PEN PAPER PEACE - Creating peace through education

Pen Paper Peace e.V. is committed to education. Pen and paper symbolically improve the situation of young people. We want to build worldwide bridges through educational projects. Because education creates perspectives, courage and is the prerequisite for independent action.

On the one hand, we are committed to political work with children and young people in Europe. We want to encourage independent thinking, clarify global relationships and their influences on people and point out options for action without paternalism.

At the same time, we provide young people in the poorest regions of the world with access to education and a safe learning environment. In this way, we not only strengthen the individual life perspective of children, but also stabilize local civil societies in the long term. The countries where we implement our education projects include Haiti, Honduras and Namibia. PEN PAPER PEACE was founded in 2011 by Dr Alissa Jung and is organized almost entirely on a volunteer basis. The volunteers, who now number around 100, range in age from 13 to 65 and come from all over the world, help to realize our mission of educational justice. In the last few years, we have specialized in digital education for global learning.


Schools for Haiti
Through fundraising, we support the construction and maintenance of the St. Emma and St. Nicolas primary schools in Haiti's largest slum, Cité Soleil, and provide children who would otherwise be denied access to education with regular lessons and a reliable place to go. Since then, more than 600 school children attend our schools every year and learn to calculate, read and write. This gives them the opportunity for a self-determined future. Only Haitians work in the two schools, which means that the project creates local jobs and supports the local economy.
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Global learning in Germany and Italy
By studying the lives of their peers in countries of the global South, children and young people in Germany and Italy are invited to acquire new knowledge, adopt different perspectives and reflect on their own privileges. This is because school education as a whole is still very one-dimensional with regard to the historical causes of extreme poverty and the effects of the colonial era on current political instability in the former colonies. On our learning platform (lernen.pen-paper-peace.org), various digital learning formats are available to students and teachers free of charge. Themes include Haiti, Namibia and Honduras. A toolbox for your own social engagement is also online.

Training in Honduras
In Honduras, we now support two projects dedicated to the acquisition of education and vocational qualifications: The day care centre "Pasos Pequeñitos" (in English "Little Steps") and the vocational preparation "Talleres" (Spanish for workshops). During our first visit to Honduras in 2017, we got to know both projects.
Pasos Pequeñitos gives young single mothers in the Honduran capital Tegucigalpa the opportunity to complete their training or studies while their children are cared for in a loving environment. In this way, we can work effectively on two levels at once.
The vocational preparation project "Talleres" enables disadvantaged young people to gain practical experience in various crafts in a 3-year programme. The program ends with a nationally recognised examination. This is an important prerequisite for further qualification as a skilled worker.

Baumgartsbrunn Farm School Namibia
Since November 2020 we have been supporting the primary school "Baumgartsbrunn" in Namibia. The 200 pupils mainly come from scattered farms and unofficial settlements in the capital Windhoek. The school itself is state-run, but things beyond the lessons, such as the boarding school, the maintenance of the associated accommodation or the meals are not financed by the state. Therefore, the school is repeatedly threatened with closure. In order to enable the children to continue attending school and thus to have a future that they can shape according to their wishes, PEN PAPER PEACE cooperates with the Baumgartsbrunn primary school.

Our approach: EDUCATION CREATES PEACE

The barriers in the field of education are different in our four project countries: While many children in Haiti are denied basic education due to serious poverty and a lack of infrastructure, single mothers in Honduras are often faced with the problem of childcare and therefore have to drop out of their education. In most European countries, the universal right to education is enforced, but there is still a great need for improvement, e. g. with the mediation of global contexts or the possibility to develop perspectives from the theoretically acquired knowledge for own active action – towards strong, solidarity-based societies worldwide.

In line with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals, we use our educational projects to tackle country-specific barriers in order to build stable civil societies and give young people the opportunity to grow into independent and responsible personalities who stand up for one another globally. Our projects can therefore be assigned to one of the four levels that act as intermediate steps towards a more peaceful world.

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