Econostrum | Economic News in the Mediterranean



"We need to educate people about citizenship"

With the support of the Secretariat of the UfM

The "Forming responsible citizens" project, which has been approved by the Union for the Mediterranean and is founded on a government/NGO partnership, aims to contribute to instilling values of interdependent and sustainable development, freedom and gender equality from school age. Chiara Guidetti, managing director of Ideaborn, explains the issues involved in this approach for Mediterranean women.

Chiara Guidetti, managing director of Ideaborn
Chiara Guidetti, managing director of Ideaborn
How did the "Forming responsible citizens" project start?

Chiara Guidetti: "Since the advent of the Arab springs, we have been approaching the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) to offer our experience in teaching citizenship. Until then our experience had been gained in South America. That led to the "Forming responsible citizens" scheme in the Mediterranean being approved by the UfM in 2014. We will be rolling it out in cooperation with local NGOs in Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia. We are also relying on partnerships with the respective Education Ministries. We are hoping to have an estimated budget of €730K, some of which will be funded by the Norwegian government."
What are the project’s specific aims?

C.G.: "Firstly the project aims to ensure citizenship education is seen as a way of preventing violence, particularly against women and girls. Then we will look at the content of textbooks for ten to fifteen-year-olds in schools in the three countries, working closely with the Education Ministries to establish good practices. We want to involve teachers and students in the project so that they take ownership of the various initiatives and continue them beyond the thirty months of the programme delivery.

"Essential for women's economic integration"

Photo UfM
Photo UfM
How can it help promote women's economic integration?

C.G.: "Of course we're talking about children here, but this early-years education is essential for women's economic integration. It's a way of raising awareness of citizenship beyond gender boundaries. It is not only aimed at pupils but also teachers, who through this project, will be able to network and exchange good practices.
It's a way of changing the stereotypes we see in girls' education.

Friday, May 15th 2015

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