Friday, 16 August 2013

Despite the aching knees and the greying hair, I love my mentoring role as an older conductor



Hong Kong - with my poster
In my element at a workshop
Meeting my friends - from Australia
- from Sweden
- from Germany
Learning something new
Relaxing with a beer - that should be tea!

Students at the World Congress in Munich

As Jalyss Zapf says here on her blog –


she met me in the entrance hall of the National Institute for Conductive Education in Birmingham where I spend five or ten minutes encouraging her to consider submitting an abstract for the World Congress for Conductive Education in Munich in October, either alone or with fellow students. she was immediately full of enthusiasm and I was not surprised to hear from them later when they needed help to register for the Congress.

Jalyss and her friend Hannah Silcock considered it and went for it. They were successful their Abstract was accepted and I am now looking forward very much to meeting them, and listening to them, in Munich in just a couple of months. You can read their abstract here –


Remembering the first World Congress

I was a student in Budapest at the time of the 1st WCCE, training to be a conductor, and I had a pass for the whole of the Congress. It was amazing for me to have the freedom to come and go to presentations as I pleased, so each day, as soon as my shift in the group was over, I rushed into the city to listen to whoever happened to be talking at the time. I knew even then that it was going to be a long time before I could afford to attend one of these conferences again.

I was right. The next time that I actually attended a World Congress for Conductive Education was about twenty years later when, in 2010, I travelled to Hong Kong. It was expensive and I was there thanks to my Dad who sponsored the trip.

Helping hands

To have students speaking at the World Congress is something special and I am hoping that it will be an experience that will encourage Jalyss and Hannah to communicate with a wide conductive world as they embark on their careers after their final year of training.

I was lucky as a trainee conductor to be living in the city where the 1st World Congress was taking place otherwise I would not have been attending it. I am lucky again as the 8th World Congress will take place just an hour or two southwards on the ICE train.

To make the experience financially possible for these students from NICE I have been encouraging and helping them to seek sponsorship for their travel and accommodation expenses which are quite high in Munich at the best of times, but even higher at the time of the Oktoberfest with which the Congress coincides. Some people involved in Conductive Education, and others who are not, have already been very generous and we are very thankful to them.

If there are any readers who are willing to lend a hand by sponsoring anything from a daily travel card at about 6 Euros to a night at a Munich hostel for about 30 Euros, please get in touch with Jalyss and Hannah, or with me, I know that they will put every penny to good use.

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