Non-Governmental Organisations

WINTER SESSION

CONFERENCE OF INGOs

Strasbourg, 2 April 2014

Meeting on “Living Together:
how to embrace the diversity advantage”

Report of the meeting
on Monday 27 January 2014

Co-Chairs: Sabine Rohmann, Chair of the Committee on Education and Culture and Karl Donert, in charge of the Working Group on “Living together”

    After a short introduction, the participants worked in groups to assemble fields of action:

    GROUP I

    Defined five aspects of an approach to the subject area of diversity and management:

    1. women (family – cookery)

    2. teacher – action of training for diversity, textbook

    3. young people (lower and upper secondary pupils)

    4. importance of fighting discrimination (homosexuals)

    5. awareness-raising about actions to enable persons with disabilities to live with what makes them different

    GROUP II

    Defined two blocs: a) NGOs and b) in the Conference

      1. Language courses – multilingualism

      2. Inquiry into convictions

      3. Diversity in organisations

      4. Work in the family context – the first for diversity

      5. Tools to address diversity

    GROUP III

      1. Religious factor – knowing each other

      2. Culture of peace through different cultures

      3. Sharing

      4. Family – at the level of the very young

      5. Right for the elderly

      6. Work with vulnerable groups

      7. Europe needs explaining (above all to young people)

      8. Speaking and working together (co-operation)

    Debate

    After the presentation of the groups’ findings, a debate was held on the following aspects:

      a) What should be done with all these activities?

      b) What is the task of the Conference of INGOs?

      c) The Council of Europe should support and promote the work of INGOs.

      d) Definite concepts should be devised.

      e) The activity of the working group “Living together” of the Committee on “Education and Culture” should be organised over the three years ahead; learning the past in order to build the future and identify the future prospects.

    Irena Guidikova, DGII, participated in the meeting and presented DGII’s policy on living together, including at the level of the World Forum for Democracy for which she is responsible.

    Sabine Rohmann