Developing Anti-Oppressive Practice in International Mobility Projects

       Training course, Kljuc/Bosnia and Herzegovina

08.-17.02.2016

Three representatives of SPPMD, Council for Prevention of Juvenile Delinquency, participated in the training course “Developing Anti-oppressive practice in international mobility projects”, that took place in Kljuc, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North East part of the country, from 08-17.02.2016 and it’s the first part of the bigger project, which will be followed by implementation phase of six months in each of the participating countries and the Evaluation Seminar on 03-09.10.2016 in Novi Sad, Serbia.

The Training course lasted for 8 days and the participating countries in this project were Macedonia, Serbia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Montenegro, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Portugal and Estonia.

During the training course we have looked through the different types of oppression, understanding of the oppression, the Thompson model of oppression (on personal, cultural and structural level), oppression and conflict, active listening, active learning circles, the stereotypes in Europe, and our role in anti-oppressive practice within international youth work and creating common practices that need to be followed for its implementation.

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The world is not an equal place, and not all have the same opportunities. Power and privilege can play out in our group dynamics in destructive ways. For the good of all, we must challenge words and actions that marginalize, exclude or dehumanize others. We can only identify the ways that power and privilege play out when we are conscious and committed to understanding how supremacy, patriarchy, classism, heterosexism, ageism and other systems of oppression affect us all.

Oppression is the use of power to dis-empower, marginalize, silence or otherwise subordinate one social group or category, often in order to further empower or privilege the oppressor.  The Anti-Oppression network seeks to recognize the oppression that exist in our society, and attempts to reduce its impact and eventually equalize the power imbalance in our communities.

The idea is that no single oppression holds more weight than another, and that we all have a role in combating oppression and unequal power dynamics.

Personal Responsibility

Practicing anti-oppression work in real terms is not only confronting individual examples, or confronting social examples, it is also confronting ourselves and our own roles of power and oppression in our communities and the bigger picture. You may be a person that would never think to ever say anything racist/sexist/classist etc., by not realizing the power that you hold, and how your actions affect other people you will inevitably fall into sustaining and contributing to a larger system of oppression. Developing anti-oppression practices is life-long work. No single workshop is sufficient for unlearning our socialization within a culture built on multiple forms of oppression.

In order to understand how the power works, we have to learn the rules of the game and play the best that we can, the tool to fight against oppression is education.

Something more about the project:

Aims of the project

– Teach the pedagogical approaches of anti-oppressive practice and how to effectively implement this into non-formal education with young people and youth workers, teachers or mentors.
– Promote the area of the Western Balkans for further cooperation in projects under the Erasmus Plus framework.
– Identify common issues of inclusion and participation for young people in the EU and Western Balkans, then suggesting methods and approaches to overcome these.
– Address areas of conflict related to all partners national realities, identify what lies and the core of each and promote empathy as a method of resolution.
– Look at reflective practice as another tool in managing anti-oppressive practice.
– Develop a common understanding of anti-oppressive practice within international youth work and create common practices that need to be followed for its implementation.

Developing anti-oppressive practice in International mobility projects is a project that consists of four main activities:
1. Training Course. Kljuc, Bosnia and Herzegovina – 08.-17.02.2016.
2. Development of publication, Mar-Aug 2016.
3. Evaluation Meeting and launch of publication, Novi Sad, Serbia – 03.-09.10.2016.
4. Local launch of publication and website in each country, Oct-Dec 2016.

 

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