Institution: Miteinander – Network for Democracy and Open-Mindedness in Saxony-Anhalt e.V.
Duration / funding: model project from April 2011 to April 2014 funded by the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citzens, Women and Youth (BMFSJ) as part of the programme “Promoting Tolerance – Strengthening Competence”, by the state Saxony-Anhalt as well as additional third-party fundinghomepage
Gender-specific: observing, testing and exploring ideas of gender roles in personal development and right-wing extremism
Miteinander e.V. is a non-profit NGO which has worked on such topics as right-wing extremism, group-focussed enmity, promoting democracy and human rights education since 1999. They engage in counselling, research/analysis and educational work.
An explicit link between gender socialisation and entry processes into right-wing scenes was noted in the practical educational work. Thus, the 3 year model project “Rollenwechsel” began with the following questions: Which role do gender aspects play in the manifestation of right-wing extremism and developing right-wing extremist views and which gender role models could then promote/prevent entry? How can prevention work function here? How can the gender-aspect be addressed in educational work? Do approaches already exist which are suitable for this kind of educational work and, if so, how can they be applied? Are there protective factors which counter turning towards right-wing ideology?
First, these questions were scientifically explored and guidelines and concepts for working with right-wing extremist oriented youth in structurally weak regions were developed. Next, the concepts were tested and developed further with long-term local partner organisations in the model regions. Practical work with the adolescents was also combined with elements of cultural, music and theatre education.
In addition to working with right-wing extremist oriented youth, historical learning and biography work is also used in the prevention work. These approaches enable such topics as identity, life-worlds, value, visions of the future and openness to the world to be discussed on equal terms; the theatre education methods particularly allow the possibility to explore one’s own (gender) identity and physicality. The work is done on a voluntary basis and is co-educational.
Gender-reflective work means giving male and female adolescents the necessary freedom and protective space as well as the impetus to recognise and appreciate, and also test and explore, the diverse way in which gender roles can be lived out in society. The gender focus of the project also similarly incorporates the educator’s attitude on the subject.
The target group is made up of child and youth services at schools between school and extracurricular education, adolescent absentees as well as juvenile offenders (for resocialisation and juvenile criminal law services).
Proven approaches are then passed on to practitioners who are professionally supervised for implementing and applying the methods.