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Tabadoul Montreuil - Beit Sira
Start date: May 5, 2015, End date: Feb 4, 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

In the framework of the decentralised cooperation initiated in 2005 between the city of Montreuil (France) and the town of Beit Sira (Palestine), both cities intend to strengthen the links between the inhabitants from the two territories. They decided to target teenagers (14-17 years) because this is a decisive age for involvement in collective projects, immersion in another culture and growing of self-confidence. In order to give to youngsters from a sensitive urban area the opportunity to open themselves to the world, the project is led, on Montreuil’s side, by a Social Centre located in a social and urban renewal neighbourhood. On Beit Sira’s side, isolation is a crucial issue for the inhabitants: located near the separation wall, this Palestinian town is under Israeli military occupation. The cooperation relationship between the two cities gives the opportunity to cross borders and discover another culture. Ten teenagers from each city will be involved in this project during more than a year and a half. The two groups of youngsters will be prepared to intercultural meetings through language courses, workshops and online exchanges. The young people will have met in April 2015, during the stay of the group from Montreuil in Beit Sira. In a reciprocity-based exchange, the meeting in France will take place in July 2015, during 10 days. But this won’t be the end of the exchange. Being “ambassadors” of this project, the youngsters will share their experience with the other inhabitants through the communication activities that will be organised in Autumn 2015. During this stay in Montreuil, the activities will focus on two themes: "young citizens actors" and "video". During the "young citizens actors" workshops, the group of young people will prepare together a festive event dedicated to the inhabitants and will elaborate games and activities for children. The video activity will provide not only the medium of the intercultural exchange, but also the memory of this project. Self-portraits will be made both in Montreuil and in Beit Sira in order to facilitate the meeting between the two groups. And during the meeting, the youngsters will participate together to video workshops in order to create a documentary film that will bear witness to this experience. This project will have many effects and impacts on both territories: strengthening of social cohesion, promotion of civic values (solidarity, gender equality, peace culture), involvement in collective projects and non-profit organisations, change of the way youngsters see themselves. Because they will be ambassadors of the project, the participants will pass on to other inhabitants of their city the values and the experiences that come out from this exchange. “Tabadoul” means “exchange” in Arabic language. Chosen by the group of teenagers from Montreuil, this word has been approved by the group of young people from Beit Sira to entitle the project.

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