Recommendation and Statement “Building bridges” campaign

Recommendation “Building bridges” campaign, as amended and approved by 75th ICM, Sri Lanka, 13 dec 2015

Introductory Statement

“Humanity has always moved all around the world since its early ages. People travel for several reasons, such as study, work, holidays. But they are often also forced to move to flee persecutions, wars, economic crisis and natural disasters. Most of them travel to escape the violence, but also to improve the living conditions and fulfill the personal life plan, and SCI recognizes this right to everybody who dream about a different life path.

SCI believes that each human being has to be the core of governmental policies before any economical or political evaluation. According to that, SCI promotes freedom of movement and right to citizenship at global level. Too many current approaches, on a communication or legislative level, divide migrant people between legal and illegal, according to the reasons bringing them to leave their birthplace, referring to the means they use to travel or to treatment they get at their arrival in the hosting country.

In order to overthrow this narrative, for more than 90 years the international network of SCI promotes a culture of peace by organizing international volunteering projects aimed at creating paths of social inclusion and social justice, in a constant effort to overcome cultural barriers and divisions among people and, above all, to work on the socio-political dynamics that determine them.”

During the Exchange Platform Meeting which took place in Lozen (Bulgaria), October 2015, all the participants agreed to make a proposal for this at the International Committee Meeting, December 2015.

The proposal aims to react in the most pragmatic, realistic and powerful modality SCI international network has, our workcamp projects, to the actual worldwide migration and refugee issues, including all their harmful consequences inside our societies (such as the rise of racism, xenophobia, intolerance and extreme right wing groups etc.). 

The recommendation is to encourage all SCI members and willing partners organisations  in  implementing   an   additional thematic study part inside  our workcamps in 2016.

This study part could have many different shapes during the workcamps: it can be a workshop, an evening debate, a play-role game, a documentary projection, an expert guest meeting the volunteers, an international evening etc. For this mean, the group “Building bridges” will provide the network with a tool-kit to support the implementation of this specific  study part inside our workcamp projects and also in our leader trainings.

At the EPM final plenary 14 SCI branches and partner organisations supported this proposal and committed to implement this additional study part inside their 2016 workcamps projects. Here are the following organisation: KVT Finland / OWA Poland / SCI Belgium / SCI Catalunya / SCI Hellas / SCI Italia / SCI Madrid / SCI Switzerland / SVIT Ukraine / SCI USA / VCV Serbia / Tamjdem Czech Republic / GSM Turkey / Genctur Turkey.

Moreover, the proposal made in the EPM clearly asked SCI network, through the ICM, to make a statement on the topic in order to strengthen the campaign effectiveness. The “Building Bridges” group will prepare and draft such statement, sharing it during an ICM night session where the aim and implementation of the campaign will be discussed. The statement and recommendation will be presented and hopefully supported by the ICM plenary.

The spirit behind this campaign is to be as much as possible simple in its implementation, where all organisations would have the freedom to communicate and implement it in the way they believe it's better.

We also would like to invite the branches and willing partner organization to use this tools and methods not only in workcamps, but also on other occasions where you think its appropriate (like training's, local activities and internal meetings).

Plan of Action after approval

  • The group “Building Bridges” will share material and tool-kit with SCI network, to support the implementation of the Study Part inside 2016 SCI workcamps – Calendar: January 2016

  • BEES WG will invite SCI members to implement the campaign inside their workcamp projects and their camp leader trainings 2016 – Calendar: February/March 2016

  • SCI branches supporting this Recommendation and Partner Organisation joining the campaign attempt to train their camp leaders and facilitators with tools and materials to implement the campaign and the study part inside their all (if not most of) their workcamps project in 2016 - Calendar: Spring 2016

  • The campaign will be evaluated during EPM 2016 by the prep-team and participants, and a follow-up will eventually be planned and considered– Calendar: Summer/Autumn 2016