Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Participation of Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to the preparatory measures of the Lifelong Learning Programme

from: http://ec.europa.eu/education/news/news1188_en.htm: "
The European Commission has announced the addendum to the Call for Proposals 2009 (DG EAC/31/08) of the Lifelong Learning Programme (LLP), which allows the Republic of Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to participate in the Lifelong Learning Programme under the preparatory measures phase. The addendum is limited to setting the conditions relevant to applicants established in the Republic of Croatia and in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Their participation is limited to a restricted number of actions, clearly indicated in the text of the addendum. The preparatory measures are funded by the IPA funds (Instrument of pre-accession).For further and detailed information, it is recommended to consult the document attached hereafter: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:C:2009:035:0018:0019:EN:PDF"

For the Lifelong learning Call 2010 it is generally possible for Croatian and Macedonian Schools, Educational institutions and Kindergarten to participate under COMENIUS (Trainings, School Partnerships)and GRUNDTVIG (Trainings). Leonardo Da Vici Mobility is only open for Croatia for the moment.

Friday, 26 June 2009

Vacancy: Learning & Skills Development Co-ordinator (London)




Learning & Skills Development Co-ordinator

Fix Term Contract
35 hours per week

£31,681 - £33,771 salary per annum (includes £3,168 London Weighting)

The Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture, is the only organisation in the UK dedicated solely to the treatment of torture survivors. With our main treatment centre in London and four National centres around the UK, the Medical Foundation offers medical consultation, examination and forensic documentation of injuries, psychological treatment and support, and practical help.

We are looking for an interim Learning & Skills Development Co-ordinator to carryout training needs assessments of organisations that request training or are identified by the Development Team or the Policy and External Affairs Department and any other relevant teams.

The main task of the post holder is to co-ordinate, devise, and ensure that the appropriate training, consultancy and professional development support is delivered to such organisations nationwide with the input of other Medical Foundation staff.

For an informal discussion about this vacancy, please ring the External Learning and Skills Development Team on 020 7697 7774

For an application pack, please visit www.torturecare.org.uk, telephone: 0207 697 3700 or e-mail: jobs@torturecare.org.uk

Closing date: 15th July 2009 at 5pm
Interviews: 23rd / 24th July 2009

We value diversity and welcome applicants from all parts of the community

Global Education on-line training course: the Human Rights Dimension

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS

Human Rights Education: Addressing Global Challenges

The North-South Centre is happy to announce the online training course
Human Rights Education: Addressing Global Challenges offered by the North South Centre and The Network University (TNU).

This global education online learning course is designed for education practitioners, social workers, youth activists, as well as policy and decision makers.

It has been designed to complement the Global Education Guidelines, a pedagogical tool for educators and policy makers to understand and implement Global Education, and share with a wider audience concepts and approaches promoted by the North-South Centre's Global Education programme.

This course, under the main title "Global Education - The Human Rights Dimension", provides an introduction to human rights education as part of the Global Education context, and deals with its concepts, approaches, strategies and action, by considering its interconnections between the global and local.

The course is designed for professionals working in or with global education / human rights education, either as part of international organisations, national educational institutions or those working for national and local civil society organisations. The course also welcomes students with a special interest in the topic.

Course requirements:

Please note that all participants should:
* be in command of the English language;
* be able to spend a minimum of 8 hours per week on course work;
* have basic ICT skills and reliable access to internet ;

Please note that this is a moderated online course. This means that you will work together with other participants online, and no travelling will be necessary.

The upcoming course takes place from 20 July -15 Augustus, 2009.
Subsequent courses are announced on the website.

For additional information concerning the course and for registration (before 1 July) please access the COURSE WEBSITE.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Handbook on values for life in a democracy


The Council of Europe project "Cultural identities, shared values and citizenship" (2006-2008) was launched after the Organisation's 3rd Summit (Warsaw, 2005). It was based on the premise that an awareness and appreciation of Europe's rich diversity of cultures and heritages and how they have interacted with each other over time are essential preconditions for mutual respect, peaceful coexistence, intercultural dialogue, a shared attachment to common values and an emerging European cultural citizenship. One of the outcomes of the project was the Handbook on values for life in a democracy which is structured around a series of key questions to promote discussion among young people about universal human rights and the implementation of core European values. This book encourages the reader to apply these values to a variety of issues. The case studies it presents and the discussion cards are designed to promote an approach to discussion where each participant can:

• develop his or her own point of view in relation to others;
• think about clashes of values and human rights and how they might be resolved in fair, balanced, proportionate and peaceful ways;
• empathise with others' points of views (even if not agreeing with them);
• engage in dialogue over disputed issues rather than in monologues based solely on his or her own point of view or cultural perspective;
• set particular issues and debates into a wider historical, cultural and global context.


