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Foundations for Freedom Newsletter 24 Greencoat Place, London. tel: 020-7798 6000, www.f-4-f.org, F4F@london.mra.org.uk Issue 26, October 2002 In this issue...

Training for Trainers............................. pg. 1 F4F Team changes....................…........pg. 2 Caux 2002 impressions.....………… pg. 3-4

F4F Calendar of Events..………..................... pg. 4 From the Treasurer……………..……….………pg. 4

Training for Trainers at St. Katherine’s Parmoor Twenty three people from around the globe (twelve nations represented), and a faculty of seven gathered at a beautiful old convent for ten days worth of training starting on the 27th of August. This course was the first of its kind, and as a result of the success of the course it will probably not be the last. The participants were in two groups, each group having alternative days of training on material and then on technique. Participants consisted of those who have expressed interest in learning more about the course and Foundations for Freedom, and also a good proportion of people from the region, in which F4F has been working wishing to pick up skills to help them continue the work themselves. Phoebe Gill and Bhav Patel ran half of the course, dealing specifically with training, facilitation and guided discussion. They worked hard and participants’ rewards were significant; building confidence on solid foundations of basic group-work techniques. Kees Scheijgrond, David Curtis, Mike Lowe, and Erik Andren were all present at different times to guide the groups through a quarter of the course each. Erik and I had sweated over a reworking of the original material, and produced an

easier version for use in the training – this is called ‘Changing Course’ (or CC). There is too much course material to really get intimate with over a period of ten days (four actual days of applied w o r k ) . H o w e v e r, the basics understanding and methodology of working the material to a point of presentation was achieved by all on the course. The outcome of the course was: a positively charged and empowered group of future course presenters, a host of new friendships, a massive amount of paperwork to be written up into a comprehensive report, and a sense that F4F may become the resource that people need. It became clear that this was the first occasion when ‘we’ were not taking something to ‘them’, but that as a whole group we were sharing something equally. Very healthy lessons. More time needs to be spent working on the course material, and taking part in courses as they happen. When participants are confident, they will then lead a course with an experienced trainer supporting them, following which they may run them ‘solo’. Nick Foster

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F4F team changes. Look! We’ve got new people... I’m Gabrijela Leovic, a Croatian, born and raised in Germany. My job as a conference interpreter first brought me to Caux in 1999, a life-changing summer, which made “don’t dream your life, live your dream” a reality for me by giving me the opportunity to meet and later work with the Latin American organisation Gente Que Avanza. Ever since, the signposts on the path of my life have pointed towards giving more consciously the immense love that I’ve been blessed with throughout my life back to the world, so my decision to work with IC is mainly inspired by this commitment. I believe that F4F can open people’s eyes and hearts for a deeper meaning in life, which is so necessary in the East and the West. Gabrijela Leovic

My name is Oleg Ermurati and most probably you know me or at least have heard my name. I have got to know the ideas of IC (back then – MRA) in the summer of 1998 through a Visiting Course conducted by the Foundations for Freedom. This was my first experience with any type of course and I was really impressed – and one of the main outcomes from that course was that I found friends. Since then I was involved in different initiatives and activities conducted by F4F or our group in Moldova, Ukraine, Russia or Switzerland. I have spent my last year with ‘Action for Life’, which was a 10-month program inspired by the ideas of IC/MRA and that travelled through 11 Asian countries. Now I am here as the result of my commitment to and interest in what F4F stands for.

...just as some fly away...

I fly away in two days time since now – the moment I am writing this. The phrase “fly away” needs, however, some unpacking. I do fly away from F4F London office. Many things will change – food and time of the meals, the language I speak and also people I speak to, my daily routine and many many others. One thing stays and rather than flying away I come closer to it. It is the mission of Foundations for Freedom. I have worked with F4F for six months, a short period they say. The work and all the life it brought alongside has made me see clearer many “silver threads” that I want to follow. The thread of detachment challenges me a lot. I found myself attached to my country and its culture “how can one possibly invite you to dinner in a month’s time?” I just couldn’t understand. I found myself attached to my family, my friends, and my computer. I can see now that detachment gives free way to true love. When attachments disappear, choice, nevertheless, is still there. The choice is made and I am very much looking forward to going home to Moldova. Vitalie Cracan.

Oleg Ermurati

As many of you may already know, I am leaving the position of F4F Co-ordinator. This is not farewell, however, because I hope very much to stay in touch and even participate in F4F activities again sometime, somewhere. But it is a good opportunity for me to say what a challenging and rewarding experience these two years have been for me. I am so grateful to so many of you who have supported me in doing this work, hosted me in your country, participated in and given your all at F4F events…I could go on and on... I am heading back home, which is exciting, because I have not lived at home for over seven years. Even though I will be physically far away, I am only an e-mail away (cibellik27@hotmail.com) and I will keep in touch. Best wishes and blessings to those I was lucky enough to meet and also to those I have yet to meet but hope to sometime in the future. Kristen Cibelli We hope both Vitalie and Kristen will find success in whatever they do next and they will always be in our hearts!!! 2


Caux 2002 - what was it all about? Caux Spirit...

