The winner of the 2016 SOLIDAR Silver Rose Awards in the category ‘Building Learning Societies’ is La ligue de l’enseignement, a French Member of SOLIDAR, is this year also celebrating its 150 years of existence in 2016. Our award, to be received by the President of La ligue, Jean-Michel Ducompte, professor at the Institute of Political Science in Toulouse and lawyer, honours the long-standing engagement of this civic movement for the universal access to education and culture in Europe and worldwide. The motto of one of La ligue’s founders, the politician and journalist Jean Macé, has always been: “Our duty is not to educate voters, but to educate citizens”. We, as SOLIDAR, agree very much with this educational and humanistic approach.
This great movement of civic education was created in 1866 by Jean Macé brings together over 2.2 million citizens gathered in 32.000 local organisations. La ligue continues to be driven by its conviction that there’s no democratic progress possible without a constant emanicipation of both the individual and the collective. This specific goal is becoming more important in a time where different countries are coping with increasing notions of identity and sentiments of xenophobia and can be even considered crucial when segregation and other social evils find ground. La ligue believes that especially today it is cultural diversity that is contributing greatly to our societies and that enlightened and progressive universal principles should direct us towards a future where living together stands first.
The 2016 Silver Rose Jury decided to honour La ligue to emphasise the importance of their celebration and their dedication to secure education for all. The award will be presented by Julie Ward, Member of the European Parliament for UK Labour and Member of the Parliament’s committees on Culture and Education.