Work plan: Art for the Young, the Queer, the Feminists of Eastern Europe

Project background

One of the fields that CDN, as a capacity building network, prioritises to tackle in the Central and Eastern Europe is gender: gender roles, patriarchy, sexism, women emancipation, LGBTQ+ rights, queer theory, these are some topics on which gender working group aims to raise awareness and empower the youth on. The importance of Gender issues are especially vital in the Central and Eastern Europe. Gender working group has been active for almost a decade now and this project is an idea of the members.

The Central and Eastern Europe is still very conservative and patriarchal compared to Western Europe. According to the data of countries that make their data available through Eurostat, the worst domestic violence and femicide situations across Europe is Montenegro, Latvia, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Hungary, Bosnia and Croatia. Countries like Serbia, Ukraine, Poland, Turkey or Caucasus countries are not included in the data set but it is a very well know fact, that the situation is not any better in those countries. The public and private spaces are not safe for women. Looking at the political representation, only 6 of the 52 leadership positions in Eastern Europe are occupied by female leaders as of 2019. The progress towards gender equality is so slow that even Council of Europe only recently adopted guidelines to its 47 member states on tackling sexism, including the first internationally-agreed definition. Looking at the LGBT+ rights, members of the LGBT+ community in Eastern Europe don’t have safe public spaces to express their gender and sexual orientation openly. The Gay Pride is mostly banned in Eastern European countries and where it is not banned, it can only take place under heavy security, limiting the LGBT+  access to political spaces as well.

What will we do and why?

This project has the goal of tackling the gender issue and representation in private and political spaces in Eastern Europe from both female and LGBT+ perspectives. However, with this project we would like to firstly enlarge the local, closed safe spaces with young activists of different genders and sexualities from the Central and Eastern Europe. Through international youth activities we will provide a bigger, intercultural space for young people of various genders and sexualities to interact with each other, share struggles and learn from each other. In the last phase of the work plan, we will carry the safe space to public space. We will enable the activists to interact with wider public through using art as a communication tool.

Our AIM with this workplan is to understand power dynamics in patriarchal and cis-heteronormative societies in order to empower young women, trans-women, trans-men, non binaries and LGBT+ community to broaden the safe space and claim more private and political space through non-formal education and art.

By providing the platform to discuss the shared experiences and counteracting strategies, we would like to: 

  • Build understanding in the group about the different ways in which power can operate in society and reflect on possible unaware perpetuation of the existing power relations; 
  • Create safe space for young Eastern European activists from gender- and sexual orientation minorities where they share experiences of daily private and political struggles from different contexts; 
  • Consider different strategies for challenging dominant power relations and equip them with tools and techniques to vigorously stand up in their respective struggles; 
  • Explore using art as a tool to expand the safe space in providing visibility to gender and sexual orientation minorities; 
  • Explore and establish cooperation with the initiatives / organizations / individual activists on international level dealing with the same issues locally.

Project summary

This project consists of three activities, with which we would like to stress the importance of art, inclusivity and human rights. The project target group are the young people from the Central and Eastern Europe (Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Greece, Kosovo*, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Serbia, Turkey, Ukraine).


1st phase –  Art as a shelter: A room of our own

The first event of the Work plan is a 5 day international training aiming to understand power dynamics and how power operates in patriarchal societies in order to empower young women to broaden safe space and claim more private and political space through art.

Date: April 2020

Duration: 5 full working days

Location: To be announced

Call for Prepteam

Call for Participants


2nd phase – Good, Bad or Queer

The phase two is an organic continuation of the phase one and draws attention at challenging cis- and heteronormativity as a dominant power and aims at engaging  and  mobilising  LGBT+ young  people  in  taking  ownership  in  advocating for their rights in their national contexts; We want to contribute to overcoming the binary understanding of gender and sexuality and maintstream this discourse in the (Green) youth organisations.

Date: July 2020

Duration: 5 full working days

Location: To be announced

Call for Prepteam

Call for Participants


3rd phase – Art for freedom: Free Yourself and the Rest will Follow

The final phase which comprises of Local Actions in the project countries, that will be partially developed during the previous phase aims to broaden the closed safe spaces of young women, trans-persons, non-binaries and LGBT+ community by visibilising their identities and the struggles to wider public using non-formal methods (i.e. art) as a communication channel in order to challenge the normativity in the society.