Hello my dear friends, my name is Caux Spirit and I think you already know the place I am from. The wind told me you are in need of the impressions of summer 2002. That is the reason of this letter to you. Years ago I was born in Mountain House (Switzerland) by a group of people who called themselves Moral Re-Armament. I grew up in an atmosphere of moving souls and hearts. I witnessed the incredible changes in people’s lives and could see things that nobody could, so personal they were. Nations reconciled. Lives improved. People, among whom I lived, re-armed so many individuals and groups with the new moral. They re-armed themselves because the more one changes the more one grows. It was a long time ago. My name was constantly mentioned there until the year 2002. My “parents” who loved and cared about me so much, forgot or in purpose didn’t tell the new generation of MRA about me. So, at first, without being introduced I was afraid to show myself to the newcomers. I decided to hide until they would notice my traces everywhere and would search for me. But time flew and unfortunately I appeared to be so quiet that nobody even got the idea about my existence. They wanted to create a new spirit younger and more independent then I was. It scared me so much. And not really about myself but about the work and love of all the previous generations, who raised and formed me in the House. All of them put a

(A series of reflections)

bit of their hearts into my being. So, that time I tried my best to show myself up so that young people could notice me and we could become friends, but their eyes and hearts were closed, I failed to knock at the doors of their souls. The name of the organisation that brought me up had changed from the Moral Re-Armament to the Initiatives of Change. It was timelybecause my life had changed and the initiators (initiatives?) of it were you. You, the young generation that was so busy with your own small troubles and conflicts that you didn’t notice the old, kind and wise Caux Spirit, which loves you so much... But as the old song says, “If your life expects some trouble, when you worry, you make it double, don’t worry, be happy.” I do not worry; I rely on my old friends from Moun-

tain House and on those absolute principles that you all know so well. Moreover I am deeply sure that God gives us the best we deserve in its time. So, my great hope is that we’ll meet next year and become good friends. I’ll help you to grow and change the same way as my “par-

ents” helped me. With all my mountain love, Sasha Shimina as Caux Spirit

Change Status: Needed...

After the time spent in Caux, this year, it appears obvious to me that the reconciliation concept is valid for an extremely large number of states, societies, and nations. Especially after watching the movie about Irene Loure, I understood that there is a quite clear distinction between good and bad, right and wrong. The uncertainty that sometimes appears when we don’t seem to know what is right or wrong is just a pretext to justify the wrong or it may be the mistaken path that our ego chooses to follow. In the moment, in which one proved to be honest and made the right choice and decision, there is a place for belief, persistence and courage. I realised that the actions exclusively motivated by the material purposes are, indeed, too small in order to make a person grow and to make one see as far as possible, not being blinded by the illusory things and problems, which have a tendency to appear and disappear rather often. It is very important for me to know what I want, but in this context I realised it is vital not to neglect other people and other global problems, which can be also my problems (and most probably they concern me either directly or indirectly). (continued on page 4)

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(continued from page 3)

After all, we are equal parts of a whole, despite the fact that we are from different countries, speaking different languages, being of various races. It also made me think of my country – Moldova. There are many things to be done in Moldova and for Moldova. In general I would say we need many changes in order to come out from poverty that surrounds us. The words that came to my mind, when I was thinking of this, were Mentality, Change, and Belief. The truth is many people suffer in Moldova. The ignorance is too strong. The notion of change did not find its roots here yet. The people do not know which way to go. That is why we have a lot of work. Violeta Frimu

Heaven on Earth Who said that there couldn’t be heaven on earth? When I arrived to the house on the Alpine Mountain I had the impression that I am in heaven (this is what they say when talking about the most beautiful places on earth where one feels free and happy). I found something special in the clean air, beautiful landscape and warm souls of the people gathered from all over the world. I liked the way conferences were organized; nobody was left without occupation, everybody had chances to express their opinions and be listened.

Caux, in my opinion, is a school of life, where one, consciously or unconsciously, changes from inside. More than this, once you’ve breathed the Caux air, your life starts a process of change, because the spirit of Caux remains inside you. Caux gifted me peace of soul, made me think deeper, and try not to take hasty decisions. But the thing I value the most is that I have found again belief in future. Claudia Botnaru

Work from my heart Caux… A secret place that is discovered by each of us in our own way. At the beginning I was a little bit afraid… Such a big house, so many people… But I was lucky to receive help from my friends. I wanted to get more involved in the life of Mountain House, to feel that I really belonged to that place. So I tried to work and give all I could. It was a real pleasure for me to serve people in the mornings. I understood there how important it is not just to work, but to work with pleasure, from my heart. I thought that there I would reflect more on my life and my problems. Unexpectedly, I didn’t find time for that. But I was feeling inner peace… When I came home I was full of energy, full of desire to do something. I think I was motivated by what they call ‘Caux spirit’.

Dear Reader, We would like to thank everyone who has contributed to making this issue of the F4f Newsletter. If you think that someone else you know should get this newsletter or if you have any suggestions, please contact Oleg Ermurati at oleg@london.iofc.org. Thank you.

Watch out for the next issue in December 2002!!!

Liliana Robu

News from the Treasurer... At the end of a full summer for F4F, there is much to be grateful for. Expenses in the last three months have been over £33,000. We were able fully to cover our costs at Caux, and the “matching funding” made available by The Oxford Group this year, plus participants’ contributions, more than covered the costs of the Training Trainers programme. Now we are looking forward, and have drawn up a budget for the coming 12 months, until September 2003. This shows a need to raise a further £35,000 by that time. We envisage that this would pay for a programme including: - A further eight F4F courses in East Europe, which would also give the recently trained trainers a chance to practice their skills; - Publication of an F4F annual report; - A major regional meeting bringing together those in the region who are in touch with F4F and IC; - Participation in Caux 2003; - An expanded programme of support and follow-up visits to teams in East Europe. What it does not cover is any further expansion of the programme and the team who carry it out. This is a real possibility, and may mean revising the budget upwards in due course. We will report on new developments in subsequent Newsletters.

F4F Diary Oct 9 – 18 F4F course 1 and 2 in Novosibirsk (Russia) Oct 27 – Nov 3 F4F course for young politicians in Kiev (Ukraine) Oct - Nov Miles and Janet Paine visiting Romania, Moldova and Ukraine 4


Oct 2002