If you ask Czech eighth graders about human rights most of them will be able to reel off a few - those that concern them the most. What the organizers of the project aimed for was to give them a broader picture - to show them how human rights were violated in the past and give them a deeper understanding of what is happening in the world today. Jarmila Knight is head of the project in the Czech Republic.
The one-day outing to Terezin is a very different experience from studying history books or human rights documents. The students are divided into groups and each is told to chose a human right and write down in what way it was abused in the ghetto. The abuse of various human rights is then discussed in connection with the present day, in connection with dictatorships and extremist movements, even in connection with school bullying. Radka Zuzankova is an eighth grade teacher who accompanied her class on the outing:
Over the past year 600 students have taken part in this pilot project - most of them from the Czech Republic but also from neighbouring Germany and Slovakia. Its results are so encouraging that other schools will be invited to take part next year. For a country which has experienced both the Nazi and Communist regimes - the lessons of the past are invaluable.Listen to the report:
In France, Housing has become the hot topic. Homeless people and their supporters have set up hundreds of red tents in the centre of Paris, a visual and provocative way, of putting the plight of the homeless, into the spotlight. And it’s working……Presidential hopefuls can no longer ignore it, and are being forced to commit themselves. The problem is that campaign pledges on housing, are rarely followed through. Radio France International’s Sarah Elzas, reports on the issue that keeps making the headlines, but never seems to get resolved.
Although the Sicilian Mafia have stopped the high-profile murders and bloody gang warfare of the 1990s, the organisation still controls large parts of the southern Italian island. But an EU-funded project aims to break the culture, of depending on the mafia for work, by providing legal jobs in the mafia heartlands, south of Palermo. And they are fighting the bosses with their own weapons - by using land confiscated from imprisoned mafia gangsters. Deutsche Welle’s Kate Hairsine reports from Sicily.
Workers from Poland who have move to Western Europe for work often get bad press, particularly in the British Tabloid media. For a change we head to Sweden where apparently Poles have less difficulty integrating. Last year, Poles were among the largest groups of immigrants in Malmö, Sweden's third largest and most ethnically diverse city, located at the very south of the county. The presence of polls in Malmö is not new, but Polish immigration has picked up significantly, since Sweden opened its doors to workers from the countries which joined the EU in 2004.
The Swedish temperance movement has been increasingly concerned, with Western liquor companies and their clever PR advertisements, aiming at new markets in developing countries -- the growing middle class and especially women. In Sweden a new campaign called "Freedom Spirits" aims at reaching both Swedes and consumers abroad, about the dangers of alcohol consumption. ragic observations in many developing countries have noted those armies of poverty-stricken men in the sprawling city slums and in the countryside - spending all of their meagre wages on the local alcoholic brew - instead of on food for the family, badly-needed medicine or school books. But a more recent spotlight has focused on those Western-influenced ad campaigns on highway billboards and in magazines in Africa, Asia and Latin America - designed to capture new consumers with luxury scenes of the rising middle class enjoying expensive, imported spirits -- ads often for the first time including women. As a counter measure, the Swedish temperance movement has been using sophisticated-looking leaflets, brochures and even exhibitions offering free drinks from glamorous bottles of a brand called "Freedom Spirits" - containing no alcohol at all.
Romania and Bulgaria joined the European Union on the first of January, and on new year’s day, a former member of the eastern block joined the Euro zone. Euro notes and coins are now being used in thirteen countries. We’d like you to give us the name of the new member of the Euro zone.
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