It’s a beautiful day in Istanbul and in the opening of the European Social Forum 2010 (ESF) there was activism in the air.
We arrived at Maçka Democracy Park bright and early to set up the Amnesty stalls. AI Turkey staff and volunteers were joined with staff from London and Brussels and all brought their ideas to make our stalls creative and flashing for the public.
In the meantime, a smaller Amnesty group met with speakers that were joining our seminar on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of people on the move.
Back at the stalls, everything is set and ready to go; all the Amnesty materials for Non-Discrimination, Demand dignity, World Cup and Human Rights Defenders and several Turkey reports and actions are in place; we are all wearing our colourful T-shirts and the bright yellow colour of the Amnesty banners stands out from afar.
So far, at least 30 people have ‘put their face against discrimination’. They held balloons with their own personal messages against discrimination, in their language and had their photos taken for our new upcoming Fight Discrimination website.
“One of the nicest pictures was a family; grandparents, parents and children, 3 generations united against discrimination” said Veronica Scognamiglio, Campaign Coordinator on Non-Discrimination in Europe Campaign.
“The best thing is to meet other NGOs and build a relationship with them. For AI people here from Turkey and from other countries, this solidarity team is very efficient for the Amnesty identity, for motivation and for feeling the collective soul”, said Murat, one of the volunteers from AI Turkey.