The Bill on Prevention against Discrimination came into force as of 1 January 2004 and this fact was a serious ground to accelerate all activities aiming at its implementation.
- increase the sensitiveness of Bulgarian society about issues of equality of women and men and intolerance of all forms of discrimination and violation of human rights based on sex;
- change the discriminating gender stereotypes and attitudes of rising generation and youth in school;
- lobby to mobilize the resources of educational institutions and civil society for effective implementation of the Bill on Prevention against Discrimination at national and local level;
- promote actively policies and projects to include gender issues in the state education standards aiming at kindergartens, primary and secondary schools and higher education.
- Gender Education Program was launched in 1997 as a preventive program and part of the project "Elimination of Violence through Research and Education". The project was implemented in partnership with Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights - USA.
Methodology was provided and adapted to the Bulgarian environment for teachers to be trained in: Gender and gender roles; human rights; women's and children's rights as human rights; violence in all its forms - domestic violence, trafficking in women and children, sexual violence; national and international legislation and institutions; family planning and sexual health.
The pilot program was realized in the first term of 1997/1998 school year in two schools at Sofia with students in class 11 (boys and girls) and class 9 (girls only). For more information, please see Projects - "Gender Education".
- Gender Project for Bulgaria Foundation in partnership with the Faculty of Journalism and Mass Communication to the University of Sofia Kliment Ohridski has realized the experimental course Gender and Media within Gender Education project supported by MATRA program of the Embassy of the Netherlands. 58 students took part in the project and wrote 20 diplomas - individual and group projects (texts, films and photo-project). The methodology for teaching gender issues in universities was a result of the successful partnership between Gender project for Bulgaria Foundation and the Faculty of Journalism and Mass Communication (for more information, please see Gender and Media project)
The program, from its very beginning, is open for children in kindergartens, pupils and students at different age as part of civil education to support the modernization of the Bulgarian education. 1250 pupils from 48 schools have been involved in the program for the period 1997 - 2001.
Future activity priorities - financing is looked for!
- Study of the state education requirements;
- Study of the strategy of the Ministry of Education and Science for incorporation of civic education in curricula;
- Study of the existing traditional norms of girls-boys relations and if there are any stereotypes influencing girls' and boys' behavior;
- Study and analysis of how Bulgarian teachers reproduce the existing stereotypes and if they create themselves new ones. The aftermath from the feminized teacher's profession;
- Study of the Bulgarian schools and universities readiness to apply gender education in practice;
- European practice and standards in education and legislation;
- Define the role of training centers for teachers' qualification and re-qualification;
- Organize discussions and appraisal of the results.
- Institutions - the Ministry of Education and Science;
- Local authorities;
- Schools and universities;
- Experts, authors of textbooks and supplements. Publishing houses;
- Information and study centers of higher schools and universities.
- Elaboration of methodologies and supplements for teaching gender issues as part of civil education.
- Education of experts and institutions elaborating education standards and programs.
- Education of teachers and school psychologists in the training centers for qualification and re-qualification.
- Elaboration of programs and methodologies for gender e-learning in higher schools.
For contacts:Bistra Boneva, program manager