11 November 2008
Partnering with the School of Communication Foundations
In the middle of October Martial spent some time in Rwanda. It's a little overdue, but here's his version of events:
"The first aim of the trip to YWAM Kigali was to teach for a week on their first School of Communication Foundations(SCF). The school was designed to equip students with public-speaking skills and the writing of research papers. At the end of the 12 weeks students should be able to complete a 15 page research paper on an Unreached People Group(UPG) of their choice. They need to write on three 'spheres' as they relate to that particular group of people. The first sphere is family, with the student choosing two others spheres on which to focus their research. They will also research the worldview of this UPG.
I was invited by Susi Shar, the school leader from YWAM Burtigny, Switzerland. YWAM Burtigny has long had a focus on communication teaching and more recently they have decided to develop training partnerships with YWAM bases in Africa - which is good news for us! My topic for the week was "General Research Paper Writing" and I was asked to bring a biblical perspective to the subject. To be able to teach on research, I had to do my homework, my own research paper! After some weeks of preparing, I was able to pile some information into my 'internal hard drive' by doing a thorough research project on UPGs, gathering some information to be able to better help the students. If I was to teach the students how to write a thesis and a hypothesis and to support those with the strongest argument in an essay, I would have to give them some practical hints; it took me some solid preparation time.
The teaching went well, according to the feedback I received from students and staff. The only thing I struggled with was addressing a group mix genders and constantly referring to them as 'guys' which offended some the girls! Don't forget, I learned English all over the world ... I guess I picked up 'guys' from my American friends :-)"
We are hoping to continue to develop more training partnerships with YWAM centers like the one in Burtigny, Switzerland. In this way we hope to develop more communicators to help us serve YWAM's work across Africa.