To Give or to Receive…
In this article, the author analyzes a training course on Initiation to international cooperation which took place in a Senegalese village involving students in the Science, arts and letters program at Collège de Bois-de-Boulogne. According to the author’s experience, the preparation stage prior to departure is crucial. This includes the appropriate training, planning and search for financing and sponsorship as well as the underlying focus on openness to cultures in developing countries and to the world. Once the trainees and support staff were on site, activities focussed on the needs expressed by the village leaders, which provided lessons in solidarity, humanity, ingenuity and recovery. Also discussed in the article are the various questions and a reflection on the commitment, the post-training follow-up, the effects on the host village and the many advantages for people involved in this type of experience. Furthermore, the author suggests several elements to take into account to ensure the success of such projects, underlining the fact that group cohesion is a major factor in this success.
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