A friend of mine tried for years to get a job but the employers kept turning her down because somebody said that she was gay. They didn't even know it for sure. They destroyed a person's life in order to satisfy their own stupidity and ignorance. One day she decided that she couldn't take it any more and killed herself.
She was 22 years old.

Themis, 16 years, Cyprus

Session 9.5



This activity based on case study situations is about planning for peer group education. This will allow the group to start thinking about barriers or difficulties which can occur during their projects.


• Case studies

• Copy of the 'Step by Step' check-list (8.5)


2.5 hour

Group size

15 - 25 people


After an introduction and short discussion about different settings within which peer group education can take place split the group into smaller groups. Each group should work with one of the six case studies which refer to different situations some are for projects taking place in school or educational institutions and some in grass roots projects coming from young people themselves. These can be rewritten based on local situations relating to intolerance.

Each working group will need a copy of the 'Step by Step' questions which they should address: These can be adapted for example if the group need to address particular aspects like finance or the role of the coach in more detail. Each working group should plan a short presentation to share their thoughts, feelings and discussions about the situation. You should stress that their discussions should focus on peer group education as the method.

Case studies

Formal/In school case study 1

You are a teacher, in your class of 25, there are 8 new pupils who have come as refugees. They have joined your class in the past year. Recently there have been problems in the school playground, the indigenous pupils harass, mob and tease the newcomers, the new pupils in defence start to react aggressively, engaging in fist fights. Although there haven't been any violent incidents yet you are concerned that there will be. You would like to launch a peer group education programme to deal with this situation.


Formal/In school case study 2

You are in a school where they have a ninth grade class with a majority of immigrants. Lately there have been several feuds between the immigrants and the other students. You feel the situation is getting worse and decide to try and solve this problem. You are also an immigrant, but you have not taken part in the feuds. You would like to create a positive role model for the restless immigrants who don't feel welcome. You contact your teacher for help and guidance in setting up a peer group education programme in your school.


Informal settings/Out of school, case study 3

You are a worker in a youth centre. Nearby a Gypsy camp site is located and for a number of months every year Gypsy youth come to use your centre. This creates friction between them and the young people who use the club all year round. Each group tries to mark territory against the other one with the intention of taking over the youth centre. Some of the young people come to you and say that they are tired of this conflict and would like to make some steps towards a more peaceful situation. You suggest that a peer group education project is started at the centre.


Informal settings/Out of school, case study 4

You are a youth worker. After working at the same centre for several years you have developed good working relationships with local young people. In recent weeks you have been working with them on a project about sex education, one of the group has disclosed that he is homosexual. He has declared this to his close friends. Some have told the rest of the young people and now they are making jokes and 'freezing him out' of the group. Approximately 1/3 of the members want to set up a peer group education program to educate the others about homophobia. They approach you for help.


Grass roots, case study 5

You are a young person, your local community has a Jewish Cemetery which recently has been vandalised, some of the buildings and memorials have been painted on and smashed. You feel very bad about this and suspect that young people are responsible for the damage, you would like to plan some work which will help young people understand about Jewish history and people. You and your friends have come together to plan a peer group education programme for other young people.


Grass roots, case study 6

You are a young person, you live in a small town where they have just opened a refugee centre. One night a group of your peers attack and vandalize the centre. You feel bad about the situation and decide to take action. You collect a group of your friend together who feel the same way as you do, you decide that your assignment is to create a better understanding between the refugees and the locals.