On 22th of February, CRISP together with ‘Kreisau Initiative’ launched the continuation of the first part of 'Practice Peace!’ . With almost the same participants from Israel, Palestine, Germany and Poland, the sessions this time took place in Koepenik on the outskirts of Berlin. The seminar combined the methods of simulation gaming and Betzavta in order to give room to the participants to think and discuss about democratically behavior and discrimination in their societies. Betzavta is a Hebrew word and means ‘together’. It has become a synonym for an innovative conflict-based educational concept whose learning process concentrates on creating conflicts and dilemmas and working through them with the aim of achieving hostility-free democratic communication between citizens. The Betzavta sessions included activities that elaborated on ‘Democratic decision-making’, ‘Democratic principles’, ‘The Minority-Majority Relations’ and ‘The Fundamental Rights’. The outcome of the activities made the participants think how they act in real life situations and to discuss about the source of disturbances of the democratic principles in societies. In the second part of the Seminar the participants stepped into the roles of politicians and activists of the fictional town of the simulation game of Anopolis . Here they were facing different problems such as bad economical situation, unemployment, tension between the groups and a flow of refugees. The participants were assigned to come to an agreement on the development of three free construction sides in the town. The list of proposal pursued different objectives divided in three categories: commerce, culture & education and social. The participants had lively discussion in order to fulfill their interests with the construction projects. The Simulation Game though created a deeper understanding of the difficulties in applying democratic principles in situations with strongly diverging interests. On the base of these findings, the participants then tried to find strategies to overcome these difficulties on a personal level, to have an impact on their societies in the end. It was a great pleasure for CRISP to work with these young and creative participants. We hope that this type of projects will continue to develop in future and will target more and more groups of young and democratic minds. We would also like to thank our partner organization “Kreisau Initiative” for the fruitful cooperation.
High-school Students from Germany, Israel, Palestinian Authority and Poland.
The students gained background knowledge about the construction and use of social, religious and political discrimination and their impact on people's life. Furthermore they learned about concrete and practical ways how to deal with them.