The encounters that change the world – ten years of intercultural exchanges for high school students in Serbia was the title of the conference organised on 3 November 2018 by Interkultura Serbia to mark the tenth anniversary of the organisation. The 140 attendees included AFS volunteers, returnees and host families, school principals and teachers, a number of representatives of like-minded organisations such as the American Council, YFU Serbia and Erasmus+/Tempus. Joining the festivities were Andrea Orizio, the chief of OSCE mission to Serbia and Sergio Monti, the deputy chief of mission of Italy to Serbia. Also present were Roberto Ruffino and Eduardo Assed, as well as the other international guests which included EFIL secretary general Paul Claes, vice-chair of AFS Denmark Anton Boelskifte, AFS Denmark national director Ulrik Wehner, AFS Germany vice-chair Paul Steiner, AFS Hungary program director Diana Rosta, AFS India Delhi chapter president Zahra Ramish Rizvi and AFS Russia regional coordinator Irina Voilokova.
Special advisor at the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development Aleksandar Pajic gave an opening speech, followed by the president of Interkultura Serbia Ivana Gazikalovic Pavlovic who spoke about the events and accomplishments of the past ten years. Also on the agenda were a presentation by Eduardo Assed on The Role of International Exchange Programs in Developing Global Competence and an inspiring talk by Roberto Ruffino on “Why AFS?” which included both the one-hundred-year long history of AFS and its role as an educational organisation today. Dunja Zivanovic, English language teacher at Belgrade University, had a presentation on Language Learning in the Context of International High School Student Exchange, and principal of Takovski Ustanak High School from Gornji Milanovac Biljana Nisavic spoke about Interkultura and the School. Ulrik Wehner and Diana Rosta had presentations about their national organisations. In the last session of the conference the participants worked in focus groups to come up with ideas and suggestions for the years to come. The conference was followed by a gala dinner for all the participants.
For more: [email protected]