Civic Empowerment Project
Thanks to a grant from USAID, 1,000 Port-au-Prince and Leogane-based educators will go through a 3-month Circles of Change training. The training will be customized so that in addition to learning participatory teaching and leading techniques, educators will also spend time studying together the Haitian Constitution and civic responsibilities.
Using a Haitian adaptation of Touchstones Discussion Method, individuals in these groups are developing skills in listening, thinking critically, and communicating their thoughts. Over time, groups become more conscious of group dynamics: who is talking and who is not and how do we make sure a few don’t dominate and that some voices never get heard? Are we tolerant and respectful of people who see things differently? Are we willing to acknowledge our weaknesses and admit that we could be wrong?
People develop skills that help them to better work out problems, find solutions, and to collaborate effectively. Once the groups spend a number of weeks reading and discussing short thought-provoking texts–Aristotle, Plato, the Bible, Darwin, African and Haitian stories, etc.–they will then begin reading and discussing the Haitian Constitution. During the three months, the groups will also plan and realize two Open Space meetings, which are highly participative meetings that help people to work effectively on issues that they determine to be important.
*For a photo archive of this project, click here.
*For blog updates on the Civic Empowerment Project, click here.
*For project description, click here.
*For a spreadsheet detailing each group, click here.
*For a grant report on the first Civic Empowerment group leaders meeting, click here.
*For a grant report on the second Civic Empowerment group leaders meeting, click here.
*For a grant report on the third Civic Empowerment group leaders meeting, click here.
*For the final report from the Civic Empowerment Project, click here.