by Suhani Jain
So. I’m just going to say it. My time here so far with the Recrear team has been phenomenal. The days are packed with workshops, conferences and group sessions, and to quote a cliché, ‘there’s never a dull moment’.
Coming from a background of media and performing arts, Berlin is all I could ask for in a city! I am not much of a morning person, but I love waking up in the (very) early morning to fresh Berlin air.
On the 4th, we visited the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy (ICD) here in Berlin. Peter Rees, Development Director at the ICD, gave an informative talk telling us about how their organization works and tips on marketing our non-profit. To me, ‘inter cultural diplomacy’ always had a very political connotation and I hadn’t ever really learnt how an organization working in this field functioned or what kind of exchanges they did. It was great to learn the kind of inter-cultural exchange programs they set up, how they manage them, fundraising issues they face, etc. I would love for Recrear to move into an office just like theirs, with its own little art gallery, a separate room with a mini-stage and café setting, and others with projectors and comfy conference rooms. It would be the perfect working space!
In the evening we took part in a much needed brainstorming session moderated by Wiebke Koch. A social entrepreneur herself, she holds many workshops for young social entrepreneurs establishing their own organizations. She is soon about to take off on an exciting 180 days long trip through the villages of India on her bicycle to collect hands-on data on poverty and the effectiveness of development efforts there. You can check it out here: http://www.facebook.com/folksonspokes?ref=ts
The session really helped us to set the groundwork of our expectations, roles and goals for Recrear.
Aside from work, ‘playtime’ has also been very eventful in Berlin. Mauerpark is a trendy area with a new café, vintage shop or art gallery to discover each day. I’ll need an entirely new blog entry to tell you about our Alternative Tour of Berlin. (Coming up soon with pictures!)
It’s a great feeling to be working with so many people from around the world knowing that we’re all here to lay the foundation for something we all believe in so much. With such a culturally diverse group, I thought we might have problems in the decision making process. But so far, though the ride has been slightly bumpy, it is an absolute blast!