It was with great excitement that young people from different parts of India came together for this first of its kind “Journalism Workshop for Youth”, with the wish to do something for the Almighty God. It was conducted by Bro. Robert and Sis. Rachel in Pune, on 5th and 6th March 2016 at the Kalewadi church.
The purpose was to equip members to report on events taking place in their home congregations. These articles could then be used to update the NAC website regularly. The main focus of this workshop was to guide the participants and improve their creative writing and photographic skills, which in turn would be helpful in doing God’s work.
“And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown.” (1 Corinthians 9:25)
Play Way Method of Teaching
Journalism consists of three major aspects: Good photography, good writing skills, and finally putting together a well formulated article. The workshop started on a light to and fun note with the intention to encourage everyone to open up and participate, so that they would be receptive and ready to actively participate in the workshop. The workshop was run on three principal guidelines: ‘Learn It, Do It and Review It’
Learn & Do it: Writing Skills
We were taught how to write in a creative way. As a start a small exercise was given to think and write a funny story based on wild imagination. Another activity included one in which everyone was given chits with one emotion written on it and then the participants had to write a story about that particular emotion. For this activity we were divided into two groups. We learnt how to write an article on that emotion (fear, surprise, anger, etc.) based on our own experience. For the next activity we were given a sample news article and we had to analyze, think and write the positive and negative points, and how it could be improved. This activity was called ‘Critical Thinking’.
We got to know about different types of cameras and learnt how to use them. As a ‘user friendly’ start, we were asked to click a selfie picture which everybody enjoyed. Later while using the camera in a more advanced and mature way, we were asked to click pictures which were related to our topic (that is, to the emotion). This was the most exciting part since we had to translate our article written in words into picture form. This we did by talking to people, and asking them to depict the emotion we wanted to portray. This exercise was important to get an understanding of what type of pictures would be the right ones.
The next level of learning was very challenging as it required putting into practice all that we had learned and understood. For our assignment we had to prove both our writing and photography skills: The next day on 6th March 2016, all of us were divided into four groups and in each group every individual had a major task to perform. They had to be the writer, the editor or the photographer and they had to write an article on the “Divine Service for the Departed“.
Everyone participated enthusiastically in this assignment and there was a lot of interaction and creative thinking. All the participants worked as a team and wanted their team to win. Ultimately there were two winning teams and everyone was overjoyed.
Review & Analyze
When the participants reviewed their own work from day one, they got to know how far they had reached in creative writing skills. They had also learned to organize their workflow and to keep a systematic standard for naming of files and folders on the computer. They were taught to develop analytical skills so that they could contribute to the NAC website. This would not only encourage participation but also enable the members and others to get information and to become interested to know more about our church activities.
A pleasant surprise awaited us because after the Divine Service, there was an exhibition of the entire work of the previous day. The articles we had written and the accompanying photos were displayed, so that all the members who came for the Divine Service could have an idea of what we had done. The members of the Kalewadi congregation got a chance to see this and how well everyone had developed their skills. They reviewed and analyzed the work of each one and appreciated them.
Sad yet Joyful Goodbye
All the members of this WKRSHP contributed their best to fulfil God’s will through them. It was both a happy as well as sad moment when after an exciting two days, it was the time to say good bye. The best part of the workshop was that everyone had got a chance to interact with each other and participate in all the activities. All good things have to come to an end, and so also the workshop, which ended on a high note. Everyone was very happy and there was a beginning of many new friendships. The participants were stirred up with a strong zeal for doing God’s work, and a determination to do so.
“For God gives wisdom and knowledge and joy to a man who is good in His sight; …“ (Ecclesiastes 2:26)