WELCOME arose from identification of the dangers of xenophobia, intolerance and discrimination arising in Europe, and brings together 8 countries and 11 partners committed to support migrant and refugee integration, community development and promoting evidence–based policy making in the area of migration. The aim of WELCOME is to deconstruct the process of migrants’ stigmatization, help communities involved overcome stereotypes and develop counter narratives for more accurate perceptions of migrants and refugees stemming in participating countries, especially in the UK, Central Europe and countries along the Balkan-route.
Through project activities, in the “How We View Each Other” research phase, WELCOME assessed how hate speech and propaganda arise on fertile ground of economic and security fears in selected communities, and how they contribute to radicalized behaviors both from the indigenous communities and new arrivals. Then, working with representatives of the most affected communities (including third-country nationals legally residing in the EU) during the “Otherness Dialogue” workshop, we adapted the workshop content and gave them skills to record educational videos and conduct “You and I – We Are Not So Different” workshops, and encourage dissemination of learning through social action.
Finally, the final event of the project under the title NO HATE Film Festival, strengthened the foundations for continued intercultural dialogue and increased mutual understanding through the screening of documentary films focused on conflicts, exhibitions that showcase migration and the advantages that migration can bring, creative and art workshops that fostered cross-cultural exchange, round-table discussions on the current sociopolitical situation of Europe, the dance performance Mirror that deals with the topic of identity and the projection of the WELCOME short films produced by the project consortium.
The legacy of WELCOME has become a European transnational network of young activists, emerging leaders in their organizations, communities, municipalities, with ambitions to actively combat stigmatization of “immigrants” and build counter narratives to hate speech. The Project provides tools such as Educational Videos and a Guidebook to foster intercultural dialogue, mutual understanding and civic participation of third-country nationals, to continue beyond the life of the project, and to connect to a wider European community.
General objectives of the Programme targeted by your project:
To contribute to citizens’ understanding of the Union, its history and diversity. To foster European citizenship and to improve conditions for civic and democratic participation at Union level.
Specific aims of the Programme targeted by your project:
Raise awareness of remembrance, common history and values and the Union’s aim that is to promote peace, its values and the well-being of its peoples by stimulating debate, reflection and development of networks Encourage democratic and civic participation of citizens at Union level, by developing citizens’ understanding of the Union policy making-process and promoting opportunities for societal and intercultural engagement and volunteering at Union level.