Mentoring is an important aspect of BRisc, and a lot of effort goes into making the mentoring scheme a successful model.
Before the start of the course, new mentors got together to get briefed about the different aspects of the course, their roles as mentor, and also learn from the experience of previous mentors.
A lot of the preparation is done behind the scenes, on laptops and long (sometimes late-night) meetings.. But we managed to get a few shots of some of the brothers in action!
This is where it all started (officially!). The opening ceremony was held in the first night. All participants got together in the big hall, mentors and teachers were also present, guest scholars also blessed us with their presence. It was all about introducing the course, discussing some important points, but also an opportunity to get to know each other and start the whole bonding which would continue throughout the course (and hopefully carry on after it as well!).
After the opening ceremony and a tasty dinner, the participants and some mentors went to the rooms for some fun ice-breakers, just to catalyse the bonding process…. Classes will be starting next day early morning!
Classes and Workshops
Well, the course is primarily to gain knowledge, so classes were an essential part of the course (nearly 50 hours!). Through the classes, we aimed to open the door to profound Islamic knowledge in important fields in order to help participants acquire a correct Islamic worldview and have a balanced approach to daily life based on Islamic teachings.
There were a variety of teachers, all students from the Hawzah, with lots of knowledge as well as experience with working with the youth.
Classes were on various topics, all of them interconnected, forming a structure that would help a participant build a solid picture of Islam as a whole.
Discussions and Youth Project
Although there were many classes, it wasn’t always a one-way delivery of information. Various methods were used to ensure that the learning was kept interactive. Some of the classes were held in a workshop format that would include group discussions as well as team-building activities.
One of the important parts of the course was the youth project, which allowed the participants to think outside the box and implement the course material they learned on a practical project. The participants, who were divided in 5 groups, carried out a 2-part project in which they had to discuss, plan, write a short piece, and finally present their project at the end of the course.
Visits to Scholars
This year, once again, we got amazing opportunities to meet great scholars and famous personalities:
Ayatullah Jawadi Amuli, one of the maraji, mufassirin and philosophers of our time.
Ayatullah Tahriri, an expert in higher Islamic sciences as well as a senior and reliable spiritual teacher.
Agha Saberi, a teacher in the Hawzah.
Agha Panahian, a famous speaker and scholar.
Agha Amini, a teacher and counsellor in the Hawzah.
One of the highlights of the trip is of course the spiritual boosts we get from the ziarat of the Imam Ridha and Hazrat Fatimah Ma’sumah.
Apart from the ziarah of the 2 holy personalities, there were other spiritual programs such as Dua Kumayl in the Haram, Dua Tawassul in Masjid Jamkaran.
This year, we also got the chance to visit Sultan Ali, the direct son of Imam Muhammad Baqir (a) in Mashhade Ardehal, a small town 2h away from Qum.
With lots of visits and trips to complement classroom learning, we got the chance to visit some eye-opening and inspirational places.
Sports and Leisure
It’s an intensive course, but it wasn’t all about studying! We had loads of fun with sports activities and various trips, including the day trip to Ardehal, where we had BBQ and then went to some waterfall in the freezing weather!!