Hello there curious readers!
I am here today to give you an overview of what happened on the event weekend of the Europe Central and Europe East Evolution Conference in Budapest. We had around 30 attendees from all over the new Judge Academy regions of Europe Central and Europe East, also including two visitors from outside the regions to give us some more perspective.
Officially, the following countries are part of those two regions: Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovak Republic, Albania, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Israel, Kuwait, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Qatar, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Slovenia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.
You may ask “what is this evolution thingy?!” Not a bad question and not an easy one to answer. Without going too much into detail: Due to the change from the “old Judge Program” to Judge Academy, the old familiar system went away and got only partially replaced by new structures. This conference was held to start filling the void.
Who will take care of organizing conferences? Who will take care of mentoring of new and old judges? The list goes on but to sum it up, many community aspects are not covered by the new Judge Academy system as of now. We tried to work on something new to help us there.
The Budapest conference laid the first layer for a basis to work on, foster an even greater community and enable us to deliver the great experience of being part of this community in the future.
We went into the weekend with the plan to rekindle some old project and new ones alike and chose a structure where we would try to find the needs and wishes of judges and then a way to enable those to be met in the future.
We did this in groups split by the former regions to create a community “wishlist” afterwards. The result you can see here!
Once we had this list we organized the items into 4 major color coded categories and four table groups were formed for the next phase. In this next phase, the regions got mixed together and rotated around to add their thoughts on topics and work out more concrete ideas. The following four groups crystallized themselves out of the wishlist.
- Regional/Judge SWAG (Stuff We All Get)
Setting up a system that makes it possible for judges to get judge swag and maybe even make this cheaper by organizing a way to sell non-judge branded but judge related goodies as an added revenue stream.
Having a group that ensures a good quality of conferences and also acts as a spot for judges to go to if they want to organize one and need tips and tricks.
- Mentoring Program
Focusing on the quality and organization of mentoring in the regions. For example, the German speaking L2 mentoring project or materials for judges to learn for the next level.
- Communication Channels within the regions
This includes things like a Discord, social activities, making community bonds stronger and such.
On Sunday we focused on sharing some inputs and discussion about leadership and how it could work. We put an emphasis on finding a way to keep all the ideas flowing and the result was the “Follow up crew” of people that are there to help these projects. The following flipchart also includes other ideas but primarily displays the process of getting there.
During a summary of the weekend we underlined the need for making the ideas into reality. To ensure this, we made a list of volunteer judges who wanted to help with specific topics from our list and also those that wanted to participate in the Follow-Up Crew.
If you are interested in taking part of these awesome projects, then please fill in this google form and add where you would like to help and what you would be highly interested in doing.
Next up we will try to post a more detailed overview of the topics from the groups so you can get an even better picture of what is planned!
With that thank you for reading and let’s hope for even more great days with our awesome community!