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VANUATU
PHASE 3

Promotion of a culture of peace, tolerance and coexistence among ethnic groups  

The Foundation for the Peoples of the South Pacific Vanuatu involved the two communities of Fresh Water and Paunagisu in the conception and the production of a 40-minute video, in the Bislama language, on “living together as different communities”. The video was distributed to school together with an information kit on anti-discrimination issues drafted by a curriculum writer.

Ecole Francaise de Port Villa conducted human rights education activities aiming at promoting a culture of tolerance and unity among the different communities living in Vanuatu. Projects included: organization of multicultural week at school where students and their parents signed a code of conduct against racism; translation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights into Bishlamar, English and French; organization of daily school quiz on the articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with prize awarded to winners of the quiz; production of T-Shirts presenting faces of people from different origins living in Vanuatu, with a message aiming at combating racism. The school also organized art competition on tolerance. Students produced various materials such as: posters, postcards, songs, cross-words, plays and poems. Fifty winners were awarded prize. 500 hundred human rights calendars for the year 2003 displaying primary and secondary students’ best work were edited and printed. Students performed and recorded a song (in English, French and Bislama) on combating racism.

Vanuatu Association of Women Graduates conducted activities aiming at promoting respect and tolerance for ethnic, linguistic and cultural diversity in Vanuatu. Main issues addressed the lack of tolerance towards expatriates married to ni-Vanuatu and children of mixed marriage. The organization produced a colorful poster entitled Cherishing Ethnic, Linguistic and Cultural Diversity and representing families with children of different backgrounds. It also conducted media campaigns to raise community awareness on the issue. Radio programmes reached many rural communities. Opportunities were taken to talk about the project during special events and celebrations such as the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and the launch of the Churches’ Decade to Overcome Violence. The poster was very well received and 1800 copies were distributed. The posters have been on display in schools, health centers, church buildings, municipal and governmental offices and raised further awareness of the need for cultural tolerance and diversity.

Bistaveos Production conducted a project aiming at raising people awareness on tolerance through the production by local young artists of song texts on tolerance and human rights in Vanuatu. The songs were taught to scholars of the region and recorded; in addition, video clips illustrating the songs were produced. At the end of the project, the organization disseminated 100 audio tapes, 100 video tapes to schools of the region.

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