We were pleased to welcome attendees to our Youth and Schools Forum to share experiences on the theme of: Partnerships in a Pandemic. Youth leaders, teachers and educators in Scotland and Malawi were warmly welcomed on the 26th of January 2021.
The event featured spotlights from multiple teachers in both Scotland and Malawi at Primary and Secondary level, speaking about the successes and challenges their partnership has encountered during nearly a year of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Featured speakers from Beath High School, Penicuik High School, St Ronan's Primary School, Mazozo CDSS and Njala & Mapanga Partnership all took part.
Orbis Expeditions shared a travel update from Malawi and reflected on the current situation sharing that "We are all part of one world... it's never been more important to connect as global citizens".
Spotlight speakers were followed by breakout room sessions considering questions such as:
- What was the effect of cancelling planned trips?
- Has it been possible to embrace digital?
- How do you feel about the future of your partnership?
Some takeaways from the event:
- IT training and facilities in both countries for teachers and young people has great potential to improve partnership opportunity and shared global learning
- Social media platforms (not email) work best for communication with Malawi - education could be shared through this medium. This could be then delivered through local radios in Malawi for more equitable access
- The high cost of internet data in Malawi must be considered
- Orbis Expeditions keeping finger to pulse on all travel updates
- Connecting Classrooms now offering funding for 1:1 or cluster digital school partnerships
- Comparing children's experiences of the world under COVID-19 is invaluable for developing empathy and understanding through our shared issues