Last Friday 29th of May we had our third virtual event of the year. This time Ali Gardner and Lowis Charfe spoke about Social Pedagogy and the global crisis, the event was co-hosted by Bianka Lang, current SPPA trustee, and we had an incredible audience of 62 people from all over the world! We are so excited to see that the interest in these events is growing and we were so happy to see people connecting from Canada, South Africa, Malta and Poland.
In this webinar, Ali and Lowis focused on the role of social pedagogy during the crisis. They introduced the idea of Liminal Spaces and highlighted the relevance of Ethical leadership, they also linked this to the Diamond model and the Head, Heart and Hands approach. Later on, they invited the attendees to think about the part we are all playing and how we are shaping the response to the crisis.
This virtual space was a great opportunity to explore and reflect on the changes, opportunities and challenges, during the lockdown, as well as to think about our hopes and expectations for the future. Some of the topics that emerged from these conversations were: the challenges of balancing the professional, personal and private; taking up new roles supporting others; the lack of physical, in-person connection with people and the impact this situation has had both emotionally and professionally. Some attendees also spoke about the benefits of online communication tools to ease stress and workloads and how these means of communication seem to be preferred by young people. Moreover, there were comments about how this change in communication might help to break down the barrier between professionals and the rest of society, while other attendees highlighted the demonstrations of compassion and support that the crisis triggered.
These conversations allowed to see the different ways in which people have lived this crisis and that it has not been the same for everyone; there has been a negative impact that has affected people in diverse ways, but there are also some windows for positive changes.
There was a very interesting discussion about people’s needs and the importance of listening and asking rather than assuming what they need. This led to a critical reflection about the notion of vulnerability and to questions such as who is considered vulnerable and why. Some of the participants also commented that “vulnerability can also be a strength”.
There were also powerful messages from the attendees reminding us about the significance of creating a compelling counter-narrative and do not forget that we are connected to each other, we are all valuable, and we all have something to contribute!
Finally, Ali and Lowis shared an uplifting and fun video ‘From key workers to all keyworkers’ that will surely make you smile! You can view it here.
Our next meeting will take place on the 3rd of July (time and topic to be confirmed soon). Please do stay connected with us via social media to know more about other events.
*We are running these webinars free of charge, however, we will very much appreciate any voluntary contribution. A big and sincere thank you to those who have already donated. If you would like to donate you can do so here.
Your SPPA team