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Local roundtable 4 – Podgorica, Montenegro

1. Date and place: 4th October 2015, REF head office and center, Podgorica
Time: 10:00 – 11:00
2. The participating institutions were:
NVO Romski savjet (Roma Council)
NVO Most (Bridge)
Romski obrazovni fond
Udruzenje Početak (Beginning)

3. Facilitator: Marijana Blecic

4. Course of the meeting and its conclusions

  • Short Introduction to the Literacy Cubed program in Konik camp;
  • Ms Blecic introduced the ongoing activities to representatives of the local Roma NGOs from the camp and from the area;
  • Roma NGO activists experience in work on support programs spans from 1 to 5 years approximately
  • Several participants were familiar with the program through their communication with the community and PCMNE;
  • Activities were generally praised. Representatives of NGO Most expressed their worriedness that most of the documents similar to the idea of Local strategy tend to look for percentages of goal completion rather than the quality provision of services.
  • Participants mentioned a couple of more Roma NGOs which were recently established and worth of attention: NGO MLADI ROMI (Young Roma) in the first place.
  • Participants also mentioned that the education system is doing well compared to others and that the main problem for implementing a change will be social (welfare) aspect.
  • Ms Blecic mentioned goals of the Policy Brief and Local strategies, and involvement of the NGO KRUG coalition.

Local roundtable 3 – Podgorica, Montenegro

1. Date and place: 17th June 2015, Institute for public health of Montenegro; Time: 15:00 – 16:00
2. Date and place: 18h June 2015, Children Clinical Center; Time: 14:00 – 15:00
Facilitated by Danilo Lekovic. Hosted by Dr Darinka Markovic and dr Bojana Vujovic.

Given the fact that it was hard to gather relevant health workers in a joint event, LIT3 team decided to make consultations and awareness raising meeting with two important institutions by visiting their specialists in health, hygiene and counselling services.
Both Dr Markovic from the Institute and Dr Vujovic were informed about the project and its expected outcomes and the importance of informedness of their key institutions in regard to promoting healthy living practices as a prerequisite for quality development of children form vulnerable groups.
Both of them promised their support in sharing the project results through various channels of communication and offered additional support in similar endeavours.

Local roundtable 2 – Podgorica, Montenegro

The participants in the second roundtable in Montenegro, held on the 12th of May 2015 at the Elementary School BVP (Konik area, Podgorica, Montenegro) , were 21 teachers wishing to hear more about the FLP.

The talking points included: introduction to the literacy programmes in Konik camp, the LIT3 project (project description), the piloting experiences of the family literacy programme during summer 2014 and the goals of the policy brief and the local strategy.

Discussions focused on the role of the teachers in promoting FLP in Montenegro.

For more information, please read the report.

Local roundtable 1 – Niksic, Montenegro

The participants in the first roundtable in Montenegro, held on the 11th of May 2015, were 22 students from the Department of Pedagogy – Faculty of Philosophy, Niksic, Montenegro.

The talking points included: introduction to the literacy programmes in Konik camp, the LIT3 project (project description), the piloting experiences of the family literacy programme during summer 2014 and the goals of the policy brief and the local strategy.

Discussions focused on the role of the students/ future educators in promoting FLP in Montenegro.

For more information, please read the Report – roundtable 1-MNE.

Local roundtable 5 in Cluj-Napoca, Romania

The participants in the fifth roundtable in Cluj-Napoca, held on the 19th of May 2015, were 56 medical students and their professor from the Iuliu Hatieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Cluj-Napoca.

The participants received a printout of the ppt presentation tailored to the profile of the audience (freshmen medical students).
The roundtable included:

  • an interactive presentation of the project and of the policy brief, with focus on health literacy as part of family literacy as conceptualised in LIT3.
  • discussions around the questioned posed on the last slide – what can medical students/ future doctors do to promote and implement family & health literacy in disadvantaged Roma communities?

Some of