The Eduk8 programme, ESN’s internal development programme for non-formal education, comprises of 5 events per annum. This summer, from 27th June to 2nd July, the ESN Academy was held in the historic city of Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. ESNers from around Europe gathered to discuss the ever relevant topics of Social Inclusion; specifically gender, migration and disability. ESN UK was fortunate enough to have 5 UK ESNers present, from every level of the ESN spectrum, flying the Union Jack ever so proudly.

The topics covered by the academy are the evermore pressing debates that surround us in daily life and ESN is making strides towards using its expertise, manpower and influence to make change. Many topics were covered by the wonderful Eduk8ers and Facilitators that aimed to educate and inform on these topics via non-formal methods. Particular workshops focused on a variety of themes within this broad topic. Workshops such as Survival in a Multicultural WorldUnited in DiversityBeyond the Binary and Mental Health and Well-being within ESN, allowed representatives to share experiences and seek solutions to issues that regularly arise in the ESN world.

However, with such serious topics and an open space for sharing and feelings comes close friendships and future partnerships that will hopefully last a lifetime. ‘Work hard, play hard’ comes to mind when thinking about the fun that our UK ESNers had whilst participating in the event and social package, exploring the wonderful city of Sarajevo and some delightful renditions of Oasis – Wonderwall by our representatives (yes, there is video proof!). 

In light of this eye-opening event, ESN UK is now planning to become very active within the Eduk8 programme and will certainly be sending ESNers to the Autumn Training 2017 event in Maribor, Slovenia.

Written by Luke Foulkes, Chair of Network Committee