Rainbow Resources is a publication with information and educational resources (‘session plans’) on gender and sexuality rights education with children.
The first part of the book contains information and food for thought on children’s development, sexual rights, identity, bullying and diverse families. Educators will also find tips on how to work with children on these topics and some general information on facilitation. The second part includes many educational activities on gender and sexuality that can be run with different children’s groups.
The target group are mainly educators from the non-formal education sector, they included group leaders and trainers. Users of the publication are mainly members of IFM-SEI, but it has been disseminated very widely among youth workers, teachers and LGBTQI activists.
While there are many educational resources on gender, and sexual identity and rights for teenagers, there have never been any materials aimed at working with younger children. It was felt that it was very important to tackle this topic with children under 12. The reasoning for this is that gender and sexual identities are developed at a young age, and discriminatory views are already formed by that age.
The aims of the publication...
- To extend the reach of Compasito and provide educators with educational activities and food for thought on gender and sexuality rights education with children
The publication was initially developed in 2011 by a group of 7 non-formal education trainers of IFM-SEI. They developed the ideas for the activities during workshops given at the annual Queer Easter seminar in the Kurt-Löwenstein Education Centre in Werftpfuhl, Germany. They then tried them out in different children’s groups, for example at the international summer camp ‘Cocamp’ in the UK. Based on the children’s feedback, the activities were improved where necessary and the best then included in the publication.
In the following years a lot of positive feedback and many ideas for improvements and new activities were received. These have been from private individuals and from participants of a study session in the European Youth Centre that introduced Rainbow Resources to a number of organisations - including the Youth Department of the Council of Europe. Therefore, in 2014 a group of educators systematically collected the feedback and again held workshops at Queer Easter to work on new ideas and improvements.
The second edition was translated into several languages: French, German, Spanish, Finnish, Latvian and Lithuanian.
Innovation and Impact
This is the only publication of non-formal education activities on gender and sexuality rights especially for children. It has been developed by young educators and tested by children from around the world. There are some resources on sexual health and on gender equality for children, but none that tackles homophobia, gender and sexual identities and different forms of families heads-on.Rainbow Resources supports educators to work on a topic with children that is often difficult to tackle, and also gives good advice on how to tackle obstacles that are often met when wanting to talk about sexuality and gender with children. It gives confidence to LGBTQI educators and activists who have reported that they feel supported in their work because of the publication. Another benefit of Rainbow Resources has been that it has provided workers with a community to discuss their challenges.
The most important impact is that it gives the children who take part in Rainbow Resources activities the chance to stop discrimination before they can even develop homophobic views, and shows them that they can be whoever they want to be.
Link with the Council of Europe
European Youth Centre Budapest Study Session - Introducing Compasito IFM-SEI
European Youth Foundation - The project was funded and supported by the European Youth Foundation
The idea to develop Rainbow Resources came up in a study session in the European Youth Centre Budapest that focused on introducing Compasito to leaders of children and youth groups of IFM-SEI. The participants were amazed by Compasito, but felt that there were only few activities on gender equality, and none at all on gender and sexual identity and relationships. The first and second edition of Rainbow Resources was developed thanks to funding from the European Youth Foundation.
Partners and Contacts
The publication was developed by educators from IFM-SEI and with the support of activists and educators from around the world.