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Call for nominations for the International UNITED Conference near Athens (GR), 07-12 April 2014

***Deadline for nominations 17 February 2014***

UNITED E-NEWS 04/02/14:

‘Your Vote can UNITE’ – Campaigning Against Populism and Racism

CALL FOR NOMINATIONS

Contents of this E-news:
– Call for nomination
– Description and aims
Program (draft)
– Technical Info
Expression of interest online form
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Dear colleagues and friends,

Please find below the information and nomination form for our next UNITED Conference
‘Your Vote can UNITE’ – Campaigning Against Populism and Racism
Near Athens (GR), 07-12 April 2014

Conference prepared by (1):

* Greek Council for Refugees (GR)
* Migrant Department of Athens Labour Unions Organization (GR)
* Associazione Trepuntozero (I)
* Association for Solidarity with Asylum Seekers and Migrants (TR)
* Nacionalinis socialinės integracijos institutas (LT)
* Foundation of Subjective Values (H)
* ENAR
* UNITED for Intercultural Action

All information can be found below, and on the UNITED website.
See also facebook.com/UNITEDnetworkConference

If your organisation is interested to nominate a representative, please fill the online expression of interest form as soon as possible (deadline 17 February 2014).

Best wishes,
Ralph du Long
Geert Ates
UNITED

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CALL FOR NOMINATIONS
‘Your Vote can UNITE’ – Campaigning Against Populism and Racism
Near Athens (GR), 07-12 April 2014

All over Europe, from Greece to Russia, from Georgia to Sweden, there is a rise of right-wing populist and extremist parties and movements.

They offer ‘easy solutions’ for the crises that many countries are facing. ‘Solutions’ like: terminating international agreements, leaving the EU, kicking out migrants, kicking out Roma and Sinti, kicking out… well, kicking out anyone who ‘looks’ or ‘acts’ differently.

And, according to these parties, there are many who look or act differently. Depending on the country, it can be Muslims, Jews, migrants, refugees, asylum seekers, Caucasians, LGBT, people from Eastern Europe or any other minority group. Typically these groups are blamed for problems in society or simply excluded because of who or what they are. And typically hate speech is used against them, sometimes resulting in hate crimes but always poisoning the atmosphere in society, always poisoning the public debate, always dividing people – never uniting them.

In May 2014, a few months from now, the 28 EU countries will vote for a new European Parliament. Populist and extremist parties tell you they don’t like Europe, whilst at the same time doing everything to win more European influence. A shift towards a more extremist EU parliament is expected. This will have a major impact on the policies of the EU and its neighbouring countries. It will lead to more hate speech, to worse treatment of migrants and minorities, to more division across the continent.

The question is: what can we, human rights activists, NGO’s, concerned citizens, do against these developments. How can we turn the tide? What can we do to unite instead of divide?

That is what this conference is about.

We offer you the opportunity to get involved in our campaigns against extremist and populist parties and movements. We will tackle questions such as: What can you do against intolerance, racism, and xenophobia? How can you become active on a European level or in your own country? How can you get involved in our European campaign?
We offer practice and theory. A series of methods, trainings, lectures, (political) debates for people from all over Europe: the EU, Russia, Balkans and Caucasus.
Participants from all these regions are invited to apply for this conference.

Greece
There are many reasons why this conference is near Athens. There are many problems that can be found everywhere in Europe, all of which are especially present in Greece. Greece was hit very hard by the crisis. It has a neo-Nazi party in Parliament. Many of the failures of European and Greek policies concerning migrants, refugees and asylum seekers have had a devastating effect on society. On top of that, Greece is the chair of the EU in the first half year of 2014.

UNITED is the largest pan-European anti-racist network of more than 550 organisations. Twice a year, at the UNITED network conferences, antiracist and human rights activists from all parts of Europe meet and discuss effective ways of combating racism and discrimination.
At a recent UNITED conference held in October 2013 near Prague (CZ) 75 participants from 32 countries looked at specific issues related to hate and populism in Europe and developed strategies.
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Program (draft)

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Technical Info:

Working methods
Debates, workshops, trainings, presentations, political cafés, icebreakers, information market, cultural activities, excursions, open forum, sharing good practices.
We use formal and non-formal working methods.

Participants
The conference is planned for around 75 participants (living in the countries of the Council of Europe) who represent (inter)national human rights, antiracist, antifascist, refugee, and minority rights organisations. Active grass-roots groups from all over Europe are also invited. Participation is rotated from one conference to another.

Priority will be given to nominations from young delegates (under 30 years old) with a minority background. Preference is given to those organisations that are interested in actions against racism and populism around elections.

Participants should act as multipliers, spreading the information to as many people as possible. We will try to reach an equal balance of female/male participants and a good geographical distribution.
Each organisation can nominate only ONE delegate.

Language
The conference language is English. All participants are expected to have at least basic knowledge of English. But don’t worry; English is almost nobody’s mother tongue. If you have difficulties in expressing yourself, surely we can help each other.

