where integrity becomes easy

Would I ever imagine facilitating a workshop of amazing youths from Indonesia and Vietnam? Furthermore, would I even ever imagine a lomba-makan-kerupuk (literally translated as cracker-eating-contest, so typical competition of Indonesian independence day celebration) to be involved in the workshop? And again, would I imagine that the main topic of the workshop would be integrity? Couple months ago, I would say none of the above.

My first encounter with @clubSPEAK (SPEAK stands for Suara Pemuda Anti Korupsi, Youth Voices for Anti-Corruption Movement) was through @rdungga during the Vibrant #19, where her passion while sharing the stories has seduced me to facilitate one of their weekend gatherings on Reaffirming Identity of @clubSPEAK. Then, I so amazed on how these youths can nicely put this anti-corruption movement into their lifestyle without reducing their awesomeness as a student, philosopher, writer, journalist, blogger, filmmaker, creative-planner, and so on. Not so much of big words, just simply born the desire to build Indonesia free of corruption from within, and spread the words to other youths. This is reflected in the SPEAK Oath, where they would recite this every time they assemble.

Then few days ago, I got another chance to facilitate 20 youths from @clubSPEAK network, youth ambassadors from Vietnam, and mentors from Towards Transparency Vietnam for a workshop named Promoting Integrity – My Dream My Way My Action. Prior to the workshop, the most challenging part had to be completed: brainstorming on the flow of the facilitation process. For me, who mostly deal with tangible issues such as conservation, livelihoods, and renewable energy, talking about an abstract concept such as integrity is indeed an additional challenge. The word might not be new, but the range of interpretation of such word is certainly wide, especially considering the various backgrounds of these youths. Everything should be made easy for the participants. Thus we decided to have the entire first day dedicated for the Discover session and benchmarking on the idea of integrity. The main reason is the realization that whatever type of social movement that they are gonna deal with, they must discover their own strengths and assets first. Still, we will apply the combination of Appreciative Inquiry and Asset Based Thinking method for the entire workshop. Then, the second day will explore more on the rest of the Appreciative Inquiry steps of Dream, Design, and Deliver, with a touch of @clubSPEAK style of course.

To benchmark the definition of integrity, we decided to use human rights issue as its approach since both have strong correlation with the anti-corruption movement. First day went smooth with the help of inspiring 30 short video clips on human rights. I bet some had teary eyes watching the video. The video was used as a tool for the participants to feel the idea of integrity and its relation with their experiences. The first question was ‘how do you feel after watching the video?’ This is certainly the ‘it’ question of vibrant facilitation. Then the discussion went through until they were requested to mention one word that came up in mind after hearing the word integrity. It eventually concluded that the principles of integrity are: equality, truth/honesty, starts from within, and fight for the rights, including others. I would say that this benchmarking was the highlight of the day where its marked in the first day evaluation, where some of the participants stated their amazement on how they can easily understand the word integrity without having it defined per se. Well, it was the second highlight actually. The first highlight was when they were singing the Fireworks song of Katie Perry out loud both on the opening and closing session.

Second day was beyond belief. The entire steps of Dream, Design, Deliver had amazed me and Retha on how these youths can easily bound and create their vision board together, creatively. But yet, they are highly passionate for this integrity campaign thus creating a joint vision will not be such a difficult task. Then to close the deal, in the last session, Deliver, they were mapping their individual Integrity Campaign for Social Change – plus their contribution of skills and passions – into the group’s mindmap. To present these group maps, here come another vibrant moment, we asked them to have cultural performance. Just by a half hour preparation, all of the four groups came up with brilliant ideas: live show using teleconference from Indonesia – Vietnam, the folk contests, using traditional attires and hats, traditional dancing, singing, dancing, more singing, and dancing again. And oh, these new friends from Vietnam have marvellous voice that caught us deep although we did not understand the lyrics. We started the workshop at 9 AM and it was 8 PM. Everybody was exhausted but we just could not stop laughing and having fun. Amazing.

After the day was wrapped, Retha and I had a chance to have an end chat with Chi, one of the mentors from TT Vietnam, where we discussed more about the vibrant method and how it would be highly suitable for facilitating social movement in Vietnam. Meanwhile, by quick observation in the twitter – thanks to the technology – I saw the youths were having a blast goodbye until wee hour. Thus, I would say that the best part of this entire session is how the positive energy, whatever it is, can bind longer than the workshop itself. Surely an ammo for social movement.

Note: the pictures were taken from @clubSPEAK photo album where they can be reached via facebook or follow them on twitter.