These core "procedural" values need to be practised and upheld not only in the law courts but in our everyday dealings with each other. Otherwise they become meaningless and we will cease to have any real sense of commitment to them. Just as we learn skills by practising them, so we acquire these values by practising them.
Author(s) :

ISBN : 978-92-871-6554-1
Format : 16 x 24
No. of pages : 250
Price : 23 €/ 46 $
+ 10% postage

http://book.coe.int/sysmodules/RBS_page/admin/redirect.php?id=36&lang=EN&produit_aliasid=2384

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Letter from the Chair

Dear DARE Network members, friends and colleagues,

It is with great pleasure that I write you this letter. The DARE General Assembly elected a new Board during its annual meeting in Berlin on May 30th. The following persons will serve on the Board for the next two years:

Valentina Cinti (EIP Italia), Vice-Chair
Ingrid Halbritter (Pharos e.V., Germany, Bosnia-Herzegowina)
Daniela Kolarova (Partners Bulgaria), Vice-Chair
Tanveer Parnez (BEMIS, UK)
Georg Pirker (AdB, Germany), Secretary
Wim Taelman (Vormen, Belgium), Treasurer
Frank Elbers (HREA, The Netherlands), Chair

The new Board will make membership development and sustainability (financial and otherwise) of DARE its main priorities. On this occasion I would like to thank the previous Board, which has skilfully guided DARE onto the current path of growth.

I very much look forward to working with you all and hope that together we can continue to develop DARE into a vibrant network that promotes EDC and HRE in Europe.

Warmest regards,
-Frank

EUROCLIO for Human Rights and Democratic Citizenship Education

Since its foundation in 1993, the overall aim of EUROCLIO has been to promote and support the development of history education so that it strengthens peace, stability, democracy and critical thinking. Recognizing that history is a powerful mobilizing force in societies, EUROCLIO promotes the sound use of history education towards building and deepening of democratic societies.

In order to succeed in this mission, EUROCLIO has centered its work on three main pillars of activities:

Human rights, democracy and the rule of law form the core values of the European Union, the Council of Europe and the United Nations today. Developing an understanding of basic human rights, and a respect for them, are key elements of a twenty-first century education. In the classroom history educators have to find ways to explore how Human Rights were interpreted -and ignored- in the past.

Human Rights have been addressed in many of the EUROCLIO activities, such as the production of teaching materials and also for techniques that are used to teach about women’s and minority rights, law and protest, diversity, tolerance and equality. Human Rights Education was the central theme of the 2007 EUROCLIO Annual Conference ‘Human Rights Education: Lessons from History’ held in Bled, Slovenia. The central challenge of this conference was how to use history and citizenship education to contribute to the development of democratic citizenship and forms of participation which promotes social cohesion, respect for diversity and Human Rights within a framework of international understanding.

In 2007, Human Rights were also addressed via the development of teaching materials during the EUROCLIO projects ‘History in Action’. In each case the materials offer opportunities for educators to discuss with their students the lack of freedoms in single party states, inequality, restrictive and oppressive government and crimes against humanity. In the project ‘Connecting Europe Through History’ carried out by EUROCLIO and EUROPAEUM, a series of events and workshops were organized throughout Europe on themes related to European Values such as tolerance, democracy, citizenship, critical thinking and multi-perspectivity.

EUROCLIO remains on the outlook for new human rights projects, perhaps even through the wonderful DARE-network. For more information, please visit our website.

Jonathan Even-Zohar, Euroclio (The Netherlands)

Note from Wim Taelman: DARE members can also contact the Euroclio members from their country for eventual cooperation. These can be found here.

