As the month of May is nearing its end it`s nice to look back and reflect on what a joyous time it has been with celebrations and festivities in both South Africa and Norway.
On 17 May, Norway celebrated its Constitution Day, which was marked by nationwide activities. Since this is a special year for us all, with the ongoing pandemic and the 20th anniversary of the partnership between FBF and NMF, an extraordinary performance was put together.
The PULSE team and FBF arranged a fantastic greeting and Constitution Day wishes for their friends in Norway. The show was live streamed in Norway on NMF’s Facebook page, if you missed it, you can see the stream on the PULSE YouTube channel right now.
May is a wonderful month filled with friendship and joy, yet, it is important to remember that not everyone has the possibility to join in on these celebrations. For some, these days can be a struggle, and for that reason we should all reflect on why we are blessed. While also thinking on how to include and help those that might not be as fortunate. Friendship is just as much about inclusion as it is being together. Do not forget that some might sit in silence, waiting for an opportunity to be included, we should all hold this in mind as the celebrations continue into the month of June. Friendship is about inclusion and PULSE encourages everyone to be inclusive.
The PULSE team is happy to announce that the blog will from now also include a story from one of our distinguished Alumni once a month. This part of the blog will be a video or a personal picture with a special story.
This is a recognition and celebration of our friends whom have participated in the PULSE program or the Bands Crossing Borders (BCB) exchange in previous years. We are happy to share their stories with our readers and hope that they can be an inspiration while also providing some insights into what the exchange has meant to the participants.
Our first story is from Marit Bakken, a BCB participant all the way back in 2006. In her video, she talks about what BCB and the exchange did for her, and how she used her experience to further her career.
Thank you, Marit, for the story of your success!
Virtual Education Band Visit.
May is a month of celebrating friendship for PULSE and it has also been a month filled with educational activities for FBF field staff. PULSE and FBF Education (FBE) are currently hosting Virtual Education Band Visits with various field bands. Educational Band Visits (VEBV) is a process where FBE and PULSE renders educational activities virtually to field staff members. These sessions are held online for four hours with three different bands at a time. The purpose of the VEBV is to enhance the knowledge and teaching skills of the field staff on music theory, lifeskills and how to manage the projects.
First three bands that received the pleasure of being visited virtually was Plett Pioneers Field Band (Plettenburg bay), Springs Field Band (Johannesburg) and Alexandra Field Band (Johannesburg). Over a period of three days, field staff will attended one session a day with the PULSE participants and education facilitators. On the fourth day, an evaluation will be held, in order to provide feedback and thoughts on how the VEBV went and could be improved. In the evaluation meeting, all field staff members from the different field bands gather together in a virtual meeting.
Topics that were held in the different sessions were music theory, team dynamics and self-care. The music theory sessions were facilitated by Khayalethu Benela and Peter Maluleke. The team dynamics session was facilitated by Jacob Mhlapeng and Nomkhosi Mnisi. Lastly, Solvor Vermeer and Franqo Ntshole held the self-care sessions.
The VEBV was greatly received by the field staff and they requested more of these sessions to be held frequently. More VEBVs are scheduled for the other bands with the same topics to be covered in the next coming weeks.
Author: Nicholas Bahrawy and Jacob Mhlapeng
Pictures: Ushama Jerrier and Nicky du Plessis