Experiential learning with 16 social practitioners,

over 14 days.

Montreal, July 15 – 30th 2018

Recrear Magnify is a residency program for those who seek to nourish their creative and reflective selves.

For two weeks, you’ll find a home for your exploration. During the 2018 edition we will come together around this question:

How do I recognise and facilitate the personal transformation necessary

for me to belong to an organisation/system that feels alive and healthy?”


We invite you to strengthen your own social practice through participatory action research.

The program is now in it’s 8th edition and has trained over 100 people from around the world who work as program officers, facilitators, artis, researchers, social entrepreneurs, activists, educators, social communicators and youth-development practitioners.

So far hosted in 6 countries

With the following partners:

Elements of the program

Personal Development

Engage with experiential learning techniques, theatre, and rituals to raise self-awareness and group consciousness. Magnify will hold space for you to become more present with yourself and the relationship building processes behind any community work.

PAR Training

Learn and practice Participatory Action Research (PAR) values, tools and principles to explore our learning question. We’ll discover that community experiences are co-created.

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Learn and get inspired

Living and learning together encourages unexpected friendships and intimate partnerships. We’ll bring in partner organizations based in Montreal to help feedback into our own inquiry and share their own practices/experiences.



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Inside out

Our pedagogy elevates intercultural synergies by explicitly creating space for self-exploration. We overcome boundaries of nationality, race, religion and small-talk through group processes aimed at discovering that boundaries between people are fictional. We’re championing for more genuine connections with others. We explore and practice the kinds of values that are the center of facilitating learning processes with young people.

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Knowledge generation

Participatory action research is the model through which we embark on this collective exploration process. For those wanting to deepen learning and creative research practices in their work, there is no better way to learn than be experiencing it first hand. Through action research we’ll discover that community experiences are co-created.

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Heart-to-heart and face-to-face – youth-to-youth cohabitation:

Face-to-face encounters remain central to collective discovery. We don’t just ‘live under the same roof’, we create a lab for intercultural connection and self-exploration. By the end of our collective exploration, we’ve create the foundation to make long-term collaboration possible.


Hector Aristizábal

Personal Development Trainer

Hector is psychotherapist and theatre practitioner who has combined over 30 years of experience working with Theatre of the Oppressed, Rituals and Storytelling to create spaces for healing. In 2000 he founded ImaginAction to help people use the transformative and healing power of theatre in communities around the world. He has travelled extensively to war­torn and post conflict areas such as Afghanistan, Ukraine, Guatemala, his native Colombia, Syria, Palestine Northern Ireland and has worked with diverse groups dealing with traumatic experiences (HIV+/AIDS, end of life, prisoners, gang violence, torture survivors, refugees). His work reflects his own personal search for what he calls ‘finding the medicine in the wound’ and it reflect his interest in the creation of healing rituals tapping into ancestral practices.

Hector will be guiding the group through our 3-day personal development course.

Kirsten Williams

Participatory Action Research Trainer

Kirsten works at the nexus between youth-led development, participatory action research and nonprofit management. Through co-founding Recrear, Kirsten has been working to blend experiential education with creative research. She co-designed Recrear’s youth-led Participatory Action Research methodology and has implemented it with various different groups in over 10 countries.

In her research work, she’s explored topics from youth participation among Afro-Ecuadorians, to socio-economic inclusion of young people in Bolivia, to the program evaluation practices of INGOs in London. Her research around civil society building and nonprofit management has also led to the design of Recrear’s short courses for organizations and universities.

Gioel Giacchino

Participatory Action Research Trainer

Gioel is in continual pursuit of connection with others. She spends a lot of time thinking about deepening relationships across cultures and sectors. As the Director of Research at Recrear, she loves finding creative and meaningful ways to learn from young people and practitioners. Recrear’s projects have taken her from Cuba to Bangladesh, Malawi and beyond.

In 2012, Gioel was accepted as a Fellow with the Jeanne Sauvé Public Leadership Program to further explore what sustainability could look like within a youth-led organization. Since then she has continued to critically look at the behaviours and practices that manifest in civil society. Gioel is currently a PhD candidate at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) in Brighton, UK. Through a case study of Colombian youth organizations, Gioel’s PhD project explores how different funding models affect organizational culture as well as the quality of social organizations’ internal and external relationships.

Montreal, Canada

We’re excited to be back in Montreal for this edition! The city is bursting to full with community-led initiatives and people pursuing a host of different arts-based methods to engage youth. We’re especially proud to host the residency program at the beautiful Jeanne Sauvé House.

The Jeanne Sauvé House is a stunning four-floor house in the heart of Montreal’s ’Golden Square Mile’ District. The house comes complete with:

  • Two large board rooms
  • A workshop space
  • Lounge
  • A modern Kitchen with 4 Stations
  • 14 ensuite rooms


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We are happy to offer advice and consultation for how to fundraise. The earlier you apply, the better! Spots are filled on a rolling basis and the deadline to apply is February 15th.


  • Two weeks food and lodging at the jeanne Sauvé Fundation in Montreal
  • Ground transport via bikes
  • A personal development course facilitated by world-renowned Theatre of the Oppressed parctitioner: Hector Aristizabal
  • Training in Participatory Action Research by Recrear’s experienced international trainers/researchers
  • Intensive workshops and lectures led by subject experts, and program relevant cultural activities

By becoming an institutional partner you receive:

  • A comprehensive toolkit and best practices generated by a global community of practitioners to bring back to your organization
  • A network of practitioners and partners interested in participatory action research and youth-led development
  • The organization’s logo on all RecrearMagnify promotional material and recognition at final gala and on social media
  • Spotlight piece on what your organization is doing around youth

Does not include:

  • Flights
  • Insurance
  • VISA costs
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We strive to select a very diverse group for the program  to learn as much as possible from each other. Young professionals interested in participatory research and/or community development, representatives from NGOs and other institutions interested in our model, students, artists interested in transforming their creative techniques in research methods… the list is long!

If you have read about our work and are excited about Recrear, you should most definitely apply. We are looking for people from all sort of backgrounds with a passion for international and community development.

Submit your application: You apply to the Magnify by a written application, through which we try to get to know you are little better. The application is followed up by an informal interview with one of our staff members. If everything goes well, you are ready to pack your bags and get ready for an intercultural adventure.

Schedule a quick Skype Interview: If we think you would be a good match for us, you will receive an email from our recruiting team within 10 days from your application and you will be scheduled for a quick Skype interview. The interview is more of a chat to get to know who you are and to introduce our organization. Don’t be silly and dress up with a tie for your Skype interview (one of our very own did!). We will not ask you to put on your camera, and ties generally may not impress us anyways.

Join our team: You will hear from us within a week from your interview. You will be required to pay a deposit to confirm your participation. By the end of May, we will send you a Welcome Package with all the information you need to pack your suitcase and get in the right state of mind for two weeks of Recrear full-immersion.

There are no available scholarships. However if you are part of an institution that could sponsor your participation, you can send them this Pitch deck.

Applications are open until February 15th. We accept applicants on a rolling basis so we encourage you to apply early.

More questions that we did not answer? Bring it. Email us at [email protected] and we will address it.

We have worked with

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Carleton University
Fondation Jeanne Sauvé
Universidad Andina Simón Bolivar
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Are you our next program partner?

Contact us on [email protected]