The Platform of Ambassadors of European Democratic Culture project is a joint project of the Academia Istropolitana Nova and the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights in Slovakia. The Helsinki Committee is responsible for one of the four main activities of the project, while its experts are actively involved in the other activities as well.
The aim of the project is to prepare young people, especially first-time voters, for a life in a democratic and civil society. The goal is to raise awareness and their motivation to vote and participate in public life in order to lead them to influencing our society in a positive way. One of the main activities of the project is to introduce firs-time voters to their rights and duties as citizens.
The ambition is to address and connect 3000 students and teachers across Slovakia. This project is creating a platform of ambassadors who represent European democratic culture – active, educated and informed people who will be interested in supporting democracy and a European outlook for the Slovak Republic.
One of the valuable aspects of the project is that it addresses students and teachers from all types of schools. It does not leave out any Slovak region and tries to be known in so called white zones, where formal and informal civic education is poorly developed. The project holds a complex stance on civic education and participation. However, it does provide crucial information, knowledge and know-how in systematic connections and contexts.
Aims of the project will be fulfilled thanks to the following activities:
- Scientific tea room – lectures led by experts from the academic field and public
- Vedecké čajovne – lectures led by experts from the academic community and public law practice, supplemented by workshops aimed specifically at students and especially at teachers.
- State meetings of the platforms – discussing topics such as democracy, human rights and European values which serve to connect and exchange experiences and information between members of these platforms
- Creating an online space – webpage for the project which will gather informational and educational material and also offer a space for discussion and exchange of opinions.
- Simulated European election project – done on a chosen sample of schools with the aim to motivate students into a deeper analysis and contemplation about the European context of voting, because instead of Slovak parties, they will be voting for European parties.
- Sociological research which will examine deeper motivations and causes of young people’s opinions in regard to moral questions. Collected data will be used for development of methodological tools, which could help guide young people to adopting values of European and democratic culture.
The project is co-financed by the European Social Fund within the Operational Program Effective Public Administration under the Ministry of Interior of the Slovak Republic. The calls were intended for non-governmental organizations to support civic participation and awareness. The contribution from the entire grant for the Helsinki Committee amounts to 100 000 euros for the period from September 1, 2018 to August 31, 2020.
You can find more information about the project on the website, Academia Istropolitana Nova.