This year we designed a new version of CATS with new activities like the Learning Spaces, the Let’s Explore Workshops and the 90 Day Challenge but we also kept some of the most successful activities from past editions like the Human Library, the Cultural Night or the CATS Marketplace. Here is an overview of the most appreciated activities this year.
During the Human Library, we’ve heard very inspiring and moving stories about inclusion: fighting discrimination, everyday people making a change, citizenship and decision making, school to empower changes and advocacy in communities. For instance, Alex and Olivia, two young girls from Liverpool who came with the NGOs “Children of Prisoners and Person Shaped Support” shared their experience of having parents in prison and impressed the readers with their strength, their maturity and their joy. Being the witnesses of their empowerment throughout the week confirm us the importance of CATS as a platform for children to express themselves, gain confidence, self-esteem and acceptance.
The new 2 hours workshops “Let’s Explore” was a funny way to explore diversity and inclusion through arts, games, meditation, dance, storytelling, theatre and dialogue. Many participants expressed their enthusiasm about the workshops and want to bring it back next year.
Throughout the week, participants learned, experienced and explored different types of exclusion and inclusion in the Learning Spaces and gathered the last day in the Hub to build their “inclusive society”.
The Call for action – 90 day Challenge aimed to inspire and encourage participants to take actions forward after CATS. Participants thought about an initiative to start when they got back home. At the end, we collect 18 projects at the end. For instance, the Kragulj family from Bosnia and Herzegovina has decided to pick up (and then throw away) a bag of litter every day for 90 days. They called their challenge “Operation Clean Up Our City”.
MEP, co-founder of the European Parliament cross-party and cross-committee intergroup on Children’s Rights, inspired everyone during the Call for Action and encouraged the assembly to take action for the 90 Day Challenge and make a difference.
Kindercorrespondant, showed the importance to listen to children and giving them a voice.
Chair of Child to Child, gave us an expert eye on children’s rights and how to break down the barriers of exclusion.
Director of Eastern Africa Practical Action, shared her story and how child participation has become the cause she is fighting for.
winner of the International Children’s Peace Prize 2016, 17 years old, urged children and adults to work together to create a future that is just and sustainable and where children’s rights will be recognized and respected.