During the whole month of April, we toured through Chile and held several workshops in schools regarding the topic of citizen participation. Actually, the Chilean constitution offers several mechanisms to its citizens to participate on municipal level. Unfortunately, the level of awareness is extremely low. Therefore, we developed a tailor-made simulation game that reflects a typical Chilean municipality, in which the participants have to organize a plebiscite.
The method of simulation gaming was new to almost all our participants. Although it was tough for some of them to adopt to the save space of the simulation game and to use their very own creativity (something that is not very wide spread in Chilean curriculum), the vast majority was extremely grateful for having the opportunity to step into the roles of local decision-makers and to try out themselves. Moreover, they have learned a lot about citizen participation and we are quite sure that some of them will use the newly gained knowledge soon.
Furthermore, we did a Training-of-Trainers in order to pass on the simulation game to local trainers of non-formal education. That way our simulation game will teach many more pupils the existing mechanisms of citizen participation and stimulate further fruitful discussions on how people can get involved in decision-making processes.
Many thanks to the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation for inviting us and bringing us to the edge of the world. Muchisimas Gracias – se pasaron!