Notes from Almaty, Kazakhstan – Insights into Regional Development Conference Part 3

Notes from Almaty, Kazakhstan – Insights into Regional Development Conference Part 3

Day 2 starts with masterclasses being offered on a variety of topics. Participants were to choose one of these sessions all taking place simultaneously. Experts conducting classes on such topics as Developing Network Organisations and Financial Sustainability of CSO’s, fundraising and social networking. The second half of the day saw more workshops like organising of information campaigns and telling a story through video, which was quite interesting.

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This way the participants were able to attend four master classes and training sessions. At times the sessions were a bit too academic for some of the very experienced participants but all had something new to take back home .

We were able to see a little bit of the city as sessions ended earlier than the day before. For those who are not familiar with it, Almaty is a deceptively beautiful city. From the eyes of an urban planner from Pakistan it’s a little bit of a dream city with many features we would want for our own cities. One cannot ignore the wide parisian style tree lined avenues, good public transport and cleanliness.

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The soviet history of the city is evident in the architecture which might be perceived as imposing block like structures with simplistic style but more than serve their purpose. The locals may appear a bit reserved at first but are actually very helpful and polite and eager to know more about your home country, however all foreign participants were effected by the severe language barrier, which made us rely heavily on our guides, translators and facilitators. The language barrier was a also recognised as an issue which was holding the Central Asian back especially in the international networking area which was the central focus of this conference.

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