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Mateusz and Natalia

Love not hate – marking Valentine’s day in Kielce, Poland

28 Feb 2019 - by Natalia Macioszek & Mateusz Trojanski

To mark Valentine’s day this year, pupils at the VII Josef Pilsudski High School in Kielce, in central Poland, took part in a workshop based on the Stories that Move online toolbox against discrimination.

The workshop, entitled Love not Hate, was conducted by Mateusz Trojański, the Polish coordinator of Stories that Move. It took place within the framework of an Erasmus+ school exchange. Later this year the Polish students will meet with students from Belgium, Portugal and the Netherlands.

The workshop opened the group to differences between them all, and highlighted the importance of equality and combating discrimination.

Patrycja Ksel, one of the students, said: “I think that such classes are needed, because school is a place where people tend to subconsciously hurt one another. We are sometimes not aware that our actions may upset someone. Talking about it helps to understand it”.

Another commented: “We are all different. We have different interests and different attitudes towards life. But we all share the same feelings. And yet, many people look down on others – for all sorts of reasons, from skin colour to sexual orientation.”

The workshop promises to be the start of a fruitful collaboration between the Anne Frank House and the school, where Stories that Move has had very positive feedback from both students and teachers. In March, Mateusz Trojański and Natalia Macioszek, who is volunteering for a year at the Anne Frank House, will return to Kielce to give a Stories that Move workshop for teachers.

The response to this first workshop in Kielce has been encouraging. The city council has made it a part of its programme to tackle hate speech.


Mateusz Trojański at the VII Liceum Ogólnokształcące im. Józefa Piłsudskiego in Kielce

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