How can a truly autonomous, equal and recognisable activism and participation be practised in this new context? How to widen the spaces of citizenship and participation to trigger concrete processes of social change? And how to relate with the liquid and elusive world of politics and institutions, trying to reorient their choices?
The Forum, organised within the framework of the Salone dell’Editoria Sociale 2022, proposes a collective reflection on these issues with the intention of making a contribution to the relaunch of the battles for the rights of all, for social justice, against all forms of discrimination and racism.
During the event, the results of the BABI project were presented, and in particular the research conducted at the national level, thanks to interviews with organisations, associations and groups of people of foreign origin, who fight every day for equality and rights. Some of these experiences were re-proposed and recounted during the meeting, giving rise to a participatory discussion on how complicated it is to promote and really practise participation in the country’s political decisions.
The event was organized inside ‘Polifa Antiracista’, a meeting, amongst antiracist organizations of Catalonia and people engaged in the movement, designed to discuss relevant issues around the anti-racist fight; debate them and generate a joint reflection for collective action.
The event was an open meeting space to promote knowledge between organizations and activists, encourage the participation of people who want to join the fight, learn about and unify the anti-racist discourse linked to associative life and social movements in the territory.
Cheikh Drametine, president of SOS Racisme, open up the event contextualizing the encounter in the framework of BABI project to generate knowledge about anti-racist activism in Europe and promote the participation of civil society organizations, associations and grassroots movements in the definition and implementation of social inclusion policies. Different outcomes of the project were presented with special emphasis made on the work done during the research on ‘Social priorities, participation, and advocacy practices’ and the study of different models of activist mobilization of Catalan and Spanish anti-racist entities.
The meeting featured the presence of various thematic experts that guided the debate. The public debate raised some contested issues and shed some light on new approaches for collective action.
SOS Malta and many others have been working in the field of advocacy for a long time, collaborating or leading projects, hoping to leave a better world. However, the problems we all face on a daily basis are many and often leave us feeling helpless and overwhelmed. The BABI’s event it’s been a good chance to take a moment to understand what the challenges are and how we can better address them together.
The event, that took place on Thursday 20th october, was intended to give space to representatives of different entities working in the field of advocacy and of the general public a chance to exchange experiences, as well as presenting the BABI project results, with a particular focus and interest for the toolkit and the ways it could be utilized.
This was then followed by an open discussion about the way advocacy is carried out by both individuals, activists and different entities working in the sector. Interesting aspects that emerged here include the need to coordinate and share information and resources in order to achieve better results and the public’s willingness to be involved in certain aspects, but also the difficulty of doing so and of forging a link with those working in the sector.
The Greek national event “Advocacy. Experience from Thessaloniki, challenges and successes” in the framework of the BABI project opened with the presentation of the Toolkit “Better Advocacy, Better Inclusion”, the last of the outputs produced, and continued with the participation of a number of organisations engaged in the promotion and respect of rights.
From the advocacy campaign on respect for diversity promoted by the Select Respect network, to the experience of NAOMI, the ecumenical workshop offering fair work to refugees, to the story of the Oikopolis social space, which deals with the right to housing with its Home for all project, the event succeeded in creating a space for discussion and constructive confrontation on the theme of participation.