Date: September/October 2020

Duration: Optional

Location: Participating countries

Call for local actions

Methodology

The program will be based on the principles of non-formal education and intercultural learning. We strive for active, inclusive and direct communication and transfer and sharing of knowledge. Sessions will be balanced between theoretical inputs, training, workshops, discussions, reflection, planning, brainstorming and other interactive methods of learning.

This Project is supported by the European Youth Foundation of Council of Europe.

*All references to Kosovo, whether to the territory, institutions or population, in this text shall be understood in full compliance with the United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1244 and without prejudice to the status of Kosovo.

Open call for Participants: International Seminar “Digitising the Youth Ar(c)tivism”

Cooperation and Development Network Eastern Europe and Digital [X] Working Group are announcing a call for Participants for the international seminar “Digitising the Youth Ar(c)tivism”.

The seminar will take place between 19-24 November in Bosnia and Herzegovina (19 and 24 are travel dates to and from BiH).The project is the third and final phase of our annual work plan “Digital Technology For Democracy: Youth Turns Threat Into Opportunity” and is going to focus on finding innovative ways of communicating with one’s audience online through interactive creative means.

This seminar aims to:  

(1) Explore the concept of artivism as a tool for change and analyze various contextual examples for connecting it to digital activism;

(2) Look into the possibilities of modern digital technologies in communicating the message to the audience;

(3) Explore different creative tools for youth engagement that will later be included in the publication and multimedia library.

The programme will be based on the principles of non-formal education and intercultural learning. We strive for an active, inclusive environment for direct communication and sharing of knowledge. The sessions will be balanced between theoretical inputs, work in small groups, workshops, discussions, training and other interactive methods of non-formal learning.

Who should apply? We are looking for 30 young people aged 16-35, residing in one of the Council of Europe Member states, Belarus or Kosovo*. We encourage applications reflecting diversity in all forms; therefore we welcome applications from those who identify as women, LGBTQIA+, people of color or with a disability. Participants who have experience in artivism, digital activism and relevant knowledge or high motivation to learn about the topic are highly encouraged to apply.

Practicalities: Language: The main language of this activity will be English. But not being comfortable interacting in English should not prevent you from applying. CDN strives to create an inclusive atmosphere at the events, where participants are encouraged to express themselves and ask for clarifications or translations from peers that speak the same language.

Costs: The full cost of travel, visa, lodging (accommodation in multi-bed rooms, vegetarian and vegan food, and refreshments) and working materials during the event will be covered by the organizers. In exchange, we ask for a participation fee of 20 EUR for participants coming from non-EU countries and 50 EUR for participants coming from EU countries, Norway, Switzerland, and Iceland. Applicants for whom paying this fee is an obstacle for participation, should still apply and mention this in their application (not a selection criteria). CDN will try to find a solution together with the applicant after the selection is finalized. CDN will reimburse 90% of the travel costs for the participants from the non-EU countries and 80% of travel costs for the participants coming from the EU countries, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland within reasonable limits and within Europe, with the condition to combine the most economic and environmentally friendly way (lowest price + travel time + CO2 emissions).

DEADLINE for submitting online applications: 7th of October 2019 at Midnight CET. You will be informed about the results of the selection within two weeks after the deadline.

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This Project is supported by the European Youth Foundation of Council of Europe, Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament and the Green Forum (Sweden).

*All references to Kosovo, whether to the territory, institutions or population, in this text shall be understood in full compliance with the United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1244 and without prejudice to the status of Kosovo.

 Apply here! 

Open Call for Prep-team: Digitising the Youth Ar(c)tivism

Cooperation and Development Network Eastern Europe and Digital [X] Working Group are announcing a call for Prep-Team members for the international seminar “Digitising the Youth Ar(c)tivism”. The seminar will take place between 19-24 November in Bosnia and Herzegovina (19 and 24  are travel dates to and from BiH).

The project is the third and the final phase of our annual work plan “Digital Technology For Democracy: Youth Turns Threat Into Opportunity” and is going to focus on creative new ways of communicating with one’s audience online though interactive creative means.

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Open call for Participants: Summer School “Youth and the City: Young people for fair and Green cities” [Extended]

Cooperation and Development Network Eastern Europe and Alternative Urbanisation Working Group are announcing a call for Participants for the summer school “Youth and the City: Young people for fair and Green cities”. The event will take place from 5th to 9th of August in Prague ( 4 and 10th are travel dates to and from Prague.)

