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Update: | Excellent feedback from another EdNet conference in Mostar. The educators were absorbed in the activities for the whole 2 days. The meaningful playground service activity certainly was a highlight .... even though it was raining. Photos will be posted below | Reminder: Rustic Pathways can now run Duke of Edinburgh's International Awards. We offer schools currently running DoE Awards and those wanting to introduce the awards, programmes to satisfy the Bronze, Silver and Gold levels of award | Talk with your RP contact about contacting schools who have travelled on particular trips that you might be interested in. They can refer you on to these educators so that you can make informed decisions

RP EdNet Conference Mostar 2019

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RP EdNet Conference 2019, Mostar | Europe | Middle East | India |

Comments from the conference feedback -

This was by and large the best in-servicing I've been to for Service Learning. I enjoyed all of the workshops and the opportunity to go through some of the experiences that the students have when they visit Mostar. This far exceeded my expectations. American School of Doha
Due to my conversations with Cameron, my expectations for the "workshop" was clear. I was ready to network, share, learn, and connect with RP reps for feedback regarding my students previous experiences and how, together, we can create travel experiences that meet both needs. Since I inherited our WWW program, I was completely saddened that the "trips" were focused on shopping, 5 star hotels and food. (It's like a badly planned International Day). When I met Cameron, he convinced me RP has service learning experiences, and I was sold. My visit to the RP "workshop" was to learn more about these experiences, what do other schools feel they've gained from them, and how do they navigate through all the other school-related processes.   American International School of Jeddah
The whole of the conference was a true immersive experience in which a real bond developed between all participants to provide a forum for open dialogue and thinking. The three days were paced effectively and provided engagement at a level which was very beneficial in terms of personal growth and which also provided a wealth of takeaways that will be used in my day-to-day practice.  Inter-Community School Zurich
It was extremely well organised and all the participants made excellent contributions. British International School of Istanbul
It definitely exceeded my expectations. I went to get valuable tips from experiences colleagues but I hadn't expected the context and the outcome to be so versatile and diverse. This conference will help me in future challenges when it comes to trips and Service Learning in general. International School of London Qatar
I was pleased to walk away with such valuable information and good contacts. Frankfurt International School
The conference went way beyond the expectations I had for this event. Mercedes-Benz International School

Check out the discussions happening at the EdNet conference. Participants are actively engaged in service learning sessions and building great ideas for school programmes.

EdNet Conference, Mostar 3 - 5 May Theme: Learning through Service

We are in the final weeks before the first EdNet conference in Europe!! Educators are attending from India, Dubai, Qatar, Kuwait, Germany, Switzerland and Saudi Arabia. 

Presenting will be Lauren Fine (Hong Kong IS), Lydia Eckstein (Inter-Community School Zurich), Andrea Bouch (RP) and Dave Dennis (RP). The theme of the conference is Learning through Service and the focus will be on how to develop an excellent service programme that focuses on student learning. Your colleagues will be sharing good service practices with you and you will leave the conference armed with planning processes that are working in schools. To support this Lauren will be presenting a session (by video conference from Hong Kong) that focuses on what a successful experiential learning programme can look like in a school, HKIS. Andrea will share her experience and thoughts about sustainable service with a focus on the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Dave will lead a discussion on trips risk management.

Conference Outcomes:
  • Create a network of experiential educators who will share knowledge with each other and with Rustic Pathways
  • Provide professional development for experiential educators to develop in depth understanding of what ‘experiential learning is’ i.e. the width and depth of experiential education
  • Provide the basis for future planning for trips and greater support that Rustic Pathways can provide client schools
  • Offer an experience for the educators in Bosnia-Herzegovina to familiarise them with what can be offered
  • Participating Educators come with completed pre-conference tasks as needed

Rustic Pathways Educators Network Conference Schedule

THEME: Service for Learning
Thursday 2 May
Early arrivals Airport Pickups
Snacks in Hotel (Matija)
Rustic Staff waiting in Arrival Hall
Friday 3 May
Airport Pickups (Matija)
Rustic Staff waiting in Arrival Hall
7.30 - 8.30
Vila Milas
10:00 - 10:30
Villa Milas
10:30 - 12:00
Orientation bring Mia and Gaga to do dance at Vila Milas
Villa Milas
12:30 - 1:30
Villa Milas
13:30 - 15:00
Sustainable Service
Villa Milas
15:00 - 16:00
Coffee with Jaso
Cofe at Jaso
16:00 - 17:30
Service Session #1 (Lydia)
Villa Milas
17:30 - 23:00
Market time and Dinner

