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Background

The Nordic-Baltic Leadership Course is like nothing else in YFU. We don’t say that lightly. 

The idea of a stronger cooperation between the YFU organizations in the Nordic-Baltic region is not new. Throughout the years, many ideas and projects have been discussed and attempted to make the most of the natural proximity and strong volunteer bases in the region. Some of these took off, others not.

However, what took place last winter between the beginning of January and middle of February was more than just your ordinary meeting or training. In the heart of small-town Denmark and a month later by the picturesque Swedish Lake Mälaren twenty volunteers and four trainers gathered to go through a common journey of self-discovery. The resulting experiences, conversations, personal reflections, learnings, challenges, bonding, laughter, crying, wisdoms, and enduring friendships was more transformative than anyone could have expected. And maybe it was just a start?

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Alumni NBLC 2018

Why did this come to be in the first place, and why is it taking place once again?

In an increasingly complex and interconnected world, the nature of leadership is undergoing a radical transformation. Looking around however, both in YFU and elsewhere, we notice a distinct gap between what the world expects of its leaders and what they are actually being prepared for. The demands on the leaders are drastically changing,  with a larger expectation to be aware and value-driven, to promote diversity and sustainability wherever possible, and to always put people in the focus.

This leads to a simple conclusion: It is essential that we inspire, empower and support young people to become these modern leaders we need.

Through our educational projects and exchange programs, and as a natural byproduct of volunteering, YFU constantly empowers young people to practice leadership. However, one’s personal leadership cannot simply be reduced to a side effect of other commitments. On the contrary, it is a whole space of competence of its own that could and should be actively nourished. In our view there has previously been a distinct lack of possibilities for the individual to work with personal leadership beyond the ordinary and take it truly in-depth.

That is exactly what the NBLC was created to change.

Coming out from last year’s edition, it was obvious to everyone involved that it was too good not to be continued. During the spring of 2018, a team consisting of passionate former participants and former trainers banded together to discuss what doing it again would mean. From one of these fateful Skype calls a common conviction was formed: there was no way this wasn’t happening again! 

With the Nordic-Baltic Leadership Course, we want to lead with example and take action to face the challenges we see in YFU and the world today. We want to walk our own talk.


Our goal has never been to create just a regular training, and we hope you as a participant will get this sense too. From the outset we’ve been determined to create something more than that: an experience and a journey. An experience applicable to all aspects of your life, and a journey challenging you to take on other perspectives, reflect and continuously grow. This is the kind of course we would like to (and in fact have!) attend ourselves.

Doing this for the second time around, it’s crucial to note that we’re not resting on our laurels. Our fundamental goal is to bring this year’s participants a completely unique and awe-inspiring experience, which will be done by challenging ourselves to take this to the next level.

An experience that truly is like nothing else.