Multilateral training course for youth workers, project coordinators in NGO organisations and young agents called 12 STEPS TO TRANSITION took place in Kostanjevica na Krki (Slovenia), from 12 to 20 October 2015. Training was attended by 24 participating partners from eight countries (Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Germany, Hungary, Great Britain and Slovenia). We focused on tools, techniques and principals of the Transition Town models, which inspired individuals, groups and communities throughout the Europe to become active agents of sustainable development by increasing the reliance of renewable resources and local food self supply. We gained insights into examples of good practice from different contexts, both rural and urban, to motivate the processes of self-organisation, self-management, mutual action and sustainable entrepreneurship. All participating members were given the opportunity to share techniques and strategies for development of ‘resilient communities’ – communities, resilient to economic crisis and climate change. The training course also addressed the network of cooperation and expansion/strengthening of connections between sustainable projects, which included self-organisation, community engagement, quarters and organisations throughout Europe.

With the support of non-formal learning methods, learning from experience, introducing best-practice examples, we flourished skills in the following fields:

  • Engagement of local communities, raising the awareness (lectures, presentations, workshops, films); building a model for changes in the community; how to create effective publicity.

  • Development of strategies for collaboration with other organisations, groups in local communities, regions, country; successful partnership cooperation; Organisation and coordination of Skills exchange.

  • Organisation of Open space events and conferences/ creation of Open space structure as self-organising practice of learning and reflection.

  • Development of techniques for creation of sustainable learning community.

  • Evolvement of techniques for the development of Internal transition; strengthening of resilience on personal level, mindfulness, storytelling and visualisation techniques, growth of individual visions, discovering personal aims, passion, weakness, creativity and entrepreneurship.

Exploring through practical workshops, methods of non-formal learning and experiential activities we addressed concerning themes such as climate change, sustainable development and Transition towns. Motivated by highly quality and skilled mentors, participants were stimulated to share their experiences, knowledge, competences.
We developed learning processes through open workshops, organisation of Skills exchange, green building (solar oven), herb spiral, open cooking workshops, natural cosmetics workshop, art and handicraft with recycled materials…
Through activities mentioned above we built a platform for future collaboration, at the same time we also learnt how to empower communities in our own local environments – communities that have been living in harmony and balance with their own environment.