A Reflection on the Hearing/Exchange of Views with the CULT-Committee of the European Parliament on April 2nd 2009

First I have to mention that the invitation to speak to the Education and Culture Committee of the European Parliament in itself is a big success for DARE, since it is the first time DARE was officially asked by a European body to present its view. This step for DARE is something like a crowning glory. But does it make a difference if someone receives a crown and what makes the difference?
After speaking with MEP Doris Pack (EVP) who put a lot of energy in making this hearing come true, I will try to draft some personal reflections with the intention to encourage you to further discussion.

DARE has arrived in the EU logic now. First of all the hearing points out that DARE right now belongs to the actors IN the EU logic. We are no longer outside the institutional logic of the European bodies, but the doors are open now to do more - which by the way has also consequences for DARE´s structure as an NGO.
In this regard I wondered a bit when one of the MEP´s present at the hearing mentioned: “How good you are finally here. We support you already the second period! You should come more often and we wonder why you did not come earlier.”
For me this is a clear indicator that most of the actors on the European policy level do have no idea how bad the (financial and structural) support for NGOs work on level of most of even the EU´s member states is. On the other hand – pragmatically spoken - we should enable ourselves to make more use of this invitation.

The Grant givers logic: At first glance I would describe the reactions and recommendations of the MEP´s as friendly and constructive. By inviting DARE – the already second time by the EU funded network for EDC/HRE – the EU approved their decision to fund EDC/HRE issues in Europe. Out of the Grant Givers logic, the Grant giver defined the field of EDC/HRE as important. The supporting of DARE as network is in this regard a self evident process.

The “Human Rights Trap”: The recommendations given to DARE after the presentation showed that there are some hints: By the EU´s defining of EDC/HRE as an important issue in Europe and by funding DARE and related actors in the field, there is the danger of a political tendency to water down the issues in the field: “Look what we in Europe do and what we as EU do here and how good we support it! Look how bad HR issues are treated elsewhere in the world! You should become more active there! Gender discrimination is incredible important issue for the countries in the south etc”.
In this regard we experienced the typical trap that human rights issues are always important as long as they are bad and happen somewhere abroad. Again to argue for the need for education in this field in Europe and the important role NGO´s play – even for the formal education system - seems to me something that needs to be clearly communicated.
It might be worth discussing if by setting a clear communicative focus on the aspect of Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights and its contribution to citizenship in the EU and its member states we can avoid to fall into this EU´s “Human Rights trap”.

Education and the national level: I do not know how often I have heard this killer phrase.
“Your work is incredible important, but Education is a subject to national policies”.
By the way: when setting the Hearing on the CULT-Committees agenda Education was one of the reasons because of its TOP priority on European level☺…
I would again define this as a trap we have to live with. But to me there seems to be need to turn this in an argumentative way. The EU (but also other grant givers) make EDC/HRE an issue by funding related activities and by this generate a demand. It offers NGO´s the possibility to widest mutual exchange in the field and offers assistance to their working context. However there arises the paradox situation that the member states see no need for proper support of the work of organisations in the field, because they can get funding from elsewhere. DARE can give a lot of examples what happens to the NGO level when funding from abroad ends.

Structural Consequences and arising challenges:
Undoubtly the hearing is a huge step for DARE! The above described obstacles are clearly showing that there is an increasing need to substantially feed and inform the relevant stakeholders on the policy level about EDC/HRE related topics and developments. I see the biggest challenge that with the current structure of the network as a platform moderating exchange and knowledge, facilitating discussion, offering Trainings etc for NGO´s from all over Europe we can not follow the demand to properly feed and constantly react on policy developments on the EU level. Even with a group of people concentrating on advocacy work as we do it currently in Special Interest Group “Advocacy” it is difficult to steady contribute on the required professional level and with the necessary depth of argumentation. Even worse: the better the results of the Special Interest Groups work are, the more the demand on policy level rises for even more expert input from DARE´s side.

This in my opinion can only be solved if DARE manages to establish a professional working structure, that can follow up on this task (which by the way is only one task of the network).

