Interviewing Mr Yuval, CAS director and teacher at EMIS; organizer of the Sustainability weekend in coordinatino with ZZZ™
Int: How did you find out about the organisation ZZZ in the first place?
Mr. Yuval: Half a year ago I wrote a grant to the Goethe-Institut in Israel and I had to come up with an idea connected to the schools mission and I thought it would be very interesting to do something about sustainability. Then I found out about the organisation Futur Zwei through the Goethe-Institut. And when I wanted a grant for the school, they gave me a shortlist with organizations that might be interesting for our purposes and they were one of the top three priorities. This is how we became familiar with them.
Int: What convinced you that this organisation ZZZ would be good for the school?
Mr. Yuval: Firstly I have never heard about it and it seemed like a very cool idea, not a cliché, not corny, something that everyone is doing, and something that everyone is aware of. It was a completely new concept for me and I thought it was a very cool way of handling existing resources with new ideas and they were quite communicative so it was easy for me to work with them.
Int: What were your expectations for this weekend concerning the organization?
Mr. Yuval: I did tell Paul and Daniel that the implementation for these things in Israel is completely unfamiliar for me. I am not sure that we even have the same conditions and I am not sure whether it is applicable in Israel. But at the same time that we have students from all over the world and probably many of those students can see these things happening in their home states so I thought that even though it is not a local matter it can be generated to a global matter. I had an expectation for students to be learning a lot about this idea. It ended quite differently but I think with good benefits.
Int: Do you want the students to implement the idea of temporary uses locally, e.g. on campus here where we have vacant spaces as well?
Mr. Yuval: My perspective of this matter is that I bring fresh ideas and perspectives in campus and if students want to take part and do an initiative concerning one of those ideas I would be more than happy to assist them, but I think its and inspirational kind of activity and I always refer it to, this is corny and cliché, Oded´s (referring to Oded Rose, the founder and CEO of EMIS) work. He had the same idea for many, many years that he got when he was your age and it took him thirty years and then he did it. So when I think about these workshops and lectures what drives me forward is the notion that you think of something like that and keep it in mind and somewhere in the future it is going to be in your benefit to remember and implement it if you have a chance.
Int: What problems did you face during the organisation of the weekend? What was difficult to do?
Mr. Yuval: The difficult thing to do was to adapt your times and schedules to this workshop. I needed to bring these people for more than one day to make it more substantial and to make not only space for the theory of the thing but also practical things, e.g. the fashion factory is the best example of why we need at least two days in order to produce something and with ZZZ it is the same. We are actually working now in the club (the school`s until now little used common room) and thinking of things and it needs more time. And setting these things during your year is quite complicated. So I did anticipate many students to be frustrated about this and it was clear to me that it is going to happen. So this is the most complicated thing to make room for it inside campus.
Int: What did you like best about the workshop ZZZ, what do you think was successful?
Mr. Yuval: I think generally speaking when we bring guests into campus and students speak and start working with them it is always successful, even if it does not look like it because they bring new vibes, new perspectives and new ways of looking at things and these guys are very creative actually. So in a sense the way we meet with them and talk to them is one thing and the other aspect is that we are actually going to produce plans for the club in the end of the workshop. And I really believe that this time it is going to happen because we have the budget for it. If you gain something from it with knowledge, with new acquaintances and with a new refurbished club, then we have been highly successful.
Int: What are you taking from this workshop? What did you learn from it?
Mr. Yuval: First of all I learned a lot from what Daniel and Paul are doing. It is really interesting and I think it is something that is going to be done more and more around the world. As an educator I think that getting students more involved prior to this would best serve your purposes and will maybe help to get the best outcomes of this workshop.
Int: Concerning the funding, was it only a school-led event or did the organisation contribute to it?
Mr. Yuval: It is school-led. And when I say school-led I really hope that from now on we are going to work with this organization on a routine basis. It has been funded by the Goethe-Institut, so it is an outside resource which is very valuable to the students and the school.
Int: If you could do the workshop again, what would you do differently? What would you change?
Mr. Yuval: Probably I would bring more workshops, three or four and work in smaller groups. I had of course a funding limit, so I could only bring two workshops but I would do it like three or four and I would do it for three or four days. So you would get a better and in depth knowledge and experience from it.
Written by Naomi Theinert
Edited by Tom Sagiv