For those of our members and partners who back in May participated in Social Platform’s Conversation with Matthew Caruana Galizia, in which I was involved as Social Platform’s President, will hopefully agree that it is absolutely vital that we do not give up talking about the importance of upholding human rights, rule of law, fight for social justice and respect for every person’s dignity.

So based on a similar conversation format, both Oonagh, our Volonteurope President, and I, as Volonteurope Secretary General, invite you to meet with our colleague and friend, Beata Zwierzyńska, this Thursday 10 June 2021 at 16:00 CET. Beata is an education researcher, supporter of activist teacher groups, member of Standing Committee at the Conference of INGOs of the Council of Europe, and vice-president at European Council of Doctoral Candidates and Junior Researchers. She walked a path of a teacher implementing democratic ways in the classroom to a volunteer at European level for policy making and advocacy. She is also an educator and consultant on countering disinformation to help European NGOs and activists combat harmful narratives and build trust through new narratives. In her research, she analyses the Polish round table talks of 1989 on education which planned to educate for democracy in Poland.

During the Conversation with Beata, we will talk about the current state of democracy, rule of law and human rights, both in new and old democracies, provoking questions about the quality of education in various European countries. Why education? Because it is one of the pillars of democracy, which we are fighting for, and it is crucial for critical thinking and informed decisions. “Sadly, education is often a hot topic to discuss, but action is taken rarely,” says Beata. “We need to return to the basics: education for democracy, so that volunteering and being part of civil society are valued, and LGBTI rights and gender equality are protected.”

We hope to see many of you, our members, partners and friends, you can register for your place and engage in the conversation here.