The team at EA Slovakia received funding from EA Czechia to organize a retreat for community builders from Eastern Europe.
The retreat will start in 10 days and we have some last-minute spots after some people opted out. Apply here.
The main retreat will start on Friday 25. November 16:00 at Divoka Voda, Bratislava; and end on Sunday, 27. November, 14:00. We will have pre-retreat activities starting on Thursday, 24. November 18:00, until the official start of the retreat. Participation is free, we offer travel support if needed.
We think this retreat is a wonderful opportunity for people who want to start new communities, as well as for those who can offer advice, or think about the Eastern European region as a whole.
Currently, we have about 30 people from most countries. One notable exception is EA Estonia which decided to not apply.
The retreat is being prepared by a core team of 4 people, with the occasional support of 3 additional senior people. Even though we started preparations almost 3 months ago, the last 10 days will be much more hectic, as expected. But we are mostly in good shape and focusing on finalizing the program.
We want to focus on:
- Current State of EA in Eastern Europe. Presentation of existing community-building efforts. Mainly EA Czechia, EA Poland, and EA Hungary, but all the other countries as well (Slovakia, Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, Russia, Ukraine, Turkey, Greece, Georgia, Latvia, and Bosnia)
- Deep dive into building strategies for individual communities and the region. We want to focus on actually building the strategies and preparing drafts. As well as a discussion of strategic topics, such as comparative advantage and the theory of change.
- Developing national organization - workshop about practical issues related to community-building. Includes topics like funding, co-founders, core team, community-building funnel, organizational structure, NGO boards, working with volunteers, employing people, running community events, etc. We expect communities to be in a variety of states with diverse needs, asking different questions. The aim of this time is to come up with practical action items for leaders of each community that once executed will move the community forward.
- Exploration of different perspectives and building of our identity. Here we want to focus on EA Narrative and the values we want to spread in Eastern Europe. Most of us already learned that what works in Oxford or Bay Area, doesn't necessarily work in our part of the world. We want to think from first principles about what messages we want to share.
- Preparation of projects. Lastly, the ideal output of this retreat is the creation or improvement of several functional EA communities that are attracting the right crowd of talented and ambitious people and redirecting them to more impactful career directions. At the same time, our experience tells us that national groups are great spaces for project incubation. For example, Effective Thesis is one such project incubated by EA Czechia. During this workshop, we want to start with brainstorming projects and end up with a project plan draft for each individual or community.
We are aware this program is ambitious for a short retreat. If you have some useful feedback or have experience running similar retreats, we would love to chat. You can comment here, DM me, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org