The title of this training made me almost scared to apply. “Young Leaders for Positive Change” sounded as if I would spend the entire week with a group of  testosterone filled men and Alpha-females.

Challenging myself to get out of my comfort zone, I applied and got accepted to participate in Minsk, Belarus from 6 until 13 April 2014. Lucky for me, my prejudices were completely wrong.

During this week in Minsk, we studied leadership in the broadest sense. We looked at what leadership actually is, how it is placed within organizations, presentation skills, and what role we took in a group project. We had a game where we had to create a spaceship organization and had to divide the tasks amongst the team members. Of course, they always put us under time pressure so that your communication skills would really be put to a test. We were challenged a lot and at the end of the day often very tired. However, we scraped together our last ounce of energy and had informal sessions to study each other’s culture during the evenings.

During the week we had a lot of very interesting discussions and heated debates with the Belarusian, Georgian, Romanian, Macedonian, German, Hungarian, Danish and Dutch participants. I am very glad that I took this great opportunity to learn more about myself and others, and I had a great time while doing it. I loved meeting all of these very interesting people and the trainers knew a lot about their topic. I will definitely go to another training if I get the chance.

Written by Melanie Peters