A week after the first training, the Refugee Advocacy and Inclusion Board in Bulgaria passed the second module of its training on March 25 and 26. Based on the feedback from the trainees and the set goals for the work and activities of the Board, the Bulgarian School of Politics developed the two-day training program. The topic of effective communication in social networks found a place in it. Prof. Desislava Boshnakova, head of the Media and Communication Department at New Bulgarian University, presented to the audience data from January 2023, according to which 59.4% of the world’s population are social media users, with each user spending an average of over two hours daily on one or more social platforms. Prof. Boshnakova presented the features of some of the most frequently used social networks and gave recommendations for their most appropriate use, according to specific goals. After the lecture, the representatives of the Refugee Board created in groups a post for different social media and received feedback on their work from the communications specialist.
A large part of the time of the second training module was devoted to the full presentation of the idea for the creation of the Board. Rukia Aziz, Protection Adviser (Community Work) at UNHCR spoke about its planned work in close connection with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The topic was continued with a discussion of the Board’s work rules, the distribution of functions, its activities, internal communication, its future logo and name. The second training day of the second training module began with a lecture by the political science Hristo Panchugov. He introduced the refugees, members of the Board, to the process of creating public policy, gave basic knowledge about political parties and political processes in Bulgaria. Anna Savova, representative of the Kremikovtsi District, Municipality of Sofia spoke about local government in Bulgaria and specifically about the municipalities’ work with refugees and migrants. The psychologist Kalina Yordanova was the last lecturer for this module. She emphasized leadership and change management capabilities. After her presentation and the subsequent discussion, the members of the Board again discussed the possibilities for the future effective work of the new formation. This will continue in the third module, which is planned for May.
The creation and the training of the Refugee Advocacy and Inclusion Board is part of the “Partnership for Sustainable Refugee Inclusion” project, which is implemented by the Center for Sustainable Communities Development and the Bulgarian School of Politics “Dimitry Panitza” with the financial support provided by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway under the Active Citizens Fund Bulgaria within the EEA Financial Mechanism.