Eva's Brussels Blog: enjoying her mission at the European Scout Office
My name is Eva M. Haunerová. I am a Czech Scout and came to Belgium four months ago to work in the Brussels Office of the European Region of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM). This happened because my National Scout Organisation Junák – svaz skautů a skautek (The Association of Scouts and Guides of the Czech Republic) is partner of a project of the European Scout Region supported by the Youth in Action Programme of the European Union. Junák had been selected to be a part of this project and I was given the opportunity to work as an ‘Assistant of External Relations and Funding’ in the Brussels Office for six months. The project requires me to be a support of the Office but also a resource for activities of Junák. You can read my previous stories on this website to find out how I arrived and settled down.
This short photo report shows you more about my Scout adventures here in Brussels. It covers the period from the end of March until now (end of June).
At the end of March I had an opportunity to join the 4-days Scouting for All - Training of the European Region Pool of Consultants (Diversity Event I) which took place in Brussels. During this event, I received a lot of interesting information on diversity and inclusion and met a group of great friendly people!
In April, I was helping with administrative matters of Agora 2014 (a peer-lead networking event for Rovers) and at the end of that month I joined the 45 participants in Strasbourg, France. One of the planned activities during Agora 2014 was a group visit of the European Parliament. Quite impressive! In the rest of time I was responsible for a photo report from the event and for some administrative follow-up (travel reimbursements, etc.). But of course there were plenty of other jolly moments with other participants.
In May, I joined a three-day camp with a local Scout Group from Brussels at Abbaye de Brialmont. After all, you don't want to miss the exciting activities of grass roots level Scouting! We were camping on the grounds of the abbey, playing a lot, enjoying outdoor activities and spent memorable moments around the evening camp fire.
On 17 May, during the open day at the Brussels based EU Institutions, I took advantage of visiting the Berlaymont building, home of the European Commission, the executive body of the European Union. Amongst other things, I visited the Schuman Conference Room where I joined interpreters and tried out myself what it means to simultaneously interpret from one European language to the other.
During the second half of May I travelled to the Kandersteg International Scout Centre (KISC) situated in the heart of the Swiss Alps and attended the annual planning meeting of the European Scout Office Team. We discussed many different topics, reviewed the previous year’s activities, draft next year’s budget, developed future action plans for the Regional Office; and in the late afternoons we took the opportunity to discover the wonderful surroundings of Kandersteg and enjoyed less formal moments with our colleagues.
On 27 May, shortly after having returned back to Brussels from Switzerland, we welcomed more than 40 guests for the official opening of the new premises of the Brussels Office of the European Scout Office. We are now located a lot closer to offices of other youth organisations and in the vicinity of many European institutions. Incidentally, our colleagues from the Europe Office WAGGGS had moved to the same address just a couple of weeks earlier.
On 16-18 June I joined sixteen participants from twelve European countries at the first Fundraiser Network Meeting of the European Scout Region in Brussels. This three-days meeting aimed at supporting fundraising activities of NSOs and NSAs by sharing best practices, building partnerships and acquiring new knowledge from external experts and the business sector.
Being a member of the European Scout office gives me a lot of inspiration for my personal, professional and Scout life. Living in a foreign country is always an enriching experience in many ways: meeting new people, acquiring new knowledge and skills, discovering new places; all this brings me new experience and broadens my horizon.
(c) Images: Eva M. Haunerová, European Scout Office 2014