Last week I have attended to a very interesting conference in Budapest. United, the organization that organized it, is a network of 560 anti-fascist and anti-racist organizations from more than 46 countries. Before I even arrived I was already overwhelmed with all the information that United provided us with: Guides on what to bring, tips to work on issues on the work groups, “how to get there” guide that made easier to get to the conference, several e-mails with other general information…
When I got there 4 volunteers were kindly helping to register the 90 participants that were arriving to the hostel and before going for the classical welcome dinner we were chating in the hostel. After that and after resting of my 7 hour-trip the conference started. Lecturers were experienced activists in topics related to anti-racism and anti-fascism: Some of them were working as lawyers to denounce the situation of the Roma population and their discrimination in the school system, some were working with football asociations to kick racism out of the stadiums (“show racism the red card” was one of their campaings) and also we could listen from one member of OSCE about the situation in the Balkans. I also discovered that the situation in many countries around Europe is alarming (growing of extreme right-wing) and it reminded me of the situation in Andalusia during the 90′s, when there were many nazi agressions and when activists from Youth Against Racism in Europe covered with paint the nazi graffitis all over my city.
Later on we formed the work groups. Mine was called “In-side-out: Migrants and Society in Europe”. There we were professionals and volunteers with experience dealing with migrant workers, refugees, and asylum seekers. I enjoyed being with such interesting people and learning from them. They were also very interested on my (never-starting and never-ending) project of the documentary about the situation of the refugees in Serbia. This encouraged me more to try to finish the work on time and do a nice movie to show my colleagues from United the next time I meet them.
Finally, after 5 days of conferences we had time to go to Budapest and, besides having a really bad weather, we enjoyed our last hours in Hungary. I would like to go back again and see a sunny Budapest and I will probably do.