Europe: DONE 015 and DONE M1 Reflections
By ESGD [Yebuny Hanna (Educational Director) Julius Alexy (DONE Director) Patrick Hanna (DONE Co-director)]: We are very pleased to announce that DONE 2015 and DONE Mission One 2016 have been successfully completed! We want to congratulate the graduates once again for all their effort and achievements and wanted to pass on a summary report to all blessed families with some participant reflections.
DONE is a training program that offers participants down-to-earth education and care in aspects of building their relationship to God and furthering their understanding of life. Through the varied schedule and opportunities, young 2nd generation are given the chance to make their spiritual life and knowledge lasting and real, as well as creating strong bonds of friendship and learning useful skills and wisdom for life. We believe that Blessed children need to have a healthy understanding of who they are, seeing their potential and role in taking a lead to develop new environments wherever they go and whatever they do. In line with this, DONE aims to provide participants with the opportunity to strengthen their confidence and maturity so that they can believe they can make a positive difference in this world.
Running from September 27th – December 21st, 2015, the DONE program this year had 26 participants with 7 full-time staff and managing ESGD staff. The participant group was very mixed with 13 brothers and 13 sisters, as well as 13 Europeans and 13 non-Europeans (from America, New Zealand, Australia and Japan). We also want to take the chance to thank our 7 full-time team leaders once again, as we attribute much of this year’s success to the stability, leadership and constant care that came from them.
Outside of the kick-off and Graduation workshops, the schedule consisted of FR trainings and education periods with lecturers including William Haines, Frank Kaufmann, Geros Kunkel, David Hanna, Carlos Badosa, Ando Rodrigues, Armando Lozano, ESGD staff and other 2nd Gen guest speakers. There were many valuable diamonds and nuggets of wisdom that resonated with us all, particularly from the Divine Principle content, the Blessing workshop and the internal guidance given by elder 2nd gen. Despite just being together for 3 months, many participants shared the renewed hope and confidence they had found in themselves and for their future. As a BC community of brothers and sisters, we were reminded of our potential, linked to our identity and our purpose in life. And closely connected to this, there was a consistent theme through all the education that responsibility is the key to freedom and that no matter what we do or what we cannot do, we can always create value if we live to love others.
A group of 16 participants and 5 full- time staff then continued onto the DONE Mission One program (DM1), which ran from February 2nd – May 5th, 2016. This involved longer FR training period, an education period including leadership training, a Second Generation Educator’s training, a mountain challenge in the High Tatras and a range of service projects combining a project in an orphanage and at various heritage sites as well as running programs and activities in schools. This then culminated in the DM1 members taking full responsibility for directing and organizing the Eastern European Spring HARP workshop that ran from April 29th to May 1st. Under the support of ESGD staff, the DM1 participants successfully took up positions as Director, MCs, Sports coordinators, Team leaders and Kitchen staff. We were very impressed by the initiative, responsibility and care shown by each of them and many young HARP members who attended were very impacted by the weekend. The DONE mission one program provided the opportunity to build upon the foundation of their DONE education; to grow deeper, to go further, and to develop a more loving environment together.
Upon graduating, many of DONE and DONE DM1 participants have applied to help staff the ESGD European summer workshops, which we see as a great contribution!
On behalf of all of us as staff, we want to thank all of our friends, family members, educators and wider connections, who supported the programme and the participants throughout these past months.
Registrations for DONE 2016-17 are now open, so for more information, or to apply for next year’s program, please visit www.esgd.org
We asked some participants for a short reflection of their experience:
A participant from Belgium: “DONE has helped me to be more clear about who I really am; a unique child of God, and that’s where my real value lies. DONE created an environment for me to discover this myself. Before I went to DONE I was very scared of taking initiative, but DONE encouraged me to take responsibility and made me aware of my potential. It’s all a matter of heart, of becoming the most loving version of yourself. I realized that we can all be positive influencers, and that God can work through us when we take the first step. It made me hopeful that together we can make a better, more loving world.”
A participant from Germany: “On DONE I found out I want to live this life, being a 2nd Gen, following the path of my parents.
I thought I had known before that the Principle is the only truth that can make me happy, but still – living this life always seemed to be a daunting task I would have to take, sacrificially.
Finally, I feel free now because I genuinely desire to understand the Principle fully, because this is the one beautiful thing I sincerely want to do.”
A participant from Australia:“DONE has allowed me to discover for myself what my purpose in life is and has given me plenty of tools to create a meaningful everyday life. Some of the good habits I was able to create were a sense of self-awareness, hopefulness, attentiveness and perseverance. I believe that one of my most important achievements on DONE/DM1 is finally being able to be honest with myself, and therefore honest and open with others. Not only did it help me grow as an individual and discover my own strengths and limitations, but it also gave me the strength to create and develop deep and honest relationships with those both on DONE and back at home. I am forever grateful for this experience.”
A participant from Australia: “DONE gave me many tools, which I can apply to live my life with more strength and awareness. Amongst the most important things DONE has allowed me to do is to differentiate what the inessentials in life are. They were hindering me from being the person I want to be and I developed more trust in myself to take bold steps to cut them out and march forward in my life with more clarity and strength. I am grateful for much needed education that enables us to be much happier people.”
A participant from Germany: “Through DONE I could learn that God wants me to be myself. Being yourself means to bring out all the good characteristics which were given to you by God. It is to let your inner light shine. The staff created a space where we could take the initiative and work on ourselves based on our own creativity. Being yourself also means to accept where you come from, no matter what that means for you. Through the love and care we received, we could grow the confidence in ourselves to build something out of our own creativity and conviction.
I also learnt that God plays an important role in our daily life. It is about giving meaning to this normality in our lives that will make our life meaningful. He wants to be part of the normal decisions we take in our lives. The small ones and the big ones. It is up to us, if God is part of our lives or not. We have the power to create our own reality. Let it be a reality, where the ones we love can come closer to God. Let’s create an environment where we can all come closer to God.”
A participant from Austria: “Six months of DONE and DONE Mission1 have come to an end – a journey which helped me to take steps forward in my personal growth and in my relationship with God and True Parents. Even though it was not always an easy journey, I’m grateful to every moment as I could deepen my understanding of my roots and my identity as a daughter of God and of how important it is to take our lives and our mission seriously, as every decision has an impact on our future generations. Staying hopeful and keeping integrity no matter what so that God has space to work in our lives – this was one of the most precious lessons for me.”
A participant from New Zealand: “DONE and DM1 helped me to build my faith and hope in a natural way. I started to see what it was that God wanted for us to create and that was only done through the efforts that we all, as brothers and sisters, put in; taking responsibility for what we were building. There were many things that I gained internally but by far the most important was the relationships I grew and deepened with my friends and God.”
A participant from Austria: “DONE stands for growth and growth comes from challenges and takes time. Growing means investing fully and then even a small group of people is enough to make a change. But DONE is only the beginning; we worked hard, learned a lot and now it is time to pass it on.”
A participant from Ireland: “When I look back on DONE I can definitely say that it was a key moment in my life. A time of self-growth and realisation, where life lasting friendships were made and unforgettable experiences. Through DONE and DM1 I feel closer to Heavenly Parent and closer to myself.”
A participant from the USA: “Through DONE and DONE Mission 1, I could grasp a better understanding of what it means to create and build a life of faith. Through overcoming myself and my selfishness, I could place my priority on developing myself into a better person for the sake of the people around me, those I love and care for. It goes beyond what is established here, but the education and experiences I hope to embody to bring back home and share naturally is one goal I set out for, acting as a follow up.”