We will keep ourselves plenty busy throughout the journey with a complete programme of activities for on board the train and in the cities. In addition to the sleeping wagons, the train has a total of 6 activity wagons, providing the space for us to work and play. In the cities, we’ll use public spaces and other venues where we can stretch our legs and connect with members of the local community.
The programme brings together participants from civil society, the private and public sectors (local, regional, national or European public authorities) as well as selected representatives of the media who will broadcast our work.
We’ve drawn a broad outline for the programme, which we’ll fill in together with you. The programme, as we see it, is divided into four parts to be run simultaneously:
- The Action Design Programme: to develop viable projects and methods on specific issues, which will be implemented following the journey;
- The Community-Building Programme: to explore the cultures of the passengers and the people that we meet along the way and to build connections between them;
- The Social Programme: to have a good time and relax;
- The Documentation & Broadcasting Programme: to document and broadcast the Unity Express, its process and outputs.
Each part of the programme will be made up of several activities. The activities can take place on the train or in a city over one or more time-slots (morning, afternoon or evening).
Outcome: Viable projects and methods on specific issues which will be implemented following the journey. A stronger connection between the private sector and civil society.
How do we get there: Using various participatory group activities like discussion groups, workshops and art-of-hosting methods, we explore the selected issues, prototype actions and methods to tackle them, run tests and document the results so that they can be used worldwide. This process is accelerated by already existing tools that are brought together on the Unity Express and is done in collaboration between the private sector and civil society.
Who is responsible: This programme part is developed and facilitated by a triangle of us, the main sponsors and multiple tool groups. Tool groups are crews of 5 people centred around an already existing tool to tackle issues in our society. Their tool can be any kind of project (workshops, guidebooks, research, game, etc.) that provides a practical approach to the issues chosen for this part of the programme. The issues are defined by the main sponsors of the Unity Express together with us and are taken from the everyday life of Europeans.
Outcome: Better understanding of ourselves as Europeans, of the differences and similarities between us and their value. A stronger community through enhanced relations between participants. A shared vision for our European society.
How do we get there: Through a diverse set of dialogues, talks and presentations, intercultural art projects, games, music, theatre, cooking and other interactive group activities that allow participants from the train and the cities to explore, understand and reflect each other’s stories, world view, habits, traditions, values, needs, concerns, passions, hopes, beliefs and dreams.
Who is responsible: This part of the programme is participant-driven, in collaboration with us. All activities are proposed by you and chosen by the community via our online community platform. As long as your activity strengthens the relations between us, can be performed in the cities and on board and produces shareable output, your imagination and creativity are the limits. You can build groups up to 3 people to perform your activity.
Outcome: Good times!
How do we get there: This programme part is filled with tasty cuisine, alternative city tours, fun games, artistic performances, light workshops, concerts, parties and anything else you can imagine as part of a festival of cultures that celebrates all the good things in our community.
Who is responsible: The social programme on board is also participant-driven, in collaboration with us. All activities are proposed by you and chosen by the community via our online community platform. As long as your activity shares the spirit of a festival of cultures and can be performed on board, your imagination and creativity are the limits. You can build groups up to 3 people to perform your activity. The social programme off the train is organised by our city partners, local sponsors and local groups.
Documentation & Broadcasting
Outcome: Full transparency of the Unity Express and maximum dissemination of the outputs to the general public for reuse and further development. Visibility of the Unity Express beyond its journey.
How do we get there: Documentation and broadcasting of all Unity Express activities and their outcomes in formats that are most suitable. Examples are newsletters and blogs, short films, collections and digital copies of artworks, notes, minutes, drawings, plans, etc. produced during activities, a book or documentary about the journey, stories for radio channels or a multi-part television programme following a participant group through the four weeks.
Who is responsible: Again, this programme part is participant-driven, but only partly. You can propose projects that document the Unity Express in creative and innovative ways. Again, the community will make their choice via our online community platform. But in this part of the programme, we will be supported by media partners who will undertake their own professional projects.