This project includes six training (role-play) seminars on the following topics:

  • Has Russia ever been a legislative state?
  • Rights and responsibilities of teenagers in democratic society
  • Attitude to yourself and to others who are not like you
  • What is the reason of conflicts and what can be done to have less conflicts
  • HIV\AIDS prevention
  • What are non-commercial organizations and their role in the life of teenagers
Role-play form of training sessions allows to destroy a common stereotype with the teenagers "teacher speaks - I listen" and creates an easy and trustful environment. Besides this, the role situations give an opportunity to participants to have their own experience which is remembered for a long time.
You can waste hours in talking about the feelings of being chained to a wheelchair and the children will skip this information thinking: "this has nothing to do with me, I'm safe and sound".
But once they try to be in a role of a "wheelchairer", even if it is just a simulation - their attitude to this will change.

"The Basement" center continues to conduct educational seminars for high school students in Moscow. Unfortunately, despite the great popularity, there are no sufficient time or material resources for the trainers' "field-work" training sessions. But we do hope that educational seminars for adults and the published book with the detailed description of the methodology will help to largely increase the number of potential project participants.

1996 - beginning of the project, seminars in 10 schools of Moscow
1997 - the following stage in specialized establishments for minors; brochure publication. Supported by grants of the Open Society Institute ("Civil Society" Program)
1998- joint conduction of the project in the Ural region of Russia in cooperation with the "Take Care" foundation (Cheliabinsk, Magnitogorsk etc);
- seminars for teenagers from the most "unwell" schools in Moscow; issue of booklets
1999- educational seminars for adults in 5 Russian cities. Publication of the book describing the methodology of conducting trainings. Supported by UNICEF ("Young People's Health" Program)

"I invented these seminars because from conversations with children it became clear: they know nothing about the civil society, for them it is just an irrelevant, out-of-the-books notion, in no way associated with them. But I am sure that especially in our country each person from the age 15-16 must realize that the civil society starts from him/herself. Somehow they rarely hear about it in schools, however, on the other hand - who will tell them there? Most adults don't understand it themselves. That is why it is so important that today's teenagers have a standpoint of their own country's citizens as soon as possible. This position implies the following: I do not think that nothing depends on me, I do not wait for someone to make life better, I am trying to make a change."
Amir Tagiev, Author of the Project

"The time that we spent together allowed once again to think about the complicated questions of life, to hear points of view of other people, to evaluate the significance of the risen issues both for the society and for an individual. The atmosphere of the seminar was so warm that I felt myself very comfortable (and that doesn't happen often). I was really surprised that the children are worried about the same issues as us, adults.
I am looking forward to having your book and to try and help teenagers in the same way as you do."
Participant of an educational seminar for adults Teacher of the secondary school #45, Saint-Petersburg

"Thank you for the seminar on the non-commercial organizations.
Many of us would be really happy to work there, however, not now (there's just no time because of so many classes). We will try to put this idea into life when we finish school and so far we are going to try and organize psychological assistance service for teenagers in our own school."
Class 8b, school #112, Moscow

"Cool! If classes in school were taught in the same way, I wouldn't even think of skipping them!"
student of school #296, Moscow

From the participants' final evaluation forms