On Saturday, June 4th, the International Institute of Debate and the Cafe Talk teams organized the Cafe Talk Platform Launch at the American Corner in AMIDEAST Tunis. Our teams welcomed Mr.Micheal Macey and Miss Refka Nsiri, who represented the US embassy as well as guests from The ministry of education and civil society representatives.
The project was kicked off by welcome remarks from the project coordinator Nizar Ben Salah and the AMIDEAST director Mr. Chris Shinn. The event was then shifted to presenting the project that started in February 2016 and explaining its phases since the initiation back in June 2015 with three young students from Sfax.
The highlight of the event was the platform so, a big amount of time was dedicated to presenting www.cafetalks.org. Jihad Rahmouni, the communication consultant at IIDebate, had the opportunity to present the user’s experience through the website, explain the utilities it offers and the way it is going to facilitate the Cafe Talk Registration process for those who are interested in either hosting or joining a Cafe Talk in their region. The Platform available, both in English and Arabic, also contained reports from previous Cafe Talks that had various topics like education and women’s rights but dealt mainly with CVE and suggested a big number of solutions.
The event was also an opportunity other organizations to talk about their experiences working on CVE and how the Cafe Talk concept can help develop the strategies we follow to solve the problems in the communities. In a panel, moderated by Mr. Elyes Guermazi, the executive director of IIDebate, representatives from IDEA , IRI, and the ministry of education explained why such initiatives are very important for our youth and why they consider them the first step to move forward as it is crucial for people to learn how to communicate effectively in order to agree on feasible solutions.
After welcoming the ambassadors from different regions like Mellasine, Gabes and Sousse, Mr.Elyes Guermazi, executive director of the International Institute of Debate, announced that the application was open for everyone to be a Cafe Talk Ambassador. This year long fellowship is yet another opportunity for people to be involved with the Cafe Talk community in Tunisia and
is a non-profit, whose mission is to develop next generation of civic leaders, activists and change agents by giving young people the opportunity to actively participate in the political process. By opening up spaces for democratic education and youth participation in schools and government, we strive to prioritize the needs of low-income youth and under-resourced schools and regions.