Due to the fact that NWM in Zaragoza took place only a few weeks after Agora Cagliari, it was mainly organised by former NetCom Carmen María and her team, although some members of the new team (Olga Rivero’s Tripulación) were also involved in the programme preparation and presentations.
Another Network Meeting (NWM), another pleasant and different experience with the members of our Network. We needed some winds of change in our NWMs, so we tried to implement some changes and improvements suggested by the participants in our last Spring NWM in Alicante, although the new team will have to continue working on it in order to keep improving the format. This time, we tried to make the content more practical and we held more sessions to share knowledge and experiences. There was more time for participants to talk and share their concerns, doubts and ideas, even if the outcome was not as dynamic and energetic as expected after all the discussions we had during the Spring NWM in Alicante and in our Facebook group before Agora Cagliari, where the participation in discussions increased notably.
The team was lucky to count on experienced people from different European bodies, people who contributed and shared a lot with the rest; Antonija Parat from the Comité Directeur (CD) who showed us the achievements of AEGEE so far and made us think about our motivation while also clarifying loads of interesting topics, Policy Officers Léa Charlet and Pablo Hernández who conducted a consultation on Gender Equality and Youth Employment, Speaker of the Action Agenda Coordination Team (ACT) Ruben Navarro who led a great session about the Action Agenda, Esperanza Rodriguez from AEGEE-Las Palmas who taught us more about Financial Reports and Erasmus +, Anna Gumbau from the 30th Anniversary Team who informed us about the project, Liaison Officer Laia García who was always there to raise discussions, Regional Advisor from BEST Carlos Freire who was representing our beloved partner association and many other involved and active members from our area.
Not to talk about the nice social programme AEGEE-Zaragoza prepared! A tourist bus tour around Zaragoza to start knowing the city, their great work with the location of the accommodation and the facilities (in the middle of the city!), nice meals and many details thanks to their excellent fundraising work and, of course, a Celebrities party where participants let their imagination soar and became famous for that night. It should be pointed out that our current president, Paul Smits, was more than present there!
Below you can find some experiences from participants and presenters with different backgrounds:
Antonija Parat from CD: ‘I enjoyed the event very much. The atmosphere was just perfect: engaged participants, caring organisers, an experienced NetCom team and quality content. For me as a CD member it was nice to see face-to-face where our members stand, what the topics are they care about, and what they hope to see in the future in our organisation. I was truly happy to be there.’
Silvia Sierra from AEGEE-Zaragoza, main organiser of the NWM: ‘It has been a pleasure to coordinate such a great event, the zNWM, and we hope this event has been really productive and fruitful. We have learned from our own successes and problems to continue growing up without falling in the same old errors. Afterwards, the organisers’ reward has been to know that our participants have been happy during the event and have enjoyed it in every moment.’
Pablo Ruiz from AEGEE-Zaragoza, subcommissioner: ‘When I think of the last Network Meeting, I smile to myself seeing the great atmosphere that surrounded the event. Excellent lodging in the center of the city, quite good meals, devoted organisers and, above all, a group of participants who have shown they don’t only share a common region, but what they actually share is a strong friendship and a really good vibe between them. Could I ask for anything else from a NWM in my beloved city? The only thing I disliked about the event is the fact it had to finish.’
Esperanza Rodriguez from Las Palmas ‘After being away from Europe for some time, I was excited but a bit afraid before this NWM. It was my 4th but after missing the previous four, I wasn’t exactly an oldie nor a newbie… But I came back with my batteries fully charged after such a weekend! For me, everything was perfect: the organisation, the content, the social program and the team spirit!’
Julien Denis from AEGEE-Paris: ‘This was my first AEGEE meeting and besides my admiration for the perfect job made by the organising committee, I was impressed by the commitment of all those young people to this association, all of them sharing a similar vision and working hand in hand. This experience made me want to commit myself to a greater extent in AEGEE and work harder to develop my antenna.’
Olga Rivero, current NetCom: ‘Even though I was expecting more discussions and productive talks at some points, I think that with this event we were really on the way of organising the kind of NWM that participants want! Everybody was really happy and motivated at the end of the weekend, and for those who work on the content of the event that is just amazing and inspiring to keep on working to make it even better.’
Once more, many thanks to AEGEE-Zaragoza’s organising team for their great help and wonderful work with the logistics of the event, making everyone comfortable and happy. Thanks again to Antonija for all her help and contribution to this NWM. And a special mention from my side to my team, La Tripulación, and the other collaborators for their support during the organisation of this NWM and their outstanding work. And of course, last but not least, thanks to every participant who took part in this NWM.
Let’s keep on rocking “La Nave” and AEGEE!
Written by Carmen María López Banegas, AEGEE-Alicante.
Pictures courtesy of Alberto Arroyo from AEGEE-Madrid and of AEGEE-Zaragoza’s team.