Program: Erasmus+ Youth
Duration: 2017 – 2019
Participating countries: Poland, Spain, Belgium, Luxembourg
According to the report “Antisemitism Worldwide 2014 General Analysis” done by the Tel-Aviv University Kantor Center For the Study of Contemporary European Jewry, “The year 2014 has been one of the worst years in the last decade, 2004-2014. in fact, it was the second worst year after 2009.Troubling and even alarming reports kept coming in from many countries, especially from Western Europe and North America, monitoring hundreds and sometimes over a thousand antisemitic manifestations and incidents of various types per country. The tendencies that characterized this difficult year, in which violent, verbal and visual expressions of antisemitism abounded, continued in the beginning of 2015, with increasing murderous and other attacks”.
The statistics show that in 2014 there were 766 violent antisemitic acts in Europe with the highest rate in Western Europe (France, Germany, Belgium and UK). As the figures show, it is not a matter of just one country, but of all Europe as such incidents happen in different countries. This is the reason why we need to act on international and European level in order to be able to suggest solutions that might be applicable in all European countries.
In this sense, the project we are presenting, needs to be delivered within an international consortium to provide the widest possible spectrum of its realization and target group.
The best way to fight inequity and any types of racism is through education. Our project not only talks about Jewish culture, but also about social problems that are common for all of us.
The project will deliver videos covering 3 important topics:
– racism and Holocaust
– social inclusion of disabled people
– the phenomenon of immigration.
Theme 1: Perspectives on the Holocaust
This course explores the ways in which the Holocaust continues to affect people nowadays (Jews and non Jews) and it explains what it means to live as a Jew today. The course will try to talk about the existence of evil and suffering basing on the tragic past event that Happened in Europe it’s origins and whys. It will challenge course participants to contemplate universal values of human life and historical events that led to such tragic event as Holocaust was.
Theme 2: Social Inclusion
Inclusion as a movement advocates for the opportunity for all people to fully participate in society. While there has been much progress on eliminating the historical marginalization of people with disabilities, people with disabilities still experience many types of barriers, physical and architectural as well as attitudinal and cultural, to their full participation as equal and valued members of our communities. This course draws on a variety of sources—including classic Jewish teachings from the Torah, the Talmud and Midrash, and Jewish thinkers and mystics through the ages as well as social science research, legal theory, and accounts from people with disabilities—to explore the limits of our own perception, the inherent dignity of humanity, social responsibility, and the importance of ethical practice.
Theme 3: The Immigration Debate
In today’s society, immigration and the status of refugees are political hot-button issues. On the one hand, as a society we must be compassionate and always seek to help others in need, especially those who are most unfortunate of all: victims of oppressive and brutal regimes, religious discrimination or even ethnic cleansing. How, however, do we balance our kindness and hospitality with national security concerns? The Torah offers illuminating insights on this topic.
The above mentioned subjects were selected on purpose to talk about problems that have no nation, but they are common to us as these kind of social problems can be encountered everywhere.
On the other hand the videos are very special as the above-mentioned social problems are tackled from a perspective of Jewish culture and values.
The second deliverable of our project will be an innovative working methodology conceived and designed together with young people. By the working methodology, we mean a plan and guidelines how to use the above-mentioned videos as a starting point in youth non formal education. The methodology will consist of various methods (such as drama, NVC etc.) to show to young people different opinions and points of view and teach them to think independently and understand well the above-mentioned problems that our videos will touch. The videos will be prepared by the experts in the fields, but the plan and the guidelines of the working methodology will be worked out by both youth educators and young people from partner countries.
Furthermore the project is a continuation of the European battle for tolerance, equity and anti-semitism. We could mention here the most recent events such as the International Parliamentary Conference on Combating Antisemitism at the Bundestag in Berlin organised by the Coalition for Combating Antisemitism.