Our personal stories
- such as impressions, jokes, feelings, observations - might explain best what NICO_F and Facilitation meant for us, what it did to us and why we consider it to be important..
What does NICO-F mean for me?
In December 2008, my boss told me that in January I will travel to Turkey. I was quite surprised, why there, so he described me with a few words the project, NICO-F. I did not know almost nothing about Turkey and I was also of some concern to what the country I actually go. I am not unaware of Izmir city, which had made our first meeting of partners in the project.
The greater was my surprise when we flew over Izmir in January . I tell my boss, you hear, this does not appear to be any small town, but and when we landed and I saw an airport lounge, it was clear that we landed in a huge city.
At the airport waiting for us our partners and our Turkish hosts. Emin Bakay and Guldan Kalem. For me it was a shock how great the terminal in Izmir is, another shock was that Guldan is a woman!
All your mail correspondence I have is ignorance I wrote Mr. Guldan. When they took us by car at the hotel I asked Emin how many people Izmir has. He said to me, almost as much as your all country. This was further shock.Next shock for me was how they know eat the Turks. At the hotel we met on the second day after arrival at breakfast. Service was a young waiter he could have about as many years as my son. When I wanted to give the coffee sugar cube he came to me and asked me, madam, can I help you? In Turkey, the sugar is packed in small blocks, so that each cube is wrapped in paper. The young man noticed the very first morning that I have this problem extract sugar and then automatically each day he came to me and always unwrapped sugar, so I can drink my morning coffee. It was very touching as the young man very discreet and polite was always at hand.
When we were last day of our stay at the reception waiting for the taxi, we decided that we still have a Turkish tea. We therefore asked the young waiter to give us two teas. When we wanted to pay, he told us that it was a tea from it. He did not let us pay.
After returning home, , my friends asked me ,how it was in Turkey: I replied ohTurkey, you absolutelly do not know what it means Turkey!
July 2010 / ANNA
A short reflection on what treasure I treasure I found with you!
Even I only worked during two weeks with you, I totaly enjoyed it and I took a lot of treasures with me. And one of this treasure is to more appreciate the work with elderly and more experienced people without being judged "naif" or "young". And therein, I think that this kind of appreciation would not be possible without working with facilitation methods and people oriented approaches like to listen actively, to raise questions, to take the time to elaborate, to share openly experiences, to stay open minded, to trust and to have an interest in the people and not only the possible outcome/content.
So what I will "pack in my suitcase" is to get so open minded as I lived the two meetings with you and to get more curious to work with more experienced and elderly people instead of - of my simplified point of view - judge them unflexible, arrogant and unable to give power to somebody else.
Thank you for this experience and let's try to open our work for more intergenerational work! It's so important not only because our societies are getting older!
June 2010 / LENA
What Swedish research shows!!!!!!!!
Very little has so far been done in organizations regarding means and methods for creating learning between the employees soon to be retired and young people who are about to start our their working life! I can see a great need for finding new ways of working for creating learning between old and new experienced and yound and more enthusiastic. And especially a great need for supporting management who do not know how to handle the situation. Traditional management theories are not longer valid and managers desperately need new tools for leading their employees in order to enhance and develop participation, commitment and individual responsibility.
Out NICO-F project has shown how powerful facilitatation can be and how much learning between individuals from different cultures including different ages it can create. Another very strong reflection from our project is how facilitation can deepen already existing knowledge. When a group of experienced project managers get together and have the capability of listening instead of fighting for their own cause - only the sky is the limit!
And finally when it comes to all forms of research (even research from Sweden) - nothing is new, most things already discovered. The challenge and the great potential lies in implementing all that research shows! Without doing - no learning! And facilitation is an effective way of bridging the gap between research and actually doing. Facilitation is the future!!!!!!
Thank you alle for a great journey! Let's travel again some time!
KARI - facilitator from Sweden!
I, Mari, too think we have been on extraordinary learning journey, From the first steps in Izmir where we felt like strangers and that the projects were quite diverse, to Berlin where we worked in mutual understanding. Our experience has for sure proven the stength of facilitation. We have accomplished a lot of things in these four meetings. We have also shared many different experiences in different cultures and it has proven the importance of doing instead of talking. Playing, dancing, walking, eating, seeing, listening all with many thoughtful hosts to plan our activities has helped us to come to an understanding of each other. It also shows how many shortcuts you can take if you use imagination and look for possibilities to share by all means.
In the last meeting it was a total intergenerational learning from the first night when the young people were asking questions to us elderly people and to the last day when we elderly were being novise and taught by the young people. It says it all for NICO. But also sharing in every possible dimension.
I am grateful for having the chance to experience the power of intercultural experience and learning. There is HOPE!
Thank you all