My time and experience with The Ubele Initiative is not only about self-development and meeting new people, but also about gaining self-confidence in a multicultural setting. At the very beginning I was introduced to the organizational culture of Ubele and I learnt about all the projects and activities that have thus far been realized and those still in the process of being planned.
I joined the activities of Crop Drop, where along with other volunteers we would segregate and fill colorful bags with seasonal vegetables. Crop Drop is a group of people that give priority to local organic foods, direct trade with the farmers and that support balanced agriculture, which is especially important in the times when big holding companies sell food with a lot of pesticides.
The next project by Ubele that I had the opportunity to learn about is the Wolves Lane Horticultural Centre. It’s a place with greenhouses, a palm house with tropical plants, and artificial pools for fish and turtles. It’s also a meeting place for the local community. As part of this initiative, Ubele organized a Sunday market (Wolves Lane Market), which I had the pleasure to co-organize by advertising it in the social media. I also helped with promotion by inviting people who lived nearby. During the day of this event, I got to know the Jamaican culture, music and amazingly tasty food that was prepared on the spot.
As part of the Job Shadowing project, I took part in many meetings to experience firsthand the work done by the host organization, to gain new knowledge about integration in multicultural settings and to get to know the organizational culture connected with working in different countries. A very important thing was the opportunity to participate in the final MALI Enterprising Leaders (MEL) conference, where all the achievements of the BME Community Assets: People, Places and Next Generation Leadership project were summed up.
During the time spent in the office under the supervision of Yvonne Field – the founder and director of The Ubele Initiative with over 35 years of experience – I was learning skills related to the best practice of working in a multicultural environment.
There was also enough time to discover London.
London is the biggest European city, and there’s always a lot of things happening there. A metropolis that connects millions of people of all the different nations and cultures. During my time in London, I learnt a lot about the country’s current socio-economic situation and I visited many famous places: The Buckingham Palace, The Big Ben, The Tower of London, The Westminster Abbey and The National Gallery.
I would like to extend my thanks to everybody involved for all the care and help in improving my language and management skills, which I will surely make good use of in my work.
My job shadowing was in the frame of the Erasmus+ Programme and financed by it as well.
Article written by Aleksander Kisiel.