“Youth Center Perspektiva” implemented the project “Active ARTivist’s”, which started in April 2022 and finished in October 2022. The project Active ARTivist-s aimed at empowering and raising awareness of young people, youth workers, activists, creative youth and young artists to use art as a tool to counter negative narratives, hate speech, discrimination and stigmatization. Through the combination of artistic methods and non formal education the project will enable young people to combine different tools in producing artistic products.
According to a study conducted by Commissioner Against Discrimination, European Union and Council of Europe in Albania, nearly 60 percent of respondents think that hate speech prevails massively in the country. Even in the most vulnerable groups to discrimination, nine out of ten respondents think that hate speech is very widespread. Most of them, about 70 percent, claimed that the most common television programs that most often spread hate speech are political debates and less reality shows. Ethnic swearing, incitement to hatred and jokes about ethnic minorities are massively perceived by nearly 70 percent as forms of hate speech. Nearly 60% of respondents from vulnerable groups have personally experienced hate speech and have also heard of others who have experienced it.Another form of hate speech is seen in the study as tarnishing one’s reputation. So, groups in need are more active to take action if they are witnessing a situation with hate speech compared to the general population. Therefore by implementing the project we addressed the above mentioned issues which were pointed out.
As learned from the legacy of the No Hate Speech Movement and hundreds of activists engaged in the campaign, we would like to bring to Albania the same methods in using art as a proven powerful tool in countering negative elements in society, as well as promoting freedom of art.
Through the combination of artistic methods and non formal education the project involved young people with specific focus on youth and other minority groups, national and religious minorities, young refugees in transition to adulthood, young people with disabilities, LGBTQI young people, young women and girls to combine different tools in producing artistic products.
The project includes several activities such as, the first activity was the training “Active ARTivist’s”, which was held in Durrës, from 19-24th April. The training was attended by 30 people from different communities, aged 15-30 years old. The training was in non-formal education format and included interactive methods with informative sessions, a lot of exercises and comprehensive inclusive games. The activities included creative, innovative and artistic works, where the participants also had the opportunity to create activities through their talents.
This project continues with follow ups from the participants that were in the training but not only.
Follow up activities that will be implemented are:
- Community Action on World Skills Day
- Community Action in Supporting the Victims of Hate Crimes
- Community Action “Clean up day”
- Production of Counter Narratives
- Five workshops with young people
- One graffiti
Through the implementafion of this project, we provided opportunities for young people to design, implement and coordinate workshops where youth empoer youth, prer to peer learning and raising public awareness about the related issues such as combating and preventing hate speech, discrimination and stigmatization.
This project is funded by European Youth Foundation through the Council of Europe.