World Student Forum 2012
Time Span: August 2012 to August 2013
Activities: Five-day training, one day debate and Conference, three visits to six countries
Goal: Strengthen the student movement in authoritarian countries
These are exiting weeks! Solid Foundation is busy organizing the first World Student Forum, planned to be held in December 2012. During this forum sixty students from six different countries and four continents will gather in the Netherlands to prepare for their roles as future leaders of their countries. During a five-day training program they will exchange experiences, follow workshops and inspire each other with their knowledge and ideas. These students are selected from the student movements that operate under the, to a greater or lesser extent, repressive regimes of Zimbabwe, Venezuela, Egypt, Turkey, Moldova and Singapore. Upon their return they will be better able to challenge and improve their local situations.
On the sixth day of the forum about 1500 European students, activists, academics and politicians will join the group to debate the role of students as future leaders and about student movements as part of civil society.
Before and after the forum Solid will visit the participating countries to guide them during the preparations for the WSF and the strengthening of the organization following the WSF.
The student movements from the six countries all have to cope with a repressive regime in a certain degree. These regimes hinder their ability to commit themselves to accessible, objective and high quality education. In many cases, it also hampers their freedom to express their views and to stand up for fellow students, without fear of legal or even violent sanctions. Participation in the WSF should allow these students to be better able to cope with these situations and to fight, despite the authoritarian regime, for a better future.
The expertise of the World Student Forum will mainly come from the sixty students who participate in the five-day training program. They are experienced in striving for social change under an authoritarian regime and will be able to share their stories with students who are in similar situations. Their expertise is the most valuable knowledge of the forum. To supplement this knowledge we will work together with specialized European organizations in the field of education, democracy and civil society. Together with these organizations, we will discuss the contents of the forum and arrange the program and workshops.