BLOG from #MEHFA
This blog is about the project called Make Europe hate-free again. This is a youth exchange and we have students from Bulgaria, Georgia, Armenia and Finland. This blog has been written by Katariina, a student from Finland and Nika, from Georgia.
In this project leaders have been used different kinds of methods to teach about human rights, hate speech and media literacy. In this text we are going to explain two methods that has been used here.
On third morning in the project, we were going to eat breakfast. Anniina, one leader from Finland had gave us ”IDs” the night before and told us that ”keep these IDs, you gonna use these later”.
When we arrived to the ISCR, where the breakfast has been hold, there was one member of the project playing an officer. The officer was demanding the IDs and said that we need to fill the application for visa to get the breakfast. At that point I realize that the IDs were for this. I was an elephant and I was wondering why the officer were really rude to me.
My friend Sini was a fox and the officer were much nicer to her and then I realize that elephants were ”the wrong” kind of spieces in this case. I had to fill the application three times and the officer didn’t help, for example I didn’t understood the language in application and she was only saying that we should know the language if we want to come to the breakfast. The rudeness was really hard to me and I was getting a bit angry because of it and also because the foxes and the mooses were getting in easily, especially the mooses were treated like they were the ”high class”.
When I finally get the application right and I get my visa to the breakfast, I was treated still really badly. The guard on the door was really checking me and I was lead to the table were were only bread and tomatoes, not even water. In that point I was realized that these kind of behavior is common in some countries towards immigrants and it made me sad and angry at the same time. I was also thinking that I’m really privileged as a Finn. I don’t know if it is because some Finnish people are used to be treated good in other countries or I just haven’t encounter this kind of behavior.
The ”Role play” method was really awakening. It feels so strange that people are really treating others badly and classifying humans based on nationally, ethnicity or for some other reason.
Every person have their own story of life. Ones are born in rich families and were supported by their families financially or morally, are studying in good schools and have opportunity to get education, when others are born and raised in poor ones without any support from parents, without chance to receive education and get a job and are forced to steal money just to eat something. story of each person is unique and differs from others. that's what we tried to show with activity called privilege walk. For each participant was given different role written on stickers, which they should play while activity.
Before the role play started , they had time to think specifically about their characters( black female doctor, professional football player, boy born in Syria etc) with relaxing background music. they had to imagine their lives. where they may be born, raised, had they received good education or hadn't chance to study, we're supported by family or not, had work or don't had opportunity to get it and so on. After imagining all this things role play started. They made a line.
Speaker was reading different sentences. for example: one step front if family supports you or one step back if had to steal food, because of not having nothing to eat. participants were moving front or back regarding to how they imagined their character. As a result, we could see ho w privileged ones can be, when others aren't. Activity showed how unequal world is and gave them chance to analyze others' and their current and situation and state.