Development cooperation, an ideal tool for union renewal

Education International and its affiliates have committed themselves and worked through their development cooperation activities towards ensuring that young and early stage teachers and support personnel are adequately represented and empowered within their unions

Work based on EI Congressrsquos resolutionnbsp This commitment was reaffirmed in the Education International EI Resolution on young and early-stage teachers researchers and support personnel adopted by the 7th EI World Congress in 2015 The resolution urges member organisations to ldquomake concerted efforts to ensure that young and early stage teachers and support personnel are adequately represented within organisational structures and are empowered to participate in decision-making processes within their unions including as members of collective bargaining teamsrdquonbsp nbsp The first step​ towards reaching the resolutionrsquos strategic goals was the organisation since 2015 of yearly workshops on ldquoYoung teachers for quality education ​and effective unions in African countriesrdquo​ in Dakar Senegal Targeting young under the age of 35 unionists from Cocircte drsquoIvoire Gabon Senegal and Togo these workshopsrsquo objectives​ are to increase the participation of young members especially young women in unions​ increase the number of new young members​ and to establish a cohort of young teacher trade unionists in African countries​nbsp nbsp Adoption of SDGsnbsp The new Sustainable Development Goals SDGs were also adopted in 2015 The 10 targets linked to SDG4 on education are all closely aligned with the programmes of EI and many of its member organisations These include work on​ quality education​ equity and inclusion​ early childhood education gender equality and continuous professional development However EIrsquos member organisations must mobilise their collective efforts immediately if these targets are to be met by 2030​ nbsp Opportunities for EI young advocates In a second step towards the implementation of its resolution on young and early stage educators​ EIrsquos secretariat held the first global workshop for over 30 young and early stage activists in Brussels from 17-19 July 2017 This aimed to deepen participantsrsquo understanding of the global policy environment its impact on national-level advocacy and campaigning and how unions can engage with a particular focus on Agenda 2030 ndash including SDGs ndash in the processes of financing implementation and monitoring The workshop also​ supported young emerging union leaders through focused capacity building in the areas of advocacy campaigning and strategic messaging and mobilising and organising And it also established an EI platform of youngearly stage teachers​nbsp nbsp Several participants have shared the in-depth analyses of the SDGs in events and activities organised in their respective unions​ including for example Julien Yoman from the Syndicat National des Formateurs de l39Enseignement Technique et de la Formation Professionnelle SYNAFETP Ivory Coastnbsp nbsp ldquoI shared the experience of the Brussels meeting with the National Executive Board as soon as I was back since I am myself a member of this boardrdquo he says ldquoOn 7 October the SYNAFETP celebrated World Teachers39 Day with a conference and my presentation on SDGs After establishing a brief history of SDGs I defined them and outlined actions to achieve themrdquonbspnbsp nbsp The SYNAFETP board has since included SDGs in its work programme and made a commitment to participate in any meeting or working group on SDGs in the Ivory Coast Yoman stresses To this end a union tour began in October 2017 and SYNAFETP members received a copy of his presentation on SDGs to inform grassroots teachers nbsp Mentoring young union membersnbsp Within the Malaysian Academic Movement MOVE also young activists are perceived as essential for union renewal and mentoring of members says Robert Jeyakumar Nathannbspnbspnbsp nbsp ldquoThe challenges are different as we change for a different generation so union renewal is important to stay abreast of new challenges that society is facingrdquo he underlines ldquoIt is also to ensure that there is a succession from senior to younger union members so the struggle continues and new leaders lead the strugglerdquonbspnbsp nbsp Adding that unions need young leaders he recommends that young leaders can be paired with older experienced leaders in order to address issues better ldquoEmpower young leaders to run projects Let them have experience being leaders and run small-scale projects nationwiderdquonbsp nbsp Yessica Cubero Youth Secretary of the Sindicato de Trabajadores de la Educacioacuten Costarricense SECCosta Rica agrees ldquoYoung teachers need trade unions to solve their problems collectively and the trade union movement needs young people to get strongerrdquo she says advising EI to support national affiliation campaigns targeting young members nbsp Stimulating participation of young activists Enhanced participation of young activists in education union decision-making structures can be encouraged further by development cooperation among EI affiliates A great example is given by Union Deacutemocratique des Enseignantes et des Enseignants du Seacuteneacutegal UDEN General Secretary Awa Wade She recounts how in 2014 the French Syndicat national des enseignements de second degreacute-Feacutedeacuteration syndicale unitaire SNES-FSU supported their Senegalese colleagues by organising workshops on capacity building targeting young and female members in 2014 in diverse Senegalese regionsnbspnbsp nbsp ldquoRecognising the growing numbers of aging members at union level and with many comrades retiring our goal was to be able to recruit young people and hold workshops in 14 regions only for young people under 35 yearsrdquo she says ldquoThese young people were responsible for going out at grassroots level recruiting their peers and at the same time increasing their training on the basis of trade unionism and collective bargainingrdquonbspnbsp nbsp She also acknowledges that cooperating with SNES-FSU allowed UDEN to work on achieving improved numbers of young members with two of them joining UDENrsquos National Executive Boardnbsp

[Tue, 06 Mar 2018 14:53:00 +0100] | DIGG THIS

Related links/file downloads: