Human rights

Good winds from land community award

Strengthening the land network of ResQ’s Friends in Italian communities with low civic cohesion to promote dialogue on migration and foster a more welcoming society that respects human rights


Who is behind this?

Cecilia Guidetti

ResQ - Onlus



Idea pitch

We are people just like you, tired of standing by and watching. We want to set sail a ship in the Central Mediterranean in order to aid the shipwrecked people fleeing from disasters and extreme poverty. We want to keep the public informed, through the media, schools and public meetings, to create a more conscious, welcoming society that respects human rights. ResQ is driven by grassroots citizens’ movements and we create Land Crews to ground the project also in low civic cohesion territories.

Where will your project idea take place?

Various villages, towns and cities with low civic cohesion in various regions of Italy

What is the specific societal challenge faced by this region?

The project would like to tackle the challenge of the prevailing narrative of migration and rescue at sea. It is a very divisive subject that also creates local tensions, especially in areas with low civic cohesion and high presence of migrants or refugees.
According to Ciak MigrACTION, a research on the Italians’ perception of migration conducted by Ipsos in 2019, the sample thought that migrants in Italy were 31% while they are only 9% based on the Institute for Statistics data. According to 33% of the respondents Italy should close its borders and 57% are convinced that migration is having a negative impact on the country. There is also a low confidence in how media deal with these topics, which makes a new narrative fundamental in order to reduce the episodes of hatred and intolerance

Who are you doing it for?

The target groups reached by this project are 2,000 youths, women and men living in communities lacking civic cohesion sensitised to create ResQ’s land crews in order to foster dialogue on human rights, migrations and asylum policies and promote better social inclusion. The project will strengthen civic engagement and social participation on a theme that in some cases may be very near to the target community, as in areas with high immigration rates, while in others it may be a general subject that needs to be debated more, also in order to try and advocate for new policies for migrations, including climate migrations, and asylum. Collective action will be promoted to solve local issues, to advocate on a higher level and to raise funds locally to support ResQ’s main goal: saving people

How do you plan to get there?

We will carry out two preliminary activities. The ResQ’s Network is broadening so the specific geographical areas in which the project will be implemented will be defined at the beginning of the project period. These will be areas with low civic cohesion, high presence of migrants/refugees and low acceptance of their presence by the local population. Secondly, we will contact local people to understand if there are local grassroots organisations willing to be involved or if a new group of people wants to become a Land Crew.
After this set-up phase, the main activities will be:
1. The birth of a ResQ’s Land Crew
1.1 Organise a meeting for approximately 100 people in order to present the ResQ’s project and its underlying themes such as human rights, inclusion, asylum, migrations, climate migrations…
1.2 Involve the local group of people to become members of a ResQ’s Land Crew
2. Taking action through dialogue, networking and advocacy
2.1 Promote dialogue within the group on the above-mentioned themes
2.2 Promote networking between various ResQ’s Land Crews
2.3 Promote participation in national events or advocacy initiatives at the national or European level
3. Taking action through fundraising
3.1 Support Land Crews in local online or face-to-face fundraising events to support ResQ’s main goal: saving lives. These events may be evenings, dinners, cultural events...

What are the expected results?

The expected change is to establish 20 new ResQ’s Land Crews and that most of them become groups that are open to dialogue and capable to activate themselves in concrete ways for good causes linked to migration, asylum, inclusion, rescue at sea and human rights. This will in turn improve the social climate around these issues, fostering dialogue and creating a more welcoming environment for migrants and refugees.
These are the project’s expected results:
E.R. 1: At least 16 new ResQ’s Land Crews will be activated by the end of the project
E.R. 2: At least 13 ResQ’s Land Crews will participate in national events or advocacy activities by the end of the project
E.R. 3: At least 16 ResQ’s Land Crews will participate in one fundraising initiative by the end of the project

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

Community members will be involved by a very powerful good cause that is rescue at sea. The Mediterranean, a melting pot of different cultures, has become the graveyard of countless victims who have drowned in silence in a desperate attempt to flee from tragic situations, war-torn countries and tyranny. It is not a crime to save lives. The adhesion to this strong good cause will help in people mobilisation as they feel part of a larger community that can contribute to an enormous goal: saving people. The project leaves room for individual creativity to set up local campaigns, which may be another leverage for participation for more active people. As Land Crews are locally-based, debates may also address some themes locally. In any case members are encouraged to take action collectively.

Why is this idea important to you?

ResQ has been into contact with people and entities from all over Italy since its birth and the feedback that we constantly receive is that most people’s perceptions about immigration are far from reality and that dialogue on this topic is increasingly difficult. The project team will be led by Ms Cecilia Guidetti, a sociologist, expert researcher in analysis, programming and assessment of policies, interventions and services in the social, education and health areas, who also collaborates with the Institute for Social Research (IRS) in Milan. We want to channel the outrage, helplessness and compassion that thousands of citizens feel in the face of the massacres taking place in our sea in accordance with the fundamental principles of humanity, impartiality, independence and neutrality

€ 20000,-

Total budget

€ 15000,-

Funding requested from Civic Europe

Major expenses

Travel and accommodation costs: 12000 EUR
Office supplies: 2000 EUR
Communication costs: 4000 EUR
Local space rental for initial meetings: 2000 EUR

What do you need from the Civic Europe community?

It would be very useful to receive advice on how to effectively involve differently-minded people, especially considering that often they think they are right and dialogue is not needed. Do you have any other suggestions on how to enhance our approach in general?


ResQ - People Saving People



Idea created on April 25, 2021
Last edit on June 10, 2021

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