Georg Pirker, Arbeitskreis deutscher Bildungsstätten (Germany)

P.S. The full text of the speech Frank Elbers held at the the CULT is available for download on the DARE website

Multipliers learn about Human Rights: training Course „Human Rights Education in Youth Work“ (International House Sonnenberg), a great success


From April 2nd to 9th altogether 29 young multipliers met in the German Harz Mountains to broaden their knowledge and Human Rights History and Methodology, and to develop skills on how to work about Human Rights with young people. The idea for this course being created on a SIG II meeting in Rome, it was one of the first “Common Projects” of the DARE-network put into action.

The participants came from nine European countries (Italy, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Poland, Cyprus, Germany and others), resembling various fields of work and interest, all related to Youth Work, some being teachers, some social workers, but also a few students and volunteers being active in NGOs working with children and youth.

During the Training Course the main trainers Jochen Dallmer (from the organisation JANUN, Hannover, Germany) and Katja Pötzsch (from the International House Sonnenberg) presented a great variety of aspects and methods concerning Human Rights Education. Participants for example would draw and act out the 30 articles of the UN declaration of Human Rights, or – later during the course – take on different roles in a complex simulation game, showing the difficulties of pursuing Human Rights when it comes to international conflicts.

The programme was truly enriched by a couple of expert speakers, offering two or more workshops on their personal specialities of Human Rights Education. Massimo di Rienzo and Guido Antonelli Costaggini from the Italian organisation “Menougualepiù” arranged a whole colourful day, dealing with Children Rights. In addition Anja Mihr from Berlin who works for the “European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation” in Venice offered two workshops on quite scientific, theoretical questions of HRE, while Larry Fergeson from the “Future Worlds Center” in Cyprus facilitated intense discussions on Human Rights and Global Learning issues.

In addition to the units and workshops at House Sonnenberg, the whole group also spent a day in the University City of Göttingen, meeting representatives of six different NGOs such as “Amnesty International” or the “Society of Threatened Peoples”. Thus the multipliers had a chance to learn first hand about social projects of active organisations linked to the field of Human Rights.

In general everyone involved was very excited about the Training Course and the great chances to gain new perspectives, methods and ideas linked to the topic. For sure the DARE network has an incredible potential for setting up these kind of international learning experiences on a very high quality level, which should be used more often in the future. Many participants expressed their desire to learn more about certain aspects of Human Rights Education, such as “Human Rights and Globalisation”, the “Universal validity of Human Rights” or “Human Rights and Economy”. In any case the staff of the International House Sonnenberg would be happy to make this kind of Spring Academy a regular activity taking place every year.

Katja Pötzsch, International House Sonnenberg (Germany)

News from the Citizenship Foundation: ILDE project

During the last year, Citizenship Foundation has been involved in developing two sets of resources for the ILDE (Initiative for Learning Democracy in Europe) project. This work, funded by the Network of European Foundations - NEF and supported by the Council of Europe is now finalised.

1. The first set of resources focuses on the membership of the EU and how this brings expanded rights to citizens of Europe. The concept was to develop a resource aimed at ‘vocational’ students who are unlikely to develop an international perspective automatically or arising from their career aspirations or home situations. The resource was developed around 7 practical themes like ‘environment, law and order, consumer protection, work, equality, minorities and the wider world (aid)’. Each unit has a wide-ability PowerPoint-based story illustrating some of the key issues and leading to a range of learning activities which are of local and practical relevance for this target audience.
The whole pack is called ‘Europe... and me? - A resource kit on European Citizenship Education

Unit 1: Environment The EU: Creating a greener planet?
Unit 2: Crime and Justice The EU: Protecting us against crime?
Unit 3: Consumer Protection: The EU: Getting us a better deal?
Unit 4: Work The EU: Creating better jobs?
Unit 5: Equality The EU: Giving us equal rights?
Unit 6: Minorities The EU: Helping everyone to feel they belong?
Unit 7: The World The EU: Making the world a better place?

The link to the lesson materials and the PowerPoints can be found on the NEF website. The resources were written for an international audience and thus the words of the stimulus material were kept to a minimum to allow for easy adaptation. The lesson materials are being translated into a range of languages and are already available in English, French and Dutch.

