Human Rights – Who cares?

This project brought together 14 young people from Croatia and Germany for two weeks in September 2010. Together, we went on a ‘timejourney’ through Europe to find out more about Human Rights.

The main objective of our project was: to talk. To talk with people in Europe about Human Rights. We wanted to find out more about the Human Rights situation in Europe today as well as about the Human Rights situation during and after World War 2. First, in a four day kick off seminar in International House Sonnenberg, we talked to each other – about our prior knowledge, our questions, our backgrounds. Then we started our journey. In two groups we went to different European cities.

We really can say: We talked a lot. We asked people about their opinions on Human Rights in trains, in shops, on the streets, on bus stations, at historical sites… Especially intensive talks we had with our hosts during the journey. Members of the peace organization SERVAS opened their doors for us and gave us the opportunity to be part of their life for short periods. We also talked to experts about the topic of Human Rights -to different NGOs, research institutes, as well as to contemporary witnesses.

When we reached Zagreb, we kept on talking: We were curious to hear the travel stories of the other group, we wanted to know more about Zagreb and Human Rights. And finally, at the end of the project, we talked to approx 60 students at the I.tehnicka škola “TESLA” about our experiences.

For us, the project wasn’t over when we left Zagreb. In our schools, with our families and friends, we kept on talking about our experiences during the journey and the topic of Human Rights. In February 2011, some of us got the chance to meet again – this time in Berlin. After some months – what were the questions that we kept thinking about? What were the thoughts that we had? Well, here there are:

  • We wonder: How can there be so much information about Human Rights, so specialized institutions and many cities of Europe – but when you ask people on the street so many hardly know much about Human Rights or they don’t seem to care?
  • We discuss a lot about: What does actually keep people from ‘having’ their Human Rights – which mechanisms exclude them from the chance to use their Human Rights?
  • Talking to contemporary witnesses, we were impressed to see the changes that are possible within one person’s life time. You can be a victim of Human Rights violations, a violator of Human Rights and a fighter for Human Rights education in one life time.
  • Travelling through Europe and getting to know more about history, we were impressed by suddenly knowig what happened at certain places that seem so normal and every day like today.
  • We wonder: Many people seem know that there are Human Rights violations. Why do some act and others don’t?

For a change, we decided not to only talk about these points but to try to produce images that transport our thoughts and questions.

We hope, our postcards will make you stop for a moment and think about Human Rights. We also hope you will enjoy reading some more information about our project on this website. We are looking forward to your comments in our guest book!

So, when we ask ‘Human Rights – Who Cares?’ We answer: ‘We care’. And we hope so do you.