Hope-based Narratives Workshop

United Nations Human High Commissioner for Human Rights

On the 27th of October 2022our Human Rights Project Development Officer– Lelethu Nogwavu attended the Hope Based narrative Workshop. This was hosted by Office of the United Nations High Commissioner Regional Office for Southern Africa (ROSA) as a joint program with UN partners aimed at strengthening migrant integration and social cohesion through stakeholders’ engagement, socio-economic activities, and countering anti-migrant narratives in South Africa (Migration Multi-Partner Trust Fund (MPTF). Under the auspices of the Migration MPTF joint program the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights hosted a half-day pilot training session (one in Cape Town) on the topic of hope- and values-based narratives in the context of migration. The workshop objectives were aligned with the priorities in South Africa’s National Action Plan to Combat Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance.

During the sessions, several issues were discussed, including: 

  • The importance of narratives, and particularly hope-based narratives, in promoting and protecting the human rights of migrants. 
  • How this work intersects with countering racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, and related intolerance, including other forms of discrimination against migrants, as well as the links to South Africa’s National Action Plan to Combat Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance. 
  • How to apply the tools from the OHCHR Toolbox to reframe harmful narratives on migrants and migration to create stories built on a shared value of human rights. 
  • How to identify messaging or imagery to avoid. 
  • How to apply the tools from the OHCHR Toolbox to develop a hope-based narrative/story, either individually or collaboratively, that can be pitched to a media outlet or run on the participants respective organization’s social media channels. 
  • How to define and further develop avenues for creating hope- and values-based stories in South Africa, develop participatory, localized, and targeted media campaign strategies on migration and human rights, and grow a Community of Practice focused on hope-based narratives. 

During the event, AU partnered with Scalabrini and other organizations to come up with a presentation on the abovementioned topics. The organizations also discussed how they can work together as a coalition to bring about effective solutions and hope based ways of communications. Lelethu Nogwavu and some of the group members presented this at the event to other civil society organizations and stakeholders present. 

The Workshop was a good opportunity to engage everyone present and to gain usable skills, and further develop and publicise hope-based narratives in the context of migration and human rights. 

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