Do You Want a Fair and Just Hungary?

Flash mobs, songwriting competition, or a thematic week at school – these are the ways students would take action against corruption and injustice in Hungary. The students sent in their ideas in the form of an application for a call launched by Transparency International Hungary (TI) and the Romaversitas Foundation. The aim of the program is to involve the youth in the fight against corruption. Judging by how active and inspired students were, it seems that they are ready to be key participants in the anti-corruption movement!

For the competition, entitled “Students against corruption”, the announcers were expecting projects which can really be implemented and also have a clear-cut, unambiguous message, that is: corruption is harmful and fighting against it is necessary even in schools.

The project invented by the students of Apáczai Csere János ELTE Secondary Grammar School set up to organize a week against corruption at school. A poster exhibition and a flash mob, entitled “Don’t fall for dirty money’’ are also parts of the thematic week. The student group from Szomolya made a short film about how poor people are punished for wood- stealing, while the same thing done by rich people goes unnoticed. The winners from the Klebersberg Boarding School of Kaposvár thought of a short-story writing competition, while the project of the students of Kalyi Jag Vocational School for the Roma minority entailed organizing a school-news program, a poster and a forum on the Internet, based on the input of answers provided by random respondents on the street to issues of corruption.

The creators of the four winning projects participated in a training in Budapest, held between the 9th and the 11th of May. There, representatives of TI and Romaversitas held lectures to the participants on how they can contribute to a transparent public life in Hungary. And, of course, all the student groups got professional help to realize their ideas. The students’ success won’t depend on money either: each group is awarded a thousand Euros to realize their ideas.

As part of the project, we made a training material for secondary school students, in order to inform them clearly about corruption, about why it is a bad thing. It is important that students learn at a young age how to recognize corruption and how to act if they come across such kind of situations”- said Emese Hortobágyi, head of people engagement programs at Transparency International Hungary.

The project itself is international: the Slovenian chapter of Transparency International and a training organizing association called Mladinski Ceh launched the same call for projects for Slovenian secondary school students. After the trainings, these organizations will keep following the winning groups, helping them to realize their work. At the end of the program the winners will participate in a three-day conference in Slovenia, where they will present their projects.

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