Respect Education Foundation

Increasingly more often, young people live in different worlds that do not understand each other well enough, which can lead to tensions. The existence of diversity is a given fact. The strength of citizenship education lies in finding what it is that connect people within all this diversity, instead of what divides them. Education has an important role in this, because it is the basis of the formation of society.

Socially safe learning and living environments are the most important preconditions for a proper development of young people and the society around them. A school represents a mini society that serves as a training ground for young citizens to learn how to function in society. A school is a diverse community, where everyone simply has to get along. That is why this is an ideal place to gain experience, to practice social manners, and to deal with differences of opinion. REF helps schools to clarify these (citizenship) goals and to realise appropriate policies and activities.
With trainings, teaching materials, and customised projects, REF supports teachers in guiding young people in their social emotional development so that they can grow up to be committed and responsible citizens. REF works both nationally and internationally in primary and secondary education, in intermediate vocational education and at teachers’ training colleges for primary education.

Ever since its foundation in 2006, REF has been organizing the national Week of Respect every year, in the second week of November. In 2019 it will be from 4 till 10 November. Central to this week is connecting with each other, both within and outside the school, both with peers and with other generations. Only when you know what occupies the minds of others, and why, can you develop understanding and empathy towards one another and actively contribute to a society in which everyone feels at home.

In the past twelve years, about 3,500 schools (primary, secondary, intermediate vocational), more than 1,000,000 pupils, several teachers’ training colleges, 150 municipalities, hundreds of mayors and aldermen, numerous civil society organisations and eleven national sports federations have participated in the Week of Respect.

Adessium Foundation supports the Week of Respect project in order to contribute to an inclusive society by investing in the social emotional development of young people, starting in the classroom.

About this partner

For over twelve years, REF has been supporting teachers in creating safe and rewarding learning environments where every child can be who he or she wants to be and develop their full potential.
To achieve its mission, REF works on social inclusion in-service trainings for teachers and school management, develops free (online) lesson materials and organizes the annual national Week of Respect campaign.

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