2. The second resource is called ‘Schools for society: Learning democracy in Europe’, A handbook of ideas for action (y Susanne Frank and Ted Huddleston)

This handbook will be of interest to organisations in Civil Society as well as to schools. It distils best policy and practice drawn from across Europe which promote the idea of the whole school as a democratic space. It focuses on the school in its internal organisation and in its relations with the neighbouring community outside the school. The handbook is directed primarily at staff working in Trusts and Foundations who are interested in developing a more strategic funding approach to projects which, at a practical level, strengthen democratic practices in schools and colleges. The book is full of case studies which will also be of interest to community/school developers, governors and heads of schools. As such, it is deliberately conceived to complement the new handbook produced by the Council of Europe which is aimed at the teaching profession and trainers involved in citizenship education.

Ruxandra Ratiu, Citizenship Foundation (UK)

News from the Citizenship Foundation: Young Muslim Leadership network

Citizenship Foundation is launching a new initiative for young people aged between 16 and 21 called the Young Muslim Leadership Network. The aim is to bring together young Muslims to talk about issues that affect the perceived alienation of Muslim Youth domestically and internationally. These young people will be able to get together and contact influential leaders in the media, in politics, law etc to gain a better understanding of the issues.
They will then go on to produce resources that can be used for their peers, teachers, youth workers and police for their local community and beyond. We hope to launch these resources nationally also.
This project is supported by the Department of Communities and Local Government and we have had considerable interest from very reputable and niche organisations who are keen to get involved. There will be three groups, two based in London (North West and East) and one in Birmingham. They will meet regularly to discuss issues and produce these resources.
The project will start with the first discussions in September 2009 with the aim to develop the first resources in March/April 2010.

Ruxandra Ratiu, Citizenship Foundation (UK)

News from the Citizenship Foundation: Paying for It programme update

The Citizenship Foundation’s ‘Paying for It’ programme, in partnership with Aviva is hosting five events across England Scotland to engage Year 10 students (14-15 year olds) in the big economic issues within their communities. The events use workshops run by local professionals working on the issues involved to inform students for a final student led debate chaired by their local Member of Parliament. The events conclude the Paying for It programme which places financial professionals from Aviva into citizenship classes to run active learning sessions on the economic and financial elements of the Citizenship Curriculum.

Ruxandra Ratiu, Citizenship Foundation (UK)

News from the Citizenship Foundation: The Giving Nation Challenge Goes Corporate

The Giving Nation Challenge is a classroom-based active learning programme teaching young people in Britain the importance, role and impact of the Third Sector through its social enterprise initiative. The programme which challenges classes across an entire year group to create a short-lived charity or social enterprise over a 6-week timetable and then compete with their fellow classes for the hearts, minds and donations of the school community is breaking into new territory with the added incentive of corporate volunteers in the classroom. The Challenge, which now involves over 415 secondary schools in England, is supported by the Cabinet Office. The Challenge is not only provided free to schools, but also provides £50 start-up capital to all participating classes along with online tools and classroom resources.

Ruxandra Ratiu, Citizenship Foundation (UK)

British people support legislation protecting human rights

On Monday 15 June 2009 the British Equality and Human Rights Commission launched the most comprehensive research to date into the first ten years of the Human Rights Act. The Human Rights Inquiry found that an overwhelming majority of British people support legislation protecting human rights and where a human rights approach is incorporated into public services both users and providers benefit.

For more information please visit the Commission's website.

The Commission also recently launched a report into the Staying On initiative. The report comes in response to the Education and Skills Act 2008 which will make it compulsory for teenagers to stay in education or training until at least their 17th birthday. The report asks young people to contribute their views on the barriers and inequalities they experience in staying on in education, and makes recommendations to help overcome these issues to ensure that the extra two years in education or training provide the best opportunities for all young people.

The report can be downloaded here.

Tanveer Parnez, BEMIS (Scotland, UK)

Everyone in (Research Summary of the Minority Ethnic LBGT project)

BEMIS, the Black and Ethnic Minorities Infrastructure in Scotland, recently carried out a research to address a very delicate issue in relation to race equality and minority ethnic, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities, who for a long time have been disadvantaged and excluded from having an active citizenship role and where they are valued and respected equally. The research maps out the services in Scotland and in England and the finding shows that there is no specific EM/LGBT culturally sensitive service for the ethnic minorities, asylum seekers and refugee communities in Scotland and people has to seek advice and information from London and other places. This research will help to provide democratic education to the civic society in Scotland and also to the policy and decision makers of such services. We believe in democracy for all and this research will be used as a tool to inform democratic education amongst NGO’s and other sectors in Scotland through various capacity building initiatives.

