The Charter is:
An International Project for our Common Responsibility, in Every Continent
The Charter of Human Responsibilities is an international process for discussion and awareness raising on the concept of human responsibility. The project expresses the concept of responsibility, in all of its complexity, through multiple actions on the field. It is a network of individuals and organizations (environmental organizations, groups of journalists, non-violence activists, educators, etc.), from 16 countries and every continent. Through the network, the Charter is disseminated as a pretext for collective thinking, sharing experiences in empowerment and responsibility taking, implementing actions, but also as a “pre-text,” insofar as the text is submitted for debate.
The Charter itself is a position paper, which was produced after a long survey and dialog process involving hundreds of persons from a variety of social and cultural contexts in every continent. It offers leads to thinking and action in the form of 10 principles referring to themes such as Human Rights, power, justice, science, the environment, peace, culture… It does not impose a exclusive view of responsibility; it includes consideration of the entire diversity of current social, political, and economic necessities.
The Charter project has given birth to a variety of actions in every continent, all leading to the issue of our individual and collective responsibility. Many of these actions have dealt with the environment issue: How can we educate the younger generations on environmental issues? How can we take inspiration from the principles and the interpretation of the concept of responsibility in traditional societies?
Brazil: An environmental-education project around the issue of responsibility with the participation of 4 million persons
The Philippines and New Zealand: The concept of responsibility among native peoples
In the Philippines, the local Charter facilitation group organizes, in collaboration with the Center for Positive Futures, teacher-training sessions around the issue, Ethics and Responsibilities in the Teaching Profession. It uses a video called Offering to the Earth, which presents the history of the Filipino nation, its people’s strong values, the interaction between school and community, and the Charter of Human Responsibilities. [For further information on these activities, click herehttp://www.charter-human-responsibilities.net/spip.php?rubrique156]
The local Charter facilitation group in the Philippines also facilitated a workshop on the theme Cultures and Responsibility in March 2006
In New Zealand, the local coordination Charter team is prioritizing involvement with indigenous people of this region. For those who have come as later settlers to this region, it is imperative to orient their future in collaboration with Maori, Pacific Islands peoples and Aboriginal people. There is growing willingness to do this, while many factors, such as the globalized free market, with the myriad effects that reach into every corner of our lives and undermine values and institutional efforts to work together in ways that are more respectful of indigenous experience and knowledge. There are many contradictions, including that indigenous people as well as the rest of the population, seek to engage advantageously in the global marketplace. [Further details herehttp://www.charter-human-responsibilities.net/spip.php?rubrique156] As a result of a national seminar we held on water as part of an Alliance initiative in 2003, different activities have taken place associated with the ecology of water and land management. In the Lake Taupo region, an indigenous committee and a government agency have developed protocols for an effective collaboration on land management, which support cultural safeguards associated with the land and the commercial operations of the government department. A research project to investigate this project as a case study has been able to link with the Charter initiative and bring the concept of responsibility as a theme of the project. [Further details herehttp://www.charter-human-responsibilities.net/spip.php?article101]
Europe: Actions for the environment and responsibility
In Europe, the local Charter action team comprises educators and activists from three countries: Italy, France, and Greece. The team began its actions in the course of 2005 with a research project on social representations around the concept of responsibility in the three countries. In Greece, presentations of the concept of responsibility are introduced through the facilitation of youth programs (painting, play acting) in collaboration with volunteer educators. In France, the local team organized a number of seminars in the framework of teacher-training programs on Environmental Education. Still in France, discussions were organized on the Charter of Human Responsibilities in public places (cafés), as well as during environmental colloquia (Days for Water in the Auvergne region). In Italy, action is aimed at awareness raising among engineers and architects on environmental themes (issues related to environmental impacts, bioclimatic architecture, etc.).
In parallel, in the spring of 2006, the European team published – in French and in Greek – the first issue of a series of educational documents on environment and responsibility, called Agir responsible (responsible acting). This issue presents the concept of the ecological footprint and suggests actions “to reduce our footprint print on the Earth.” The European team also organized in the summer of 2007 – in collaboration with the Brazilian team – an art show featuring Greek and Brazilian artists who submitted paintings on the theme of responsibility.
European Coordination Team for the Charter of Human Responsibilities