With this summer school we aim to conceptualise and promote the model of sustainable and democratic cities among active young people in the Central and Eastern Europe and provide them with tools for reclaiming their cities.

The aims and objectives of the project are:    

  • To create a space for youth to discuss the concept and role of Alternative Urbanisation in shaping the future of the cities;
  • To empower young people to use the city as a platform for doing local, Green and alternative politics;
  • To create a toolkit of positive practices and methods of influencing politics on a very local level.

Who should apply?

We are looking for 20 young people aged 16-35, residing in Central and Eastern Europe (Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Cyprus, Estonia, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Kosovo*, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, Ukraine).

We encourage applications reflecting diversity in all forms; therefore we welcome applications from those who identify as women, LGBTQIA+, POC, migration background, or with a different ability.

Participants who have activism experience in working on the rights for the city and/or urban planning and policy making and with relevant knowledge or high motivation to learn about the topic are highly encouraged to apply.

Practicalities: 

Language: The main language of this activity will be English. But not being comfortable interacting in English should not prevent you from applying, majority of us at the event will be non-native speakers and the group will be able to help out if there is some term you might not know!

Costs: The full cost of working materials, visa and lodging (accommodation in multi-bed rooms, vegetarian food, and refreshments) during the event will be covered by the organizers. In exchange, we ask for a participation fee of 20 EUR for participants coming from non-EU countries and 30 EUR for participants coming from EU countries.

Accommodation, food, working space, travel and visa costs for participants will be fully covered. For selection of travel means we encourage participants to combine the most economic and environmentally friendly way (lowest price + travel time + CO2 emissions).

DEADLINE for submitting online applications: 16th of June 2019 at Midnight CET. You will be informed about the results of the selection within two weeks after the deadline.


*All references to Kosovo, whether to the territory, institutions or population, in this text shall be understood in full compliance with the United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1244 and without prejudice to the status of Kosovo.

This project is organised by the Green European Foundation with the support of CDNEE and with the financial support of the European Parliament to the Green European Foundation.

 Apply here! 

Open call for Participants: International Seminar “Critical journalism in Digital Era: Youth’s access to non-biased information”

Cooperation and Development Network Eastern Europe and Digital [X] Working Group are announcing a call for Participants for the international seminar “Critical journalism in Digital Era: Youth’s access to non-biased information”. The seminar will take place from 2nd to 7th July in Georgia (1st and 8th are travel dates to and from Georgia.)

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Youth and the City – Young people for fair and Green cities (Summer School)

Project Background

Alternative Urbanisation Working Group (AU WG) of CDN gathers young people interested in exploring, discussing and learning about alternatives to current urban practices in the Central and Eastern Europe. It was established in 2013 after an event on democratic participation of young people in their cities.

Since then, the WG has organised online movie discussions and calls for articles. In 2016, the WG conducted the study session “Reclaim the city” on topic of youth participation in creating inclusive and sustainable cities, in European Youth Center in Budapest. In 2018, WG successfully implemented one year long project “Urban Steps for Resilient Future”, consisting of an international training of trainers, four regional trainings, and 11 local actions implemented by young activists in 10 different countries. 
Today, majority of the world’s population lives in urban areas and the number is only expected to increase in future.

With this project we want to empower youth to discuss and cooperate in the development of the alternatives to current manners of urbanisation in Central and Eastern European cities. We see the current urbanisation in our cities characterised by a low amount of governmental regulations, lack of public, especially young people’s, opinion consideration in planning and shaping the cities, lack of tools for political participation for youth or will from the political stakeholders to foster it.

These are followed by socially and environmentally unsustainable practices – gentrification, suburbanisation, exclusion, injustice, pollution and lack of space for the young people to socialise. We would like to adress these issues, as we consider cities the best platform for local, community-lead change to take place. We believe that this project will contribute to defining and popularising the AlterUrb concept as a very practical and recognized element of progressive youth politics as it is rooted in principles of inclusion, participation, social and environmental justice and empowers the youth to take action on community level. 

Alternative Urbanisation is based on values of human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality and respect for human rights. We are convinced that we need more pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality.

Aims and objectives

Considering the above mentioned, with this summer school we aim to conceptualise and promote the model of sustainable and democratic cities among active young people in the Central and Eastern Europe and provide them with tools for reclaiming their cities.
The objectives of the project are:

  1. To create a space for youth to discuss the concept and role of Alternative Urbanisation in shaping the future of the cities
  2. To empower young people to use the city as a platform for doing local, Green and alternative politics;
  3. To create a toolkit of positive practices and methods of influencing politics on a very local level.

