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Open Your Eyes

Children and youth Completed
2014-10-01 - 2015-10-31
275 079,38 PLN
247 153,41 PLN
Project description
The Podlasie region has been home for many a national, ethnic and religious minority for centuries. Surprisingly, the level of cultural and social awareness has been very low in the Białystok community. Local people are strongly individualised and show no interest in other cultures, as reported by the Białystok Community Tolerance Diagnosis. Meanwhile, a growing population of migrants predominantly from Chechnya and of non-European college students has triggered divides into 'us' and 'them'. Research suggests that these issues are rarely addressed in schools or in family environment. Racism and violence against national minorities and migrants have been on the rise.
The project aimed at encouraging youth in Białystok secondary schools to pro-actively respond to acts of discrimination.
The project helped reach out to a group of 28 students, including several Chechens, to build their capacity to respond to acts of discrimination and to engage in anti-discrimination initiatives for their peers.
The project offered a series of workshops on themes such as stereotypes, multiculturalism, prevention of discrimination on the grounds of age, gender, origin, ethnicity; it also offered space for Polish and Chechen youth to explore the traditions, history and culture of the region. During the winter school break, project participants gained video production skills, learned about image-based story telling, sound recording and film editing. Each project participant completed an internship in a non-governmental organisation of his or her choice and participated in implementing one of 14 mini-projects focused on preventing exclusion, xenophobia and racism.
The project partner, Widok Cultural Education Association, helped design and deliver video production workshops for youth.
We use the grant for capacity building