These days, all the Working Groups of AEGEE are in the middle of elections for new boards. The Sports Working Group (SWG) reflected on their year as the board of the SWG, and in this interview the Culture Working Group (CWG) and International Politics Working Group (IPWG) also look back at their time as board members since Agora Budapest.
During the time the IPWG has developed a new debate platform at the beginning of 2013, called AEGEEDebate. Besides this, they continued to update their blog website with new articles about International Politics. They continue to tackle various issues in AEGEEDebate which are relevant today. The success, however, depends on the will of AEGEE members to participate in the project.
One of the things that the CWG have been working on is the Cultural European Night (CEN) “During some months we developed a campaign to encourage organisers of all kind of events to introduce culture facts in their events. Culture European Night was one of those facts. Our principal aim is to include cultural topics like songs, typical dresses, some small explanations… That is the reason why promoting reports and contests like the best Cultural European Night Award have been created.”
Regarding the discussion on whether alcohol should be part of European Night or not the CWG comments “This debate has been one of the most famous. Hundreds of different opinions, comments, discussions… It is clear, everybody has a not ambiguous point, you simply love or hate it. Inside the CWG board we have our own personal opinions and have also debated about our general impressions and which point we should support. But what we have in common for sure is our desire of introducing Culture in all the CENs. Our desire is to have some shows, speeches, to learn about other cultures. The aim of the CWG is not to ban anything, but to enrich each event. If people want to drink, we are not going to tell them not to drink; people should be responsible for themselves.”
What have been the highlights?
IPWG: Networking. Since you are in the board you can get new, useful contacts with other people who are doing similar activities.
CWG: Without any doubt, we remark two occurrences: The recognition the CWG got for being the most active WG during the last Agora, and the creation of the new project EurStory. In the whole term were proposed 19 projects and 12 of them already carried out or done. Fifteen people have been actively responsible for these projects and many members have contributed. The board 2012/13 is very proud of this and believes in the possibilities of this cultural family for the next year. About EurStory, this is another sign of motivation; you do not always have the chance to watch the origin of a new AEGEE project inside a Skype members meeting debate. We wish all the best to this new family.
Both of the Working Groups agree with the SWG that keeping the activity high is difficult. To the question on what makes it difficult being a board member they say:
IPWG: To create communicate channels with members.
CWG: When a group has touched their zenith, the most difficult part is keeping the level of activity. We all are volunteers and have many different things to do in our lives. This was the challenge of the second term, which was not as active as the first one.
Will any of the current board members continue in the next board?
CWG: That is still not sure, but the current board agrees, there are many newbies inside the group who are perfectly able to continue this project and even improve some things. The current board members are continuing being active, of course, but we want to give the initiative to new minds, new points of view, a new capable generation. And this WG has enough potential board members for more successful years.
IPWG: It is not decided yet and it is dependent on the interest of others. Changing faces and bringing new ideas is, however, preferable.
It is certain that it is possible to learn and grow a lot while being a board member of a Working Group. “One of the best ways to “taste” the European feeling of AEGEE is joining the board of a WG. Inside a WG you have the chance to discover and get to know new people who organise projects and debate about the topic you like, in this case culture. So, it is easier to enjoy what you do and to find things to believe in. If you, member of the CWG, are motivated in your antenna and want to increase your knowledge and your experience in AEGEE, and of course you want to have much fun, we highly recommend you to join this cultural team; for the board 2012/2013 it was an amazing experience. We feel very grateful and motivated, and of course we will be glad to give a hand to the next team,” the CWG responds to The AEGEEan on the question on why they would encourage others to become part of the board.
For the rest of 2013 the IPWG would like to stick to the primary purpose of IPWG. That is to provide a discussion among the members, and at the same time they are preparing for Agora Zaragoza. There the participants can meet them at not only the fair but also taking part in the workshop hosted by Speaker Ivan Bielik.
Written by Patricia Anthony, AEGEE-København