Here is my summary of this Edgeryders journey I started in October.
Before the event
I started from the scratch(no community) and went straight into building community and organizing the workshop. Took me some time to figure out which medium to use to reach people. Facebook and personal approach were the ones I thought would work best and that’s what I did.
Have to say in my contract we agreed this was a part time job but it was far from that. I worked a lot. Serbian people are very very sceptic and when something new comes they instantly do not trust it nor like it. I guess that’s understandable considering what this people have been trough for the past 3 decades.
My idea was to reach only those I considered to be genuinely interested in this type of community. And to bring interesting people in workshop, especially when it comes to speakers because I needed those who people trust.
This is a completely new experience for me. I had never before organized an event or been in a community or been facilitator at the event.
Huge thanks goes to @Noemi and @jasen_lakic , cause I don’t know how would this be a thing without them. We had a month and a half to put it all together. It was intense.
Around 25 people registered for the workshop and 17 actually came.
After short introduction Noemi came up with the idea how to “make” all participants relaxed and comfortable to speak. We played a game and I think that was the key for successful workshop.
Everyone had fun, everyone participated and talked. Atmosphere was friendly, as if everyone knew each other. It was easygoing and the energy was really good. Participants said it would be fine if it lasted for 2 days
All of the participants were confused by the Edgeryders concept and had no idea what is going on. But they showed up anyways which is a great indicator that we need stuff like this here in Serbia.
The whole event was more like introducing Edgeryders and getting to know each other, there was not a specific topic that was mainly discussed, which is fine I think.
After the event
Feedback is positive. Everyone had a great time, we laughed, we discussed, we learned and all left facility feeling inspired. Workshop was different than those we are used to here. Everyone liked that it was interactive and that everyone participated. I feel as if people are sick of just listening to those who always speak and they sit and listen.
Participants were pretty heterogeneous and we all liked that. Tho it was a strong feeling that there is something we all have in common regardless to what we do and who we are.
How did i do
I am pretty satisfied. Considering it is my first job in this kinds of stuff. Still I have a lot to learn about building a community, organizing the events and get into peoples minds to optimize the effect and the results.
As a facilitator I was pretty shy and nervous
I am happy with my communication abilities and how easy it is for me to make people trust me, I didn’t know that before.
The whole process and stepping into unknown was pretty stressful but I liked it. This is exactly what I wanted and needed.
What have I learned
-From Edgeryders- I learned that there are people who actually work on these topics and this area as a job. As I said earlier I didn’t have any contact with this before. I learned how much I have to learn about society and how to be useful. I met some very interesting people in this process and that is my goal. Creating my network of great people.
-At the workshop- Learned about technical stuff about workshop organizing. How to approach. what is important, how to relax people…
Plus I learned that there are people here who really care about themselves and their society, they are not those who are brainwashed and they have great ideas and great enthusiasm.
What I think our next steps should be
People are sick of listening to some whit great spirit and ideas talking to them and telling them how they should do something. If we want these people who showed interest to stay with us we need to give a few examples of how to do things, how to get in action. We are not used to this. We need examples. Telling them “Gather around something you consider important for you” will do nothing. We are society who is deeply depressed and we lack of enthusiasm and initiative.
We need at least 2 small events we will organize to give an example and make them open their minds and think what could they gather around by themselves.
Maybe exchange of books, or clothing(we have that going on every winter)… Anything to make them do not forget why we are here.
It’s even hard to get their stories on the platform, tho Jasen and I thought that’s gonna be easy.
They simply have to see things going on. Talking will get us nowhere.
I am pretty sure this report is not done. I will add things.
Thank you everyone!