The Elephant and Jumbo
The Elephant Learning in Diversity has been established by Jumbo Klercq in 2008.
The Elephant is also a symbol for learning. Elephants have a long term memory. An elephant has a thick skin, a head full of ivory, and as everyone who has seen a circus parade knows, proceeds best by grasping the tail of its predecessor Elephants may storm through a window, but they also are able to dance in a chest full of porcelain.
They are massive, but also fragile in the way they are moving. An elephant never walks alone. Elephants are social animals. They might live together as a group, but there is also a lot of diversity. And elephants are learning in diversity, as human beings do as well.
There is als a diversity of quotiations and proverbs about elephants:
“An elephant is a mouse with an operating system”
“A gentle hand may lead even an elephant by a hair” (iranian proverb)
“An elephant is a mouse built to government specifications.”
“When elephant steps on a trap, no more trap” (african proverb)
“A camel makes an elephant feel like a jet plane.” (quotation of Jacqueline Kennedy-Onassis)
“When an elephant is in trouble, even a frog will kick him” (hindu proverb)
You even can use the elephant as a metaphor in the learning process. Try it and questioning your self: what does an elephant brings me? what is the elephant saying to me? what is my bad elephant? what is my dirty elephant? what is my lovely elephant? how can I become my own elephant?
The Elephant is also linked to Jumbo. Who is Jumbo?
I am working in the Dutch adult education for more than 30 years. Original active as trainer in a residential folkhighschool I have explored the principles of Grundtvig, Paolo Freire, Oscar Negt, who give me the inspiration to build a job career in adult learning.
I have worked for Volkshogeschool Ons Erf, Driekant opelding & advies, Odyssee en Stavoor.
During 1990 and 2007 I was the initiatior of several informal international networks like European Education Network (EEN) and the International Consortium of Intergenerational Programmes (ICIP). I was partner in European projects like GLOPS Towards Understandings Muslims, (TUM)Network Intercultural Learning Europe (NILE), On a way to an Open Society.
I was coordinator ofPre-Retirement Education In Europe(PREE), Reintregation of Older Workers (Eurowork Age), Integration of Migrants Women Iinitatives (IMWI), Learning for Active Citizenship in Europe (LACE), Pan-European Forum for Education of The Elderly (PEFETE-network), Intergenerational Portfolio Management (IPM).
I am secretary of Learn for Life, Dutch Platform for International Adult Education and I have been board member (2003-2004) and vice-president (2005-2008) of the European Association of Education of Adults.