Once upon a time, change comes…

Date: 23 August 2013

During the Love2Live Festival in Prague organized by YMCA Europe, 200 YMCA Change Agents from 72 countries came together to meet for the first time, face-to-face.

The journey for these YMCA young leaders has been a long one and their role is to infuse new energy for the organization to be more aligned with the Youth Empowerment Agenda and to advance its impact globally. While many more young leaders have been assigned the role of Change Agent, certain challenges prevented 100% of this group joining the activities in Prague.

From 5the to 9th August, the Change Agents were exposed to training focused on their role in the change process within the global YMCA, Global Citizenship and two major global initiatives -One Million Voices Research and World Council 2014.

A very motivated group maximized the time spent with deep discussions and challenging questions. As this was a genuine change and empowerment process, we came across moments of confusion and frustration as well as high levels of motivation and enthusiasm.  

The programme facilitators were took note of the feedback from the group and made changes to the initial programme in order to meet expectations and create more time for group discussions, bonding and debriefing. The participants clearly appreciated those efforts and recognized the contribution made by assigned facilitators. .

The training, nevertheless, was only part of the event in Prague. The afternoons and evenings were full of activities and the Change Agents had a role to play in interacting and collecting stories of empowerment from the 5,000 participants of the festival.  Several events at the main stage exemplified the YMCA Change Model of Space | Transformation| Impact.

At the opening ceremony two Change Agents delivered a statement to acknowledge the existence of the Change Agent initiative and to stress the relevance of our global movement. During the following days, Change Agents from three geographic regions shared their stories of empowerment using videos they have produced. In the last day, two other representatives of the group were chosen to give an interview on the main stage describing the week of training in Prague and leaving a message motivation and enthusiasm.

The conclusion of the week of Change Agents in Prague was a collective performance of a new YMCA Song specially produced for the occasion. The audience engaged with the Change Agents dancing and singing “Its Time”, the new “YMCA hit”

Are you curious about what took place in Prague? If so, you can see pictures, videos and listen to the new song