Sunday, 4 May 2014

Get to know the Antirumors Campaign in Barcelona!

In the framework of a Grundtvig Jobshadowing, Anne Stalfort (from DARE member Humanity in Action) had the chance to study the Antirumors Campaign in Barcelona - a broad local initiative against xenophobia, anti-immigrant attitudes and racism. The many different activities and tools within the Antirumor Campaign are developed by the Antirumors Net, a network of about 200 community organisations and 200 individuals in Barcelona. The campaign is technically coordinated and co-financed by the Barcelona City Council.

Examples of Best Practices

The members of the Antirumors Net have developed and distributed a wide range of tools linked to the realities of the different neighbourhoods. Here are some:

This reusable plastic cup for street parties and neighborhood festivals makes people think about their own prejudices and encourages action.

Similar thought-inspiring bookmarks were distributed during the World Book Day on April 23 (on this day, people in Barcelona give each other roses and books as a gift).

A comic book series (currently 3 issues) has been developed to respond to some of the most popular anti-immigrants stereotypes. Each comic ends with a ‘Did you know?’ section that provides official data about the subject.

You can download a copy (in Catalan) here.

Catalogue of Activities to Combat Rumors and Stereotypes

As a result of four years of experience, the “Catalogue of Activities to Combat Rumors and Stereotypes” describes in 90 pages 32 different good practices to choose from. Activities range from street theatre and audiovisual workshops to trainings for journalists and teachers. The catalogue is available for download (in Catalan language) here.

The Antirumor Agent

Interested citizens of Barcelona can participate in a free 12h course and become an Antirumor Agent. The training course empowers individuals to reduce discrimination by putting a human face on the stereotypes, counteract negative prejudices with facts and spread the campaign. Strong emphasis is put on a non-paternalistic, participatory approach. There is a standard curriculum, but there are also specialized courses to re-train agents or for incorporating diverse realities in different neighbourhood. Have a look at the contents here (in Catalan).

Website and Newsletter

The Antirumors website connects the more than 400 members of the network and offers onlines guides, news and background material Additionally, a regular newsletter (currently 25 issues) communicates upcoming neigborhood activities, antirumor agent courses and available materials (currently 25 issues).

Want to know more? Check the EU-MIA Research Report

EU-MIA (European Migrant Integration Academy) selected the Barcelona Antirumors Campaign as one of ten functioning practices in the field of integration at city and neighbourhood level. As a result, in January 2014 a research report was published online in English language. The report is based on interviews with stakeholders in Barcelona. At the moment, this 24-pages booklet “The BCN Anti-Rumour Strategy and the BCN Anti-Rumour Network” is the only detailed source on the Antirumor campaign available in English. This is going to change soon, because …

… Transfer to 10 more European Cities – CoE´s “C4i”-Project

C4i is a 2014-2015 project under the Intercultural Cities programme of the Council of Europe, funded by the European Commission. It aims to provide methodological know-how to cities which implement intercultural integration strategies. C4i has been inspired by the Antirumors Campaign in Barcelona. Participant cities in the 18-months project are: Amadora (PT), Bilbao (ES), Botkyrka (SE), Erlangen (DE), Limerick (IE), Loures (PT), Lublin (PL), Nuremberg (DE), Patras (GR) and Sabadell (ES). In the framework of C4i, the City Council of Barcelona will translate some of the Catalan materials to English, among them a dossier on lessons learned and the Guide for Antirumor Agents. Hopefully, these sources will be published soon on the C4i website!