Budapest Workshop Welcomes Genocide Education Project

BUDAPEST—The Genocide Education Project provided European educators a presentation focusing on guidelines for educational curriculum on the subject of genocide. The talk was part of a week-long workshop sponsored by the Council of Europe, and hosted by Minorities of Europe, a pan-European organization which facilitates cooperation and exchange among minority communities and youth.

Sara Cohan presented the session, “Genocide: Catalysts and Consequences,” on behalf of The Genocide Education Project. Held at the Council of Europe’s European Youth Center in Budapest, the aim of the program was to provide an opportunity for youth educators within the human rights sphere to share their experiences and learn new methods for teaching about genocide and historical memory, particularly to promote awareness among the most vulnerable sectors of society.

“Working with youth educators representing minority groups from every  corner of Europe was exhilarating and challenging,” said Cohan. “The room was filled with people who had coped with genocide directly and the history of genocide in their native countries. Their work was outstanding and inspiring.”

Cohan spoke about the fundamentals and guidelines for teaching about genocide responsibly and constructively, reviewing “best practices” for guiding discussions with youth.  The presentation’s second segment reviewed educational resources, including lesson plans, books, articles, videos, and eye-witness testimony, around which teachers can structure classroom lessons.  Cohan also discussed two case studies regarding the teaching of genocide, related to the post-conflict zone of Rwanda and Armenian Genocide curriculum in the United States.

Cohan also participated in other workshop sessions and helped lead a tripto the Holocaust Memorial Center in Hungary.

Thirty-two participants from 20 countries attended the workshop, including educators from Albania, Armenia, Austria, Bosnia, Denmark, England, Georgia, Germany, Russia, Serbia,  and others. The workshop was entirely funded by the Council of Europe, which is based in France and includes forty-seven member countries. Founded in 1949, the organization seeks to develop common democratic principles of human rights across Europe.

The non-governmental organization, Minorities of Europe, which hosted the genocide education workshop, was established in 1995 as an outgrowth of the Council of Europe’s campaign against racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia and intolerance in Europe. It provides educational support for youth and youth educators by offering training courses, study sessions, seminars, exchanges and other activities, especially for those from minority backgrounds.

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For more information about the work of The Genocide Education Project please visit www.GenocideEducation.org. The Genocide Education Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that assists educators in teaching about human rights and genocide,particularly the Armenian Genocide, by developing and distributinginstructional materials, providing access to teaching resources andorganizing educational workshops.

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