Project Summary

Date: 5-9 August 2019

Duration: 5 working days

Working language: English

Number of participants: 25

The program will be based on the principles of non-formal education and intercultural learning. We strive for active, inclusive and direct communication, as well as transfer and sharing of knowledge. Sessions will be balanced between theoretical inputs, training, workshops, discussions, reflection, planning, brainstorming and other interactive methods of learning.

This project is organised by the Green European Foundation with the support of CDNEE and with the financial support of the European Parliament to the Green European Foundation.

Open call for Prep-Team: International Seminar “Critical journalism in Digital Era”

Cooperation and Development Network Eastern Europe and Digital [X] Working Group are announcing a call for Prep-Team members for the international seminar “Critical journalism in Digital Era: Youth’s access to non-biased information”. The seminar will take place from 2nd to 7th July in Georgia (1st and 8th are travel dates to and from Georgia.)
The project is a part of our annual work plan “Digital Technology For Democracy: Youth Turns Threat Into Opportunity” and is going to

 (1) Identify and explore the connection between digital rights and online journalism by raising the participants’ knowledge and practical skills on fake news phenomenon and hoax detection;
 (2) Equip participants with open source tools of critical digital media literacy for proactively combatting fabricated material online;
 (3)Equip participants with tools and methods to different steps of proactive online journalism; 


We are looking for young people who are passionate exploring the connection between digital rights and online journalism, and the values of the Green movement. Are you motivated to turn online journalism into a more proactive one?
Then this is the right activity for you!
DEADLINE for submitting online applicationsis:  10th April at midnight (CET)

The main responsibilities of the prep-team are:

  1. Active participation in the regular on-line meetings prior the event;
  2. Full participation in one in-person preparatory meeting in May 2019 (2 full working days) in Tbilisi, Georgia;
  3. Preparation of a call and selection of participants, preparation of participants for the event and providing them with all the necessary information regarding the program;
  4. Preparation and implementation of the seminar programme; Invitation and communication with speakers, experts, trainers and partners in accordance with the project aims;
  5. Help with the promotion of the event and ensuring media visibility;
  6. Taking care of practicalities and for well-being of the participants;
  7. Full participation during the entire event, 2-7th July 2019 ; and prep team meeting before (30th June- 1st July) and after (8th July);
  8. Help with the reporting of the seminar (July-August)

Being a prep-team member at CDN event would offer you:

  1. Working in a lively international environment;
  2. Experience in managing youth projects – preparation, implementation and reporting;
  3. Getting familiar with Green values and CDN work;
  4. Getting to know local initiatives on online journalism and their work;
  5. A possibility to develop your leadership skills and group work;
  6. A lot of work and a lot of fun!

Prep-team members should:

  1. Speak English (you should be able to clearly express yourself both orally and in writing).
  2. Be willing to take on a challenge;
  3. Be responsible about fulfilling their tasks and help the rest of the group;
  4. Have good organisational skills;
  5. Be a good team player;
  6. Be committed to the aims of the project;
  7. Be familiar with non-formal education methods.

Practicalities:

Accommodation, food, working space, travel and visa costs for preparatory team will be fully covered. For selection of travel means the condition is to combine the most economic and environmentally friendly way (lowest price + travel time + CO2 emissions). 

More information about the work plan: Project page 

 Apply here!

 *All references to Kosovo, whether to the territory, institutions or population, in this text shall be understood in full compliance with the United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1244 and without prejudice to the status of Kosovo.

Call for Participants: Internet As We Want It [Extended]

The following “Call for Participants: Internet As We Want It” is extended till 18 April, Thursday midnight CET for participants coming from Ukraine and Central Europe.

Cooperation and Development Network Eastern Europe and Digital [X] Working Group are announcing a call for participants for the international seminar “Internet as we know it vs Internet as youth wants it” The seminar will take place from 20th to 26th May in Kyiv, Ukraine. (20th and 26th are travel dates to and from Kyiv.)

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General Assembly 2019 – report

Between 7-10 March, Cooperation and Development Network Eastern Europe held its 10th General Assembly in Istanbul, Turkey. The General Assembly was hosted by our member organisation, Young Greens of Turkey/Genc Yesiller, who did amazing work preparing perfect conditions for meetings and work as well as welcoming CDN’s delegates and guests.

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