ReAct Against Hate
Project co-financed by the Erasmus+ program of the European Union
ReAct Against Hate project is the outcome born from the need to act in the context of hate speech spreading across Europe.
In recent years, the spread and normalization of hate speech throughout Europe has contributed to the radicalization of individuals and collectives against others fueling hate crimes towards marginalized groups.
From everyday discrimination and stigmatization to direct attacks on Roma, migrants, and minority faith communities in everyday life and on social media, the hate narrative gradually translated into violence, weakening the social cohesion between communities, young people and further threatening democracy, equality, human rights and the rule of law across the continent.
The most targeted groups being vulnerable young people with disadvantaged background, belonging to ethnic minorities, migrants, refugees.
The consequences of hate speech phenomenon among young people being marginalisation, social exclusion, isolation, fear, anxiety, mental health problems that lead to two extreme behaviour suicide or radicalizations manifested by acts of juvenile delinquency.
The project consortium, made up of 8 youth organizations and institutions facing the same issues in local communities, decided to implement ReAct Against Hate project to address hate speech and discrimination against young people through human rights education:
- Asociația Be You;
- Sdruzhenie Evropeyski Proekti V Balgaria;
- Centrul European de Tineret Breclav ZS;
- Aux Couleurs du Deba;
- Europejskie Forum Mlodziezy „FRATERNITAS”;
- Agencia Local De Juventude Das Beiras E Serra Da Estrela;
- Akdeniz Anadolu Lisesi.
AIM AND OBJECTIVES
The project aimed to improve skills and knowledge of youth workers in human rights education to counter hate speech phenomenon and discrimination among targeted young people.
The project objectives were:
- to increasing knowledge about how to use human rights education in helping young people to get out of discrimination and hate speech situations;
- to improve the ability to adapt tools and non-formal education methods based on human rights education in order to design activities for affected young people by hate speech and discrimination;
- to provide a space for sharing experiences and best practices for human rights education in the context of hate speech;
- to diversify non-formal education methods at organizational level in order to implement projects and activities that will reduce hate speech among affected young people ( ethnic minorities, migrants, refugees).
The project involved 27 participants and 2 trainers from Romania, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Italy, France, Poland, Portugal and Turkey who took part in the mobility of the project which was a training course hosted in Aninoasa community from Dambovita, Romania. The training course was implemented between 18-26 July 2021.
Participants were youth workers with a diverse background in education field, aged above 20 years, with minimum 1 years of experience in youth work, work with young people with disadvantaged background facing socio – economic obstacles, young people belonging to ethnic minorities and young people with migrant and refugee background, youth workers with experience in facilitation, knowledge of non-formal education methods.
During the 8 days of mobility participants were involved in non-formal education activities as practical workshops on hate speech, discrimination, human rights and human rights education topic. The topics were approached through participatory non-formal education methods as teambuilding, group work, world caffee, debates, simulations, discussions, role plays, practical exercises, round table, cultural visits which assured the best setting for learning and sharing good practices.
The training course was followed by dissemination activities. Partner organizations and youth workers followed-up on the project organizing various dissemination activities ( workshops, meetings, debated, discussions, online campaigns, etc.) in the local community with the aim to raise awareness on hate speech phenomenon and discrimination among young people, on causes and consequences and how can be used human rights education to counter it.
The project had a major impact on the participants, the partner organizations, at local, national and European / international level.
The achieved outcomes and results contribute to reduce and prevent on long-term hate speech among young people in the participating local communities by using methods and tools based on human rights education in youth activities.
As a result of participation to the mobility, youth workers are able to identify forms of hate, to analyse different media contents that might contain hate speech, they know the situation of hate speech and local realities of young people across Europe, they know the national and European legislative regulations that counter hate speech and discrimination, they are able to plan actions and activities based on human rights education to counter hate speech among young people.
The project offered a solid ground for the exchange of experiences and good practices among youth workers and partner organization in project topic and youth activities. The training course equipped youth workers with tools and methods to design effective activities for young people approaching hate speech and discrimination through human rights education. Youth workers acquired the know-how for developing action plans and implementing them properly taking into account young people socio-cultural background.
Partner organizations increased their capacity to operate at European level, made exchange of good practices in project topic and youth policies. They are able to deliver qualitative activities having a more dynamic and professional environment within the organization and are ready to integrate good practices, tools based on human rights education in their activities.
Young people who represent the indirect beneficiaries were involved in dissemination activities becoming more aware on the causes and consequences of hate speech and discrimination.
On national and international level the project has potential to be replicated, to insipre similar actions and activities, motivating NGOs and youth workers to start designing activities and actions in their local communities to fight against hate speech and discrimination among young people using human rights education.