Financial conditions
Participation fee
The participation fee of the conference depends on the country where the nominating organisation is based:

120 Euro for participants from:
A, B, CH, D, DK, F, FIN, GB, I, IS, IRL, L, N, NL, S

60 Euro for participants from:
BG, CY, CZ, E, EE, H, HR, LV, LT, M, P, PL, RO, SI, SK

50 Euro for participants from:
AL, ARM, AZ, BH, BY, GE, KZ, KY, MK, MNE, MD, RS, RUS, TR, UA, UZB, XZ

0 Euro for participants from Greece

Full board & lodging & bus transfer to the venue & complete program are included.

Organisations that paid their 2014 supporter fee to the UNITED Network will receive a 50% reduction of the participation fee. More information on how to become a supporter you can find on our website.

Contribution to travel costs
Participants travelling from:
A, B, CH, D, DK, F, FIN, GB, I, IS, IRL, L, N, NL, S
UNITED can contribute maximum 75% to the costs of your travel, not more than 250 Euro.

Participants travelling from:
BG, CY, CZ, E, EE, H, HR, LV, LT, M, P, PL, RO, SI, SK
UNITED can contribute maximum 80% to the costs of your travel, not more than 280 Euro.

Participants travelling from:
AL, ARM, AZ, BH, BY, GE, KZ, KY, MK, MNE, MD, RS, RUS, TR, UA, UZB, XZ
UNITED can contribute maximum 85% to the costs of your travel, not more than 325 Euro.

Participants travelling from Greece
UNITED can contribute maximum 80% to the costs of your travel, not more than 50 Euro.

Please look for the cheapest and most environmentally friendly possibility to travel. We strongly encourage you to travel by night-train, bus or other cheaper means of transport to Athens.
For distances (one-way) under 800 km we can only contribute to costs of train or bus.

In order to be eligible for a contribution to your travel costs you are expected to attend the whole meeting and to prove your travel expenses providing an original invoice and all original tickets to UNITED.
UNITED can only contribute to travel costs made for the direct return route between your place of residence and Athens.

UNITED conferences can only take place when participants make an effort to contribute financially to their travel costs. We ask you to find out if there are alternative possibilities of funding your participation. Sometimes it is possible to find small local grants (e.g. a travel grant from a foundation, a university, an embassy or another sponsor). We would very much appreciate your help, enabling us to invite more participants!

Since we have limited sponsored places, delegates that can cover (part of) their own travel costs have a higher chance to be selected.

Visa
The cost of your visa can be reimbursed by UNITED on the base of an original invoice from the Embassy.

Date and place
The conference will take place near Athens (GR) and will start on Monday 7 April 2014 at 18:00 with a transfer from Athens to the venue.
Departure from Athens is foreseen for 12 April 2014 after 12:00
If you wish to arrive earlier or stay longer (on your own costs), we can help you to arrange your stay in Athens.

Further information
– Please fill in the online form completely providing all data as requested. If you invest more effort in the application it has more chance to be successful!
– Each organisation can nominate only ONE representative (living in Europe).
– Sending this form to UNITED does not guarantee that you will be selected for the conference – we receive many nominations.
– Only selected candidates will be informed about the result of their selection and receive further information via e-mail around 25 February 2014.

Application procedure
Organisations interested in nominating a delegate should fill the online nomination before the deadline: 17 February 2014 24:00

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UNITED is the pan-European network against nationalism, racism, fascism and in support of migrants and refugees, supported from more than 550 organisations from 48 European countries. How to join the network: see www.unitedagainstracism.org ‘joining the network’

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This event is made possible with the financial support of
* European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe
* Open Society Foundations
* Youth in Action Programme of the European Commission

(1) This conference is part of the project “Think Globally – Act Locally: Grassroot Networking and Campaigning Against Racism”, a partnership between UNITED and Greek Council for Refugees, Movimiento contra la Intolerancia and Foundation of Subjective Values, financed by Youth in Action Programme of the European Union, Action 4.6 – Youth support systems

The information contained herein does not necessarily reflect the position nor the opinion of our sponsors. Sponsors are not to be held responsible for any use that may be made of it.

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UNITED E-NEWS is an irregular email service to over 10000 organisations and contact persons active in the working fields: anti-racism, refugee support, anti-fascism, against antisemitism, migration, minority issues, intercultural youth work, against nationalism etc.

Regular postal mailings, containing publications such as Addressbook Against Racism, Calendar of Internationalism, Campaign reports, Posters etc. are sent to over 2300 European organisations. If you also would like to receive this mailing: see www.unitedagainstracism.org ‘joining the network’

You have received this E-news because your organisation or institution is listed in the UNITED online database and/or Addressbook Against Racism; you have attended a UNITED event; have participated in a UNITED campaign; are a partner in the working fields above; and/or have expressed an interest in UNITED network’s issues.

If you don’t want to receive E-news anymore, just let us know at info@unitedagainstracism.org

If you want to receive a copy of E-news to your own (private) email address, just send a message from that address with ‘subscribe’ in the subject line. (UNITED does not publish private (email) addresses)

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Join: 15-23 March 2014 European Action Week Against Racism
www.WeekAgainstRacism.eu
facebook.com/UnitedActionWeek
21March@unitedagainstracism.org

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UNITED for Intercultural Action
European network against nationalism, racism, fascism and in support of migrants and refugees
Postbus 413 – NL 1000 AK Amsterdam
phone +31-20-6834778 – fax +31-20-6834582
info@unitedagainstracism.orgwww.unitedagainstracism.org