Social Inclusion

Inclusion - a pre-condition for human rights

In my inclusion work I have been particularly inspired by involvement with a Development Education Exchange in Europe Project (DEEEP) Summer School, held in Härnösand, Sweden, in 2005.  The theme of the summer school was ‘Inclusion - a pre-condition for human rights’ and it explored inclusion at individual, organisational and global levels.

Participants came from approximately 40 different countries, many were from the South and a number were disabled.  There were 3 participant groups, A, B and C.  I was the facilitator for Group C, to whom I introduced various exercises, drawn from group psychotherapy practice, to demonstrate how our intra-personal exclusion/inclusion mechanisms influence our inter-personal exclusion/inclusion mechanisms and can impact on our ability to act inclusively.  See the report and toolkit from Group C. 

My thoughts on this theme are set out in this brief paper, which is based on one I prepared for the summer school: ‘Inclusion – A Pre-condition for Human Rights: How exclusion/inclusion mechanisms operate at individual, organisational and global levels.’

The ‘Pyramid Game’ a fun exclusion/inclusion game, which I devised, is described in the report and adapted as a toolkit by a participant group.  It was also adapted for children by a participant and included in 'Making a Difference', a development education resource for schools.

The DEEEP summer school
The summer school is a space for training and the exchange of practices intended for those working in development education. Educators from the South are invited to join their European colleagues in order to share their concerns and skills.  Its aims are:

  • To raise awareness of and improve the practices and methodologies linked to the work of NGOs in relation to human rights, inclusion and exclusion
  • To reinforce the capacity of development education NGOs through the development of a toolkit consisting of methods and practices, theoretical materials and checklists to be used in their daily activity to ensure an inclusive approach.
Becoming familiar with the exclusion/inclusion mechanisms that operate within each of us, can help us to act more inclusively towards others.
Harnosand, Sweden
Co-facilitating with Shuaib Chalklen, UN Special Rapporteur on Disability of the Commission for Social Development for the period 2009-2011.
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