The report can be downloaded here.

Tanveer Parnez, BEMIS (Scotland, UK)

New DARE member: the School of Education, University of Leicester

The School of Education, University of Leicester is among the departments with the longest history of engagement in teaching and research in the areas of Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education in Britain.

Located in the vibrant and multicultural Leicester, the city which has been associated with the movements of alternative and radical pedagogy, The School of Education shelters world leading research and pioneering teaching at postgraduate level in Democratic Citizenship Education, Human Rights Education, Education for Sustainable development and Innovative and Progressive education. Among the courses offered in the School of Education is the MA in Innovation and Reform, the Postgraduate Certificate in Citizenship Education while it is one of the few departments in UK which offers Initial Teacher Training in Citizenship Education.

Dr Michalis Kakos
Michalis is a lecturer in Citizenship Education and the director of the PGCE (Initial Teacher Education course) in Citizenship education of the University of Leicester. Apart from Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education Michalis’ research interests and experience include intercultural education, social inclusion in education, the political dimension of educational practice and the development of young people's cultural and political identity.

Contact details: Dr Michalis Kakos, School of Education, The University of Leicester, 21 University Road, Leicester, LE1 7RF

Dr Paul Warwick
Dr. Paul Warwick is a lecturer within the School of Education at the University of Leicester. He has worked in the field of curriculum innovation in Education for Citizenship and Sustainable Development since 1995. He has a particular research interest in participatory pedagogy and methods for hearing young people’s voices. Presently he teaches on undergraduate and postgraduate courses concerned with supporting educators in developing Citizenship Education in both primary and secondary schools with a specific focus on incorporating sustainablilty and the global dimension.

Contact details: Dr Paul Warwick, School of Education, The University of Leicester, 15 University Road, Leicester, LE1 7RF

New DARE member: Demokratiezentrum Wien (Democracy Centre Vienna)

The Demokratiezentrum Wien was founded in 2000 and is an academic non-profit organization, strongly oriented to applying and conveying knowledge. It is both an academic research institute and a virtual knowledge centre and deals with basic questions of political culture and the political system of Austria in the European context. It is concerned with processes of democratization and their historical development, with current socio-political debates, with the media society (emphasizing the competent use of media and the decoding of visual messages), as well as with the IT-transformation and the knowledge society. Further emphasis lies on the topics: migration and integration, political participation, and the enlarged European Union.

The virtual knowledge centre is addressing different target groups: students, practitioners in the fields of formal and non-formal education, and a wider public. The web-based information centre and the audiovisual library are accessible in German and to some extent also in English.

The most recent activity in the field of political participation has been the development of the internet-platform polipedia.at. It offers a multimedia wiki-guide to democracy, politics and participation. The content is created independently by young people and actively used by them. Thus they become "prosumers," i.e., producers and consumers in one person. The project demonstrates how modern media, above all the internet, can support political education for young people and foster democratic discourse among them. At the same time, by this means a multimedia textbook for civic education applying social software (wikis, blogs, etc.) has been developed.

Elisabeth Röhrlich, Demokratiezentrum Wien (Austria)

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

New DARE Board Elected

At the General Assembly in Berlin 30 May 2009 the new DARE board was elected to lead DARE through the next 2 years legislature.
Functions are defined between the board members as follows:
Frank Elbers (HREA, The Netherlands ), chair
Valentina Cinti (EIP Italia), vice-chair
Daniela Kolarova (Partners Bulgaria), vice-chair
Tanveer Parnez (BEMIS, UK), member
Ingrid Halbritter (Pharos e.V., Germany, Bosnia-Herzegowina), member
Wim Taelman (Vormen, Belgium), treasurer
Georg Pirker (AdB, Germany), secretary

All board member are looking forward to their future working tasks with DARE, more soon

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

New DARE member: Humanity in Action Germany

Humanity in Action (HIA) is a Euro-transatlantic consortium of currently six organizations (Germany, Poland, France, Netherlands, Denmark, USA) which aims to promote human rights by instilling the values of human dignity and respect for minorities in a new generation of social, cultural, and political leaders.

