“All Aliens" - Step 1 Exchange

The experience of the Exchange named "All Alien" that was held in Benediktbeuern, Germany, was one of those experiences that you couldn't miss. The training course was about immigration, hence, the name "All Alien". This was so, because of the experience of feeling alienated when you are part of a different group or culture.

13 different countries, including Malta, came together to learn what needed to be learnt about migration, conflicts, communication in different cultures, values, stereotypes, prejudices and most importantly human rights. As the group arrived at Benediktbeuern, they where greeted by an Immigration Office game. This was to enable the group to get into the shoes of people immigrating and what trouble they go through.

As the days went by, the group learned many tools that will likely be needed in real life, from team building to the subject about prejudices and stereotypes. The discussions on every subject we talked about in the group where always questioned. We asked: ‘Why do we need them and ‘Do we need them ?'. That's where the group showed what they think about the subject in hand and not to mention our dismay during the visit to "Dachau Concentration Camp" where we witnessed the worst case of Human Rights having been ignored.

All the themes in the training course where given in a fun and interactive way which was really great to keep the group focused on and interested in the subject. It was very interesting to listen to the visions and goals expressed by all the different countries. The countries that participated where Malta, Poland, Belgium, Czech-Republic, UK, Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Italy, Sicily and Montenegro.

Besides these experiences, the training course also consisted of intercultural evenings where those representing their homeland illustrated interesting aspects about their country and food.

On the whole, the experience in Benediktbeuern was really amazing and without a doubt one of those experiences that I will remember and keep in my heart.

Written by Nathan Bezzina (Maltese Participant)