Guest post by Ahmed Hamza, Program Coordinator, WES, Tunisia
The WES team and partner organizations gathered from San Francisco, Tunis, Kairouan, Sfax, Gafsa, Sousse and Zarzis for a six-day Training of Trainers (TOT) in Tunis, January 6-11, 2013.
The second half of the TOT included two workshops by trainer and social media expert Beth Kanter –the Networked Nonprofit and Social Media for Women Entrepreneurs. Beth is an impressive trainer and knows how to effectively incorporate lots of fun, interesting, and interactive activities into the training. She used a variety of participatory training techniques including a fishbowl exercise, speed geeking, variations of world café and stone soup to engage participants.
Working with Beth Kanter was a great opportunity for me to learn from her and also practice the training skills I had gained as a Training Coordinator for the E-Mediat program.
In the Networked Nonprofit workshop, participants created network maps for their organizations and thought through their social media strategies to achieve the objectives of the WES centers. The network mapping exercise helped participants to realize the value of creating online and off-line networks and sharing skills and resources across the WES network.
The Social Media for Women Entrepreneurs TOT exposed the participants to the strategic use of different social media platforms including Facebook, blogs and LinkedIn.
I had the opportunity to facilitate a small group exercise for ‘creating blog content’. I used a participatory technique to help participants to think through content for blog posts. The group decided on a blog post topic and each participant was expected to write the opening sentence for the post. Each participant then circulated their opening sentence to others in the group who kept adding sentences to create a full post. The exercise allowed each one to contribute to the post and the final product reflected different viewpoints. I was introduced to this technique at the Arab Regional Forum for Democracy, organized in Jordan in September 2012.
The TOT participants were an amazing group of people full of joy, smiles, and great hopes for the country, and the future of Tunisia’s Women. The interactive, participatory training techniques were appreciated by the participants and they enjoyed the lively sessions conducted in the training room and on the beach by the Mediterranean Sea!
I really enjoyed working with all the trainers and the IIE Team.
This training further strengthened my faith in the power of the Tunisian women and their capacity to participate in the shaping of a stronger and more creative new Tunisia.
Long live the WES Women’s Network!