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Ugandan and German Cultures Successfully Bridged!

29. October 2018


Updates of the first block of the Bridging Cultures Project 

In the past two months we have successfully carried out the first block of our Bridging Cultures project for the 8th time. This time, we visited five classes of four high schools in Berlin to carry out a 2-day workshop on current issues happening on the African continent, all in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. Education is essential to sustainable development, which can only be reached if students are exposed to new cultures and ideas, to have the necessary equipment to take action as an individual. Our trainer, Faruku Kibaba from Uganda, who is recently occupied in international trainings on the Global Sustainable Development Goals, was able to give a critical insight on three goals in depths: Goal #5 Gender Equality, Goal #13 Climate Action and Goal #16 Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions. Besides learning about some cultural aspects, such as food music, clothing, transportation and religious traditions in our trainer’s home country, Uganda, students were also able to reflect on controversial issues related to the Global Goals that are happening in this country: corruption, female genital mutilation and the critical effects of global warming in the Rwenzori Mountains. 


“Assuming you are a voted Member of Parliament in Uganda, what reforms would you suggest eliminating corruption in the country?” - was one of the questions that resulted in heated discussions to tackle a problem that sometimes seems to be impossible to tackle. "The most important is that everyone needs to be awake and blow their whistle against corruption, to put an end to it" - pointed out Faruku Kibaba during the discussions.

Students showed an immense interest in these issues. They enjoyed the diverse group activities, experimental learning methods and presentations by the trainer, and as a result, they have come up with very diverse, creative solutions and suggestions to address these problems both on the individual and international level.

In the following, we would like to give you a glimpse of solutions that the students have come up with during the presentation of their individual innovative methods:

Having mentioned corruption, a group of students at Phorms High School presented a rather popular idea to raise awareness: they proposed to dedicate a specific day worldwide where people wearing a specific colour would contribute to SDG #16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions. To them this would be popularized by coming up with social media campaigns to have as many people as possible to act. On this day, most of the outstanding injustices done to people or institutions will be highlighted with an aim of sending a signal to governments to take charge of building strong institutions and eliminate corrupt means.

Two students of Melanchton High School have come up with a creative rap song about climate change while imitating to drive around in a huge gas consuming vehicle, which was left behind by the end of their song. Such methods are very popular means nowadays to advertise important problems: through social media, videos, songs, poems reach more people easily. Artistic solutions were popular in Paulsen High School as well: besides yet another rap song, another, rather big group of students united to act out a silent, non-verbal play together on how to deal with emission and waste disposal.

Another group in Melanchton presented about creating a hybrid plant that would grow very fast, absorbing more carbon-dioxide, producing more oxygen while consuming less water, thus being able to accommodate to multiple kinds of climate and environment.

Presentations on gender equality seemed to be the most sensitive ones. Besides awareness raising posters, several groups of students juxtaposed personal stories of women and girls from different parts of the world in a form of testimonials and role-plays, that could be perfectly used during online campaigns.

These innovative ideas are the ones that move the final aim of the Sustainable Development Goals forward, to be achieved by 2030.

We received a lot of positive feedback both from students and teachers that equipped us with loads of positive energy for our return in January with the second block of the project, when we are going to focus on India!

If you would be interested in having a Bridging Culture workshop, please contact us
here.

To get more inspiration, please watch this
video of our project or check out the pictures in our gallery.




The project was funded by the Evangelical Church Development Service with the kind support of Senatsverwaltung für Wirtschaft, Energie und Betriebe - Landesstelle für Entwicklungszusammenarbeit


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