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Being the citizen that I am | Civic Europe
Arts and cultural activities, Social inclusion

Being the citizen that I am

Bringing people together to celebrate their differences, learning how to respect each other by recognizing their own self-worth - a way to educate and integrate communities through theatrical arts


Who is behind this?

Fundação Champagnat



Idea pitch

What if your voice could be heard? What if you could reach other people by speaking your truth and by listening to theirs? Join this theatre group and share your expectations, your fears, and, most importantly, your DREAMS! We believe we can build a more egalitarian, fairer, kinder, and more cohesive society than the one we currently know. But, for that, we must communicate with each other so, by respecting one another, we can all learn and thrive! Can we count you in?

Where will your project idea take place?

Cascais, center-west Portugal

What is the specific societal challenge faced by this region?

All the society is affected by the social problems which the segregation of social neighbourhoods´ residents generates. Hence, it is very important to create opportunities for a wide branch of social actors to push for their needs and social cohesion. Art is the chosen methodology to promote an organized and collective social manifest that generates a massage capable of transforming the ways of integration and building od a unified voice able to influence public policies. We aim to promote social change through an aware, organized, and cohesive group shedding light on social problems and promoting equity and equality of rights and opportunities.

Who are you doing it for?

Given the main goal of bringing people of different backgrounds together to better understand and respect each other´s individualities and cultures, this project will aim to reach people from different ethnicities, nationalities, and age groups. The more diversified the merrier! This multiplicity of groups will require the planning of different sessions, for example, sessions destined to children, sessions destined to youths, sessions destined to the elderly, etc. It will also be interesting to plan sessions with people that live in the same building and/or floor to improve their relationships. On this task, the community leaders will be key figures to reach out to those groups, and the fact that the organization already has an established relationship with them will be a starting bonus.

How do you plan to get there?

Project Sensibilization and Dissemination – talking and listening to formal and informal groups in the neighborhood (Residents´ Association, Dance Groups, Music Groups, Social Projects, etc) and presenting them the project; Participation and involvement of people/groups that will join the artistic project to share their abilities and history; Weekly sessions with those interested in joining the project to understand their challenges, needs, opinions and the changes they would like to see in the community; Weekly training sessions with participants regarding the organization of a multidisplicinar theatre play, such as voice and body technical training, the teaching of a narrative sense; theatrical interpretation; active listening and cultural sharing through different groups. Structure of the narrative line to achieve the consciousness message the proponents would like to see depicted on stage and setting of the approach to be used to share the message on stage; Group creation of the play´s acts in order to show the differences and similarities amongst groups; Public presentation of the play(s) and the promotion of continuity of informal cultural groups as well as the support provision to form new formal or informal resident groups that keep working in the local cohesion, now equipped with the knowledge provided by this very initiative.

What are the expected results?

By the end of the project, we hope to have achieved higher levels of awareness and comprehension in the community, as well as an equal relationship between the residents of the city built on the understanding of their rights and duties. We also hope to have spread the knowledge of sovereignty organs and government power and what are the means to get their voices to be heard in the places that can best respond to the requests of the citizens of these neighborhoods, enhancing inclusion and social cohesion. A conscious and positive change in the way citizenship should be carried out, as well as a change in the way that local and government authorities analyze and respond to citizens´ requests.

How does your idea strengthen active citizenship at a local and community level?

Part of the work of preparing the show goes through the analysis of the fundamental basis of life in a democratic society and the functioning of the institutions that represent it, as well as the behavior of the citizens it contains. Through the analysis of the proposals for the construction of the theater show, it is intended that the result will serve as a stimulus, both for the actors and the public, which can be used later on real issues. It is through the exposure and debate of concrete situations that we intend to find answers to resolve social problems. The theater will be the basis for the acquisition of knowledge and civic education as well as the possibility of organically exposing the voice and message of those who previously did not know how or where to do it.

Why is this idea important to you?

Fundação Champagnat has developed projects in community intervention and in the promotion/protection children and young people´s rights. In this project, we will count on socio-cultural animation, social education, social work, theater, and family therapy technicians. This project pursues our objectives and mission within the scope of social inclusion. The theater trainer and director of this project have carried out several theatrical experiences. He himself comes from a country area where resources are scarce and active citizenship is residual. It was through theater that he came to have a deeper knowledge of social dynamics and the exercise of citizenship. He recently started a project in public schools that empower children to exercise their citizenship through Art.

€ 35000,-

Total budget

€ 35000,-

Funding requested from Civic Europe

Major expenses

Personnel costs € 14.400.00
Office Supply € 1.500,00
Travel and Stay € 1.200,00
Insurance € 1.440,00
Advertising € 650,00
Event Production Expenses € 6.860,00
Production and Editing of Good Citizenship Practices Manual € 8.950,00

What do you need from the Civic Europe community?

We would like to know if our way of raising awareness and getting participation from communities and local authorities (government, etc.) is efficient or if there are better ways to foster the interest and participation of both. Thank you for this opportunity!


Fundação Champagnat

Idea created on April 25, 2021

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