounds together locally and talk, sing, dance, eat, play, meet to celebrate diversity. Take a look at our UNITED Action Week Against Racism website (http://weekagainstracism.eu/join-the-campaign/suggested-activities-2019/) and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/UnitedActionWeek/) for some inspiration and great ideas from previous campaigns.

Europe-wide Activity Map

Perhaps you have some great suggestions we haven’t thought of? Please share with us and help your UNITED family members all over Europe to get their creative juices flowing and motivated to start their own local campaigns!

As you know, we are planning to create a Europe-wide Activity Map, so we will share your local activities there to show the world that we are a UNITED and welcoming Europe, where diversity is celebrated and discrimination has no place!

Please let us know what you are planning for the European Week Against Racism by filling in the following form before 10 March! That would really help us in organising our work and setting up the Map in time ahead of the Action Week.

AUS participated in training course Be The Change!

Let’s “Be the change”!
Ragnhildur and 20 other representatives of 10 youth NGO’s from all over Europe participated in the training course on “Diversity Oriented Change Management” which toook place in Berlin from 18-22nd of February. The course was organized by ICJA in coooperation with SOCIUS an expert organization on organisational development in the frame of the STAR_E  partnership project. We reflected, used methods and tools and got inspiration on changes needed so that we can truly become more inclusive and diverse in our organisations.  #ausmoments #icye #icja #star_e

Press Release: “Be the Change” – Training on Diversity-Oriented Change Management

ICJA Volunteer Exchange Worldwide is pleased to welcome 20 representatives of its partner organisations from Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Poland, Russia, Slovakia and the United Kingdom to Berlin from the 18th to the 22nd of February 2019. The training programme is run by the expert organization SOCIUS https://socius.de . SOCIUS has worked with hundreds of NGO’s, foundations, Universities and governmental institutions over the past 20 Years and is widely recognized as an expert in the field of organizational development and change.

Training on Diversity-Oriented Change Management and Organisational Development
The training is designed for employees, co-workers and active members of participating organisations in the field of International Voluntary Service. The training sessions will constantly interrelate the values of diversity-orientation, anti-discrimination and inclusion with reflections and practical learning about change management in youth and voluntary service NGOs. The main mode of learning will be to learn about key concepts of organisational and system change, to try out practical tools and models and to reflect about their relevance for the participating organizations and other youth and voluntary service NGOs in Europe. The central questions of the training course will be: How can we make a difference given the challenge of increasing racism and discrimination against people of diverse backgrounds? Which changes are needed at a structural and operational level? How can we start reflective processes, take clear positions and display coherent behaviour?

Expected Results
The participants will gain knowledge about key concepts and the triggering factors of possible change processes. By analysing their own organisational culture and context, they will learn how to use change management tools and models which were developed in the frame of the STAR E Project.

STAR E – Standing Together against Racism in Europe!
This training course was developed as an accompanying measure in the frame of the “STAR E” Strategic Partnership Project which is co-founded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union. Further activities of STAR E will be partner meetings and workshops in Helsinki, Finland in March 2019 and in Cadza, Slovakia in October 2019. The closing event is taking place in Denmark in spring 2020. Further information: https://star-e.icja.de/

ICJA Volunteer Exchange Worldwide is an educational institution that organizes long-term volunteer services or short-term work camps for young people to raise their awareness about the effects of globalisation. The educational activities focus on topics such as peace and non-violent conflict resolution, the North-South divide and colonial continuities, discrimination, racism and xenophobia, intercultural competence and sustainability.

Coordination STAR E Project: Andreas Schwab, aschwab@icja.de, 030 200071631

For more information on the assocation, photos or interviews pl. contact: Dr. Andrea Schwieger Hiepko, aschwieger@icja.de, 030 200071623
Comprehensive data and information about the editor: www.icja.de

Please find here an activity report of this training course: FinalActivityReport_BeTheChange_Berlin_2019_ns