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22/7/2013 - France - Study Session on Human Rights Education
Photograph available in Image Bank

(ANS – Strasbourg) – Twenty-four participants, fourteen different nationalities, thirteen different organizations, seven days, one goal: Human Rights Education.

Between July 7th and 14th, DBYN and the Council of Europe organized a study session at the European Youth Centre in Strasbourg. The session was called «Orienting DBYN towards Human Rights Education». Its aim was to train youth trainers to Human Rights Education, one of the Council of Europe’s core values. This project was a follow-up to the World Congress on the Preventive System and Human Rights, which took place at the Pisana, Rome, in January 2009.

The background and level of experience of the participants varied greatly. Some had been part of the DBYN network for several years, others for a few days only. Some others came from overseas and simply joined the session to have an insight into the European view of Human Rights. All took part in the session expecting to find out more about Human Rights, to meet new challenges, new people, and to learn something they will be able to teach in return in the spirit of Don Bosco.

After several activities designed to get participants to know each other, the week started with a theoretical approach to understanding themes of Human Rights. Then, practice replaced theory as participants were able to exercise their competence and undertake activities in teams, always under the watchful eye of the team of trainers. Training trainers is not possible with theory only, and participants were pleased to be able to express their creativity. As feedback is essential to reflect the work achieved and to learn from possible mistakes, the debriefings provided by the team of trainers were well received. Everybody agreed that the week was well organized, and that the group was excellent.

This DBYN study session represented many things: the willingness of young trainers to improve their skills to train future generations of volunteers, the possibility of learning more about human rights and educating themselves on this specific topic in order later on to be able to teach others about it. It was also an opportunity to meet new people, to create a network within DBYN, to work with a team of skilled trainers, and, more than anything else, to create memories.

One of the young people who took part in the Study Session reported: “Best memory of the week? Thursday night. The group went into town together, and at some point, gathered in front of the Cathedral to do a warming-up exercise. Slowly, tourists and people passing by became curious and joined the circle. They did not know each other, they had perhaps never heard of DBYN before, but they simply wanted to take part in the activity, to be united with other people, and to share a good moment”.

DBYN is focusing strongly on integrating Human Rights into its way of working. Next week another project is scheduled to run in Belgium.

Published 22/07/2013

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