We Are All Storytellers

Hello,

We are Yvette and Xènia and we want to briefly share our experience at the “We Are All Storytellers” training course held in Petrohan, Bulgaria from June 10 to 18, 2022.

During this training course we met up with participants from Portugal, Poland, Turkey, Sweden, Italy, Tunisia, Lebanon, Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia. We had the opportunity to introduce them to the culture, history and food, among other things, of our country in a cultural night, just as they introduced theirs to us. Each cultural night included about two or three countries and each one decided if they wanted to make a slide presentation and explain about their country or region of origin, a ‘kahoot’ to test us and see how much we knew about their home country or both options. These nights ended with a feast of food and typical drink of the country which each of us had brought from our country or region.

During the day we did some activities about how to build stories on different topics, using our imagination and making up stories about practically anything using different methodologies that we were taught. They taught us that even the simplest detail or object can create a story worth of telling. Those responsible for this training course, Julia and Animar, were in charge of making these activities and they succeeded in making them as dynamic as possible. However, despite the fact that we did write stories and we had to write and think, we also did other activities that contributed to our knowledge and improved our storytelling and communication skills.

We stayed in a house called ‘Creative House’ in a small village about 65 kilometers from Sofia, Petrohan. Thanks to the fact that the house was located high in the mountains, about two hours by car from Sofia, we were able to put aside the pressure and stress of the big cities, considering that the only thing close to us was a small shop where they were selling little options of food. Nonetheless, this location was especially interesting for the most athletic ones who enjoyed one or several walks exploring and touring the surrounding forests.

Lastly, we would like to also mention that we had the opportunity to get to know Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, where we were able to spend a whole day. During this trip, some of us chose to take a “free tour” of the city, discovering its main attractions. This visit to Sofia allowed us to learn more about the great attributes of the city and the country, its culture, its food (such as the typical cold soup called Tarator), its language, its history and much more.

All in all, being part of this project has been a great opportunity both professionally and academically. Furthermore this course gave us the change to get to know a great country that is rarely talked about. On the one hand, we acquired a variety of knowledge about how to write and explain stories, since many of us know how to write but not how to tell them. On the other hand, we met a wide variety of people with whom we were able to share stories and we realized that, even if something does not seem worthy of telling or it looks too simple and boring, there is always someone who will find it incredibly interesting and will listen to you and give you all their attention.