Saturday 4 May
7.00 - 7.45
Villa Milas
8:00 - 9:30
Risk management (Dave)
Villa Milas
9:30 - 11:00
Experiential Learning & Schools (Lauren F)
Villa Milas
11:00 - 12:30
Service planning #2 (Lydia)
Villa Milas
Villa Milas
13:30 - 17:00
Service Activity (Matija and Les)
17:00 - 18:00
Service Reflection (Les)
Villa Milas
18:30 - 23:00
Bosnian Dinner in town and Market Time
Old Town

Sunday 5 May
7:00 - 7.45
Villa Milas
8:00 - 9:00
Experiential Learning (Les)
Villa Milas
9:00 - 10:00
Group Wrap-Up Car-park topics, Moving Forward (Les)
Villa Milas
10:00 - 15:00
Depart for Sarajevo Airport (8 pax) (Matija)

Monday 6 May
Remaining participants depart for Sarajevo Airport (6 pax) (Matija)

Excellent endorsement from a previous EdNet Conference

Rustic Pathways have made an authentic effort and investment to continuously improve the quality of their service learning trips. I was fortunate enough to join Educators Network Conference 2018, at the beautiful Udon Thani Base House in Thailand. During this workshop a large group of educators were able to meet and discuss our expectations and understanding of experiential learning. Moreover, we had the opportunity to experiences local service learning projects initiatives. Les Millard and his team at Rustic Pathways organized a meaningful and worthwhile conference where the outcomes from this conference are certainly going to support the continuous improvement of their service learning trips. (Dan Powell, CAS Coordinator, I-Shou International School, Taiwan)

We are pleased to announce that we will be launching our 1st RP EdNet Conference for schools in Europe, Middle East and India to be held in Mostar May 3 - 5, 2019.

After offering 2 highly successful conferences in Asia; one in Udonthani, northern Thailand, and the other in Luang Prabang, Laos we have had many requests to run an annual conference in Europe to cater for Europe, Middle East and India schools.

The conference will take the form of presentations, discussion groups, hands on service activity and of course, very importantly, social interaction! The conference is designed to bring together EdNet educators to discuss experiential learning issues relating to your schools, have expert educators lead presentations. The goal is by sharing knowledge we can as a network provide the best possible learning experiences. 
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The schedule will include -
  • Principles of Experiential Learning
  • Service - from concept to actions. Planning a service programme
  • Managing student travel risk
  • Sustainable service - what is this and who benefits?
  • Hands on service

Presenters include Dave Dennis a highly experience consultant in risk management, Andrea Bouch who has a huge background in sustainable development and Lydia Eckstein who is a passionate service and experiential learning advocate. Read Dave, Andrea and Lydia's bios below -

Dave Dennis is a risk management and emergency response expert with more than 20 years of experience in the adventure and student travel industries. He is the Director of Safety and Risk Management at Rustic Pathways and founder of Resilient Solutions, LLC, a consulting firm specialized in customizing risk and safety programs for global tour operators and educators. Dave has a Master's Degree in Business Continuity and has presented at industry conferences and webinars including the Wilderness Risk Management Conference, American Gap Association, and U.S. Tour Operators Association. Dave remains passionate about preserving the benefits of experiential travel while ensuring traveler wellbeing. Dave lives in Colorado with his wife and two children.

Andrea Bouch has spent her career exploring social impact and sustainable development while working in microfinance, impact investing, philanthropy, education, and tech. Andrea traveled with Rustic Pathways as a high school student in 1997 and has since visited 50+ countries. She holds an MBA in nonprofit management and international development from the University of Geneva, Switzerland, where she was also an adjunct professor in social entrepreneurship, and a BA from UC San Diego. A California native, she has lived in Chile, Guatemala, and Switzerland and considers travel a central component of her happiness.

Lydia Eckstein is a multi-lingual TCK who has spent the last 20 years working as a teacher and coordinator in international schools in London, Istanbul, Chiang Mai and Switzerland. In addition to her work as coordinator of MYP Service Learning, Round Square and the student Personal Development programme in Grades 9 to 12, Lydia is involved in Character Education research. Experiential learning, Character Education and student leadership form the heart of her day-to-day life working with students, teachers and administrators.

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What does a Rustic Pathways sponsored conference mean?

Rustic Pathways will cover the costs of the following -
  • Flights - up to reasonable cost of which the amount will be specified
  • Accommodation, meals and transport
  • Visas where applicable

You can apply to attend by completing the online application .... click here

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