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Antiracism Education Workshops Interactive workshops to foster mutual and lasting understanding among young people

Racism and discrimination towards the Roma community is currently increasing among younger people in Hungary. Tackling this rising discrimination is a difficult problem. However trying to change the attitudes among non-Roma young adults is a way to reshape how the Roma community will be treated in the future.

In 2013 the Foundation funded a series of antiracism education workshops for secondary schools in Hungary, delivered by the Independent Theatre (“IT”). This organisation has been creating and performing theatre plays for nearly ten years that primarily focus on social issues. Their play “Feather Picking” is based on documented personal stories, legal cases and hate crimes afflicting both Roma and non-Roma people.

This year the Foundation is currently funding another series of workshops with the programme expanding its scope to include universities, in particular students of professions which in the future will work with Roma communities e.g. teachers, social workers and health workers. The objective of the workshops is to educate and engage with young people illustrating the challenges faced by their peers within the Roma community and hopefully helping them to better understand the social issues. The two part workshops are interactive using peer Roma and non-Roma trainers, so that the participants feel more comfortable expressing their views around racism, discrimination and the Roma community with those of a similar age.

The 2014/15 programme will also include community actions, which with the support of IT trainers, will be developed and implemented by the students who have taken part in the workshops. The community actions will focus on social issues and disseminate the message of the workshops to a wider audience through creative projects such as public art or community theatre. Through the community action projects the young people will learn to work together and build their social citizenship.

The Feather Picking project has been awarded a 2014 Social Marie Prize for social innovation. The project was selected out of 35 nominated projects from across Austria, Hungary and the Czech Republic.

For more information on the play “Feather Picking” and the Independent Theatre please click here.