HIA believes that an important test of a genuine democracy is how it treats its racial, ethnic, and religious minorities, and that the commitment to democratic values cannot be taken for granted. HIA engages student leaders in histories of resistance to institutionalized violations of minority rights in democratic countries, and builds a multi-national, intergenerational network of present and emerging leaders in diverse professional fields who share these commitments.

Humanity in Action is currently developing simulation scenarios for the use in adult education. A recent example is "Understanding the mechanisms of 89: A simulation game on regime change for youth and adult multipliers" – see http://dare-network.blogspot.com/2009/06/89-regime-change-simulation-presented.html

The Berlin HIA office welcomes initiatives for European and transatlantic cooperation projects with other DARE network partners! Please get in touch with Antje Scheidler (Director, Berlin Office) or Anne Stalfort (Director Cooperations).

See www.humanityinaction.org/germany for contact information and more details on our current activities.

1989 Regime Change Simulation Presented at DARE Conference

More than 30 educators from 12 European countries met at the DARE Conference “Pathways Interconnecting History Education and Democratic Citizenship/Human Rights Education in Adult Learning” in Berlin on May 28-30, 2009. This conference was held in conjunction with the Geschichtsforum 09, one of the major German events commenorating the transitions of 1989 (http://www.geschichtsforum09.de/).

Among the best practices presented was a 4h simulation training "Understanding the mechanisms of 89: A simulation game on regime change for youth and adult multipliers". Set in a fictious socialist country at the eve of mass demonstrations, this simulation offers a holistic learning experience on the topic of the European regime changes in 1989ff. The simulation was developed by the transatlantic human rights network HUMANITY IN ACTION (HIA), http://www.humanityinaction.org/ , and financially supported by the German "Bundesstiftung zur Aufarbeitung der SED-Diktatur" http://www.stiftung-aufarbeitung.de/. HIA trainers and Senior Fellows Marta Kozlowska, Wilhelmina Welsch and Simone Müller invite other organizations to use this simulation and share experiences with different participant groups. A toolkit for further use will be published soon at http://www.dare-network.eu/berlin_conference.htm and in the DARE BLUE LINES.


Wilhelmina Welsch (Humanity in Action Deutschland e.V.) and Dagmar Kusa (EUROCLIO European Association of History Teachers) discuss the 89 simulation scenario.

Inauguration of the European Wergeland Centre

Today, 29 May 2009, the European Wergeland Centre was inaugurated in Oslo. The Centre is a European resource centre on education for intercultural understanding, human rights and democratic citizenship. It is a co-operation between Norway and the Council of Europe, located in Oslo. It builds on and will promote the work performed by the Council of Europe and Norway in these areas.

Terry Davis, Secretary General of the Council of Europe greeted the inauguration through a video message. Thorbjørn Jagland, Speaker of the Norwegian Parliament, Jonas Gahr Støre, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Bård Vegar Solhjell, Minister of Education of Norway, were among the high ranking speakers at inaugural ceremony. Thomas Hammarberg, Commissioner for Human Rights, introduced one of the working sessions, while Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni, Director General of Education, Culture and Heritage, Youth and Sport, chaired another session.

About EWC

The European Wergeland Centre (EWC) is a European resource centre on education for intercultural understanding, human rights and democratic citizenship. It is established in cooperation between Norway and the Council of Europe.

The centre is located in Oslo, Norway. The Centre is open to all member states of the Council of Europe, and the main target groups are teachers, teacher trainers, decision makers and multipliers within education for intercultural understanding, human rights and democratic citizenship.

By providing in-service training, carrying out and supporting research, creating networks, serving as a platform and disseminating information and good practices on the field, the Centre aims at becoming a leading professional body of its kind. The working language of the Centre is English.

The European Wergeland Centre is organized as an independent legal entity according to Norwegian law. The core program is financed by a yearly sum from the Government of Norway. The Centre may also receive contributions from other member states, institutions, organizations or donors who wish to cooperate with the Centre and contribute to its work.

For more information: http://www.theewc.org/.