Insightrainer Creatrainer – Creative Writing Workshop

Our representative took part in the workshop on CREATIVE WRITING, which is part of a series of 3 different ones: Creative Writing, Visuals and Comics, Games and Play. The activity took place from 30 October – 4 November in Istanbul, Turkey.

The overall objective is to increase the quality of the work done by trainers in the youth field. We intend to achieve it through the development of some competences, in particular, educational tool experimentation, adaptation, design, and creation; as well as insight enhancement of YOU
ALL, training our ability to reflect on our own practice, being more conscious and aware of our own youth work practice. The main THEME is: “Youth work with, for and about refugees”. Creative writing skills are the focus of this workshop, but also personal development will be
pursued while exploring the practice, potential, and the limitations of youth work with and about refugees. Also, there is the ‘IC Product Jam’, which will be organised in Summer 2018.

PRODUCT JAM, what is that?
It is an event organised in July 2018, where participants coming from the 3 workshops (creative writing, visuals and comics, games and play) gather and develop concrete tools to be used in youth work with and about refugees, and where skills from the three workshops will be merged.


  • To become acquainted with how writers prepare to write
  • To gain a theoretical overview of creative writing
  • To practice individual and collective writing
  • To explore the potential of creative writing in youth work
  • To reflect on the transfer of written material to a wider public
  • To increase abilities concerning fact checking
  • To get information and share practices on the work done with, for and about young refugees
  • To reflect on individual learning processes and support the Youthpass process.


Following the opening night of the training course, where we ‘traveled’ through different islands and by discussed the topics got to know participants, we continued the second morning getting to know each other. The methods used were Name and Gesture and Paint me a portrait, after which 4 topics in various groups were talked about (e.g. What is my passion and what inspires me, What I do at my work and how I got involved in youth work, Rolling a dice and answering question depending on the rolled number, What are my expectations from the training).The portraits were gathered in the Gallery and hang up on the wall.

The post-break morning session included the presentation of the programme and details with regard to the flow of the following working days.

The afternoon session started with Introduction to Creativity. We were given 3 minutes to think up as many as possible uses of a brick. Then in pairs. After that, Zones of creativity were presented and the work of Dr. Kobus Neethling.

The simulation in 4 groups was done: with a toilet paper in the limited time groups were supposed to create something ‘creative’.

The post-break session followed into the area of giving and receiving Feedback. A small performance was staged to show the aggressive, non-constructive feedback giving. The theoretical input on assertiveness and active listening followed. Then in small groups, we were supposed to give and receive feedback, getting back into ‘creations’ in the previous session in a way that it’s clear that it’s well-intentioned and that it should result in benefits and improvement of the ‘receiver’.

The second working day started with building on our ‘creative writing self’. The first pieces of writing appeared under each of our pens. In the follow-up, we further built on the skills introduced on the previous day – Giving and receiving constructive Feedback by doing it on the fellow-colleagues’ and own writing. The second part of the morning, we spent with two NGO representatives who presented the work of Turkish NGOs on the topic of social cohesion and inclusion of Syrian refugees. They shared the types of activities they organised to contribute to living together in the cohesion of the Turkish and more than 3 million Syrian refugees who found their refuge in Turkish cities, as well as the challenges that they face.

In the afternoon we were guests to the Red Crescent organisation. They provide help to the refugees in the local municipality: psychological and socio-economic help (language, computer and hairdresser’s course). The reflection was done in the creative writing form which will serve as input for the third-day session.

The third working day was dedicated acquiring creative writing skills from the Turkish writer Gülayşe Koçak. The novelist and creative writing university teacher, Gülayşe gave the participants insights into what creative writing is about, challenges that writers face and through practical exercises allowed us to make first steps in creative writing.

After this inspirational session, the group discussed possible ways to use creative writing in working with refugee youth. We came up with more than 42 proposals! The rest of the afternoon was dedicated to practicing Collective Creative Writing. Apart from writing skills, this exercise tested our sense of giving up control and taking responsibility.

The evening finished with the informal presentation of the participating organisations and the work we do in our communities. This was the additional opportunity to get to know participants better professionally.

On the final working day,  4 organisations, CEUD being one of them, took the floor to present methods that can be used to engage refugees. Hence, we had the opportunity to hear about Language Animation by our representative, Loesje by Palestinian Representative, Forum Theater by Lithuanian Representative, Blackout Poetry by Turkish Representative.

Youthpass session presented this self-reflection and tool for recognition of the knowledge and skills gained in nonformal learning processes.

The innovative element of this training course was the presence and participation of the researcher who has been involved in the all stages of the project preparation and implementation. We look forward to the presentation of the research results and hope this will pave the way for more ongoing researches in the youth projects.

We said farewell with hopes to meet again in the Product Jam.

The project has been supported by the Erasmus+ Programme: Youth in Action and Turkish NA.

Photos from Insightrainer Creatrainer – Creative Writing Workshop