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Frontpage News 2014 Fighting xenophobia with unconventional means

Porridge
Photo: Whatansu

Fighting xenophobia with unconventional means

  • There are many ways of fighting xenophobia - 'fear towards foreigners'. Youngsters involved in a project supported by the Lithuanian NGO fund decided to tackle the issue in a rather unconventional way; namely through the act of eating porridge.

    “Show difference- discover similarities”: Lithuania without xenophobia”. This was the slogan that youths from six different countries came up with during a workshop organised by the project ESu (I am the EU). The participants at the workshop were all foreigners working or studying in Lithuania and were gathered at the workshop to share their experiences of being foreigners in Lithuania and to come up with ideas on how to fight xenophobia.

    Photo competition

    One of the ideas they come up with was the photo competition “How to eat your porridge”, asking people to take pictures of themselves while eating porridge. The idea behind the competition is that while food is something that brings people together, it is also a marker for cultural differences.  People from different cultures eat different kinds of food and also consume their food in different ways. The message of the competition is that while we are all similar, we are also all unique and that is something that should be celebrated.

    Important funding

    Through the Funds for Non-Governmental Organisations, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway have allocated about €160 million to strengthen civil society in the 16 beneficiary countries of Grants. This makes the funds one of the biggest funding schemes for civil society in Central Europe. The support aims both to strengthen the capacity of the sector itself as well as support non-governmental organisations in their efforts to promote human rights, democracy and equality.

    Click here to watch a video about the project

    Click here to see more photos from the project

    Click here to read more about the NGO programmes

  • Country:

    Lithuania


    Project title:

    Promoting tolerance, human rights and creating socially safe living environment for foreign nationals residing in Lithuania, "ESu"

    Project number:

    LT04-0008

    Priority sector:

    Civil Society

    Grant:

    € 30623

    Status:

    Completed

    Project promoter:

    Let's destroy

    Type of Institution:

    Other type of NGO

    Project duration:

    11 months

    Project cost:

    € 34,025

    Grant from:

    EEA Grants

    Project “ESu” (I am EU) – is a youth response to rapidly spreading virus of xenophobia which hinders full-fledged enjoyment of the rights for young people migrating over Europe for education, work or life. Project aims at fostering active citizenship through promoting volunteering and promotion of human right through raising awareness on xenophobia. Based on public opinion surveys educational tools for building positive attitude towards ethnic and religious diversity shall be developed, multicultural dialogue fostered through cross-sectoral activities involving NGOs, schools, public sector including round table discussions, human rights awareness workshops, recruitment/training of volunteers, production of video materials for dissemination online and in schools. Month-long awareness raising campaign shall cover schools in 2 biggest cities and continue in cinemas around Lithuania. Project promoter and related NGOs shall build their capacity, including study-visit to the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration. Target groups and beneficiaries: students of schools, colleges and universities, immigrants, society at large.