The Border Association’s Cultural Ambassadors

WHO IS THE BORDER ASSOCIATION?

The Border Association is a national civic education association, which supports the Danish minority in Southern Schleswig (Northern part of Germany) with the slogan “For an open Danishness”. This means the Border Association acknowledges that globalisation affects everyone – including the Danish minority and other national and ethnic minorities. In the Danish-German border region the citizens have learned to engage in the cultural encounter in a productive fashion. They have gone from an againsteach-other mentality to a with-each-other mentality, perhaps even a for-eachother mentality. Experience from the Danish-German border region can be used as a source of inspiration for lingual and cultural diversity in a world undergoing vast changes. This is the purpose of the Border Association’s cultural ambassadors: When young men and women from the Danish minority in Southern Schleswig and from the German minority in Denmark tell their own stories, share their experience from a 60 year old peaceful co-existence as a minority in a multicultural environment in the Danish-German border region. These experiences can be used when dealing with the co-existence in other border regions or multicultural nations.

WHO ARE THE BORDER ASSOCIATION’S CULTURAL AMBASSADORS?

The Border Association’s cultural ambassadors are a national corps of debaters, who initiate dialogue about identity, nationality and citizenship. With its basis in knowledge of the history in the border region the cultural ambassadors convey the story of how cultural encounters don’t necessarily need to result in con- flict. The cultural encounter can on the contrary provide inspiration for new life-giving communities based on mutual respect. The cultural ambassadors consist of more than 35 multicultural young men and women, who offer a form of bridging between minorities and majorities. This is done through dialogue-meetings, happenings, with blog-posts on our cultural encounters blog, and on social media. Half of the cultural ambassadors are of the wide range of ethnic minority groups present in Denmark, while the other half are of the two national minorities in the border region; the Danish minority in Southern Schleswig (Germany) and the German minority in Southern Jutland (Denmark). In all, 15 cultural backgrounds are represented within the corps. Thusly, the Cultural Ambassador corps is a unified community of diversity!

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