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Debate and journalism training in Central Asia

The Youth in the 21st Century Program returns to Kyrgyzstan
From July to August this year, veteran journalists and debaters from around the world will be returning to Kyrgyzstan to deliver the latest in IDEA’s ongoing series of Youth in the 21st Century media and public speaking camps.

Following previous, highly successful debating and media training projects in Kyrgyzstan, Armenia, Manila and Chiang Mai, IDEA will once again be providing some of Central Asia’s brightest and most active students and citizen journalists with twelve days of intensive instruction and workshops on reporting and creating content for digital media, public speaking and argumentation.

The Youth in the 21st Century programme is designed to provide young people in developing democracies throughout the world with the skills necessary to negotiate rapidly changing political, economic and cultural environments. Program participants will be taught how to use the software, devices and social networks that are redefining the media landscape to produce engaging, accurate and independent journalism. Through a combination of debating and speaking exercises, research assignments and mini tournaments, a new generation of central Asian activists and writers will learn how to work behind and in front of the camera.

The latest Youth in the 21st Century camp will run from 19 to 31 July at Lake Issyk-kul in north-eastern Kyrgyzstan. The application deadline for the camp has been extended to 07 May 2012. The camp is open to young people aged between 18 and 29 from Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Successful applicants will receive free air travel to Kyrgyzstan, along with free food and accommodation. Further details can be found at http://archive.idebate.org/youthmedia/?page_id=388.

British Parliamentary debating in Central Asia
Before the Youth and Media camp opens, staff from IDEA UK and IDEA Central Asia will be hosting a special four-day long intensive training course for 20 Central Asian debaters in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan’s capital. Running from 12 to 15 July, the course is designed to introduce students and youth leaders with an interest in public speaking to the British Parliamentary debating format, and to provide participants with the skills needed to set up and run a debating society.

British Parliamentary debating is the format of choice for the World Universities Debating Championships, and is growing in popularity throughout Asia and America. The Bishkek training course will ground participants in the core rules of BP debate and introduce them to the wider world of international parliamentary debating. Debaters graduating from the course will be able to start providing basic debating training themselves, and will also be equipped with the knowledge necessary to begin building debate societies of their own, organising debating competitions and making contact with debaters, coaches and judges throughout the world.

A call for applications to the Bishkek Parliamentary Debate Training course will be advertised via idebate.org next week. Anyone considering making an application is advised to pay close attention to the website, as places on the course are limited and demand is expected to be high. Requests for further information should be sent to Alexander Cavell via acavell@idebate.org.uk

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