This project is part of the broader project funded by the British Embassy in Belgrade “Countering Violent Extremism and Radicalization Threats in Serbia through Community-Based Early Warning and Preventive Engagement”. The latter is aimed at establishing and consolidating a foundation for efforts to prevent and counter violent extremism and radicalization that can lead to terrorism (VERLT) in Serbia. Preventing and countering VERLT is recognized as a comprehensive and multi-faceted approach in the global fight against terrorism to which the Government of Serbia is committed. The project encompasses three themes of research, in specific: support to community policing/municipal safety councils (MSCs), intercultural education and civic participation and engagement (civic education).
This specific project, implemented by the selected implementation partner (Forum for Ethnic Relations), seeks to develop a pilot project that could feed into broader curricular change aimed at integrating elements of intercultural competence into school curricula in Serbia. These skills give young people tools to resist narrow narratives and stereotypes that are a key part of developing personal resistance to extremist messaging. The project aims to build a group of young people with intercultural skills who can reach out to their peers (particularly marginalized and hard-to-reach young people) and spread basic information on Serbia’s multicultural history and broader European values of diversity. Trainers will be trained through interactive workshops and panel debates, and will participate in activities with representatives of local religious and national communities. The young people will be engaged in developing a publicly accessible educational “Reader” on interculturalism that can be used in Niš and beyond.