Despite the efforts of many organizations working in the field of human rights, it can’t be said still that the essence of the connection between rights and obligations, dignity and tolerance, personal goals and empathy is fully understood in Bulgaria. This is particularly true for young people living in less-developed areas or belonging to risk groups. If education leads towards gradual discovery and understanding of the self and “the others”, it will be an efficient means of forming common human values, tolerance and respect for human rights, the rights to make our life ON OUR OWN and TOGETHER the way we want it. The project aims at persuading people we will work with that being human beings we are born with equal rights and responsibilities to protect them regardless of our background and specificity. We expect to teach students to be active, capable of mediating situations of conflict, hold public discussions of the issues in the classroom or in school caused by intolerance, lack of understanding and violation of the rights of the others. The project offers an innovative method of educating adolescents about human rights. The methodology underlying the art and drama techniques involves learners in the creative process which is personally made sense of. The latter makes training desired and efficient. Encouraging creativity in an educational and socially important content that has been newly constructed by learners themselves not only helps acquisition of knowledge but also development of cognitive, social and affective skills. 5 settlements in disadvantaged areas will be covered: Targovishte, Zlataritsa, Sliven, D. Tsibar, Kazanlak. The target group is state schools in the five settlements and 30 schools in the region. School and university students will be the direct beneficiaries of the project.
Summary of project results
The project involved nearly 100 students aged between 13 and 17 from Zlatograd, Zlataritsa, Plovdiv, Sliven and Chepelare, who founded 5 youth clubs, each of which prepared one Forum-theatre performance - or a total of 30 performances, which were presented to the widest possible audience during the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to the project, a training program "Jokering of a Forum-theatre performance" was scheduled - topics, curriculum, methodology, practical tasks and all groups underwent training during the held camps. The hands-on activities were a presentation of a real problem related to a violation of human rights, after which the "Joker" invited the audience to try to bring about a positive change in the situation of the victim, by re-enacting the scene and stepping into his role at a moment of their choice and change his behavior in a way that they think is appropriate.