A great deal of web-based work was necessary to organise this conference. Potential participants had a constant stream of questions and answering them was seriously time consuming. One problem we encountered was that people sent their queries to multiple organisers, and some were answered by two people, some none at all. Particularly during the fund raising stage when there were lots of queries about applications, amounts, rejections, acceptances etc, this became problematic.

Registrations for the conference were at times downright chaotic. People who had registered correctly in most cases received all the correct information and had no problems. But those who weren’t properly registered, through their own mistake or that of the organisers, often did not receive the details and information about the conference. The problem was simply that one person was burdened with the enormous task of doing the registrations, and at the time this unfortunate person had a full time job. In retrospect this was far too much work for one person, particularly someone with limited time.

The second major change to the program which we feel is regrettable was the loss of time for participant led, issue-based workshops. Originally in the conference program there was an entire day designated for workshops. The purpose was to give participants a chance to present on their area of expertise or interest; to give us the chance to learn from each other. It also gave participants a chance to be leaders and develop their public speaking skills. However, it was reasoned to us that the major purpose of the GYG founding congress was simply to establish the organisation, and therefore the workshop were unnecessary and should be sidelined. While the logic was understandable, we couldn’t simply sit in a room for four days talking about forming an organisation. We had to stimulate ourselves with the reasons we are activists in the first place; and a global conference is an amazing opportunity to exchange with people from other cultures and continents who care deeply about the same thing you do. It is a truly motivating experience to find this in common with others.

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