Volunteers’ Voices 1/2013: intercultural learning

 

Editorial: From multicultural to intercultural

Lately, cultural encounters have been a frequent topic of public discussion. Newspapers and other media have told about different experiences from ”cultural crossroads”. These stories have brought up questions that aren’t easy to answer. What kinds of new challenges arise, related to cultural encounters? And how is Finland, constantly turning more and more intercultural?

The basis for cultural mixing is many-sided: in a multicultural world, a number of different cultures live side by side, many times also crossing each other, and build a complex network. Even just one person can be a part of more than one culture. As to the cultures that remain separate, in a restricted environment such as inside the borders of a state, it’s practically inevitable for them to enter in contact with each other. However, what results from that contact is not necessarily obvious.

The multiculturalism of a society could be compared to any other conditions, to which many factors can lead to. Nevertheless, the contemporaneous appearance of cultures doesn’t guarantee communication or cultural exchange. To reach them, conscious will to approach another culture is needed. When the will is reciprocal, real communication and learning can be born.

The theme of this magazine is intercultural learning. It’s one of the core values of ICYE Finland, established by the organization’s board, and also one of the main principles behind international volunteering in general. Volunteering abroad opens one’s eyes to the value and significance of multiculturalism. Leaving for another country to work as a volunteer is a concrete step towards intercultural dialogue, learning and understanding.

I wish you enjoyable moments with the magazine!

Mirjami Ylinen
The Editor of Volunteers’ Voices 2013

In the issue

5 Kutsu Maailmanvaihdon kevätkokoukseen
6 Järjestön uutisia
Teema: Kulttuurienvälinen oppiminen / Theme: Intercultural Learning
8 Silmälasien läpi
10 Intercultural Learning – What does it mean?
12 Silmät auki – Vapaaehtoisen kertomus Keniasta
15 Kulttuurioppimista aitiopaikalta
16 Maailmanvaihdon leirielämää
18 Once Upon a Time in a Village Far Far Away
20 Oppitunteja erilaisuudesta
22 Lärorika möten
25 ICYE around the World: Happy Days in Tokyo
26 Taittajien terveiset
28 Column: Somewhere I Belong
29 Tule mukaan Maailmanvaihdon toimintaan
30 Lehden oimituskunta
31 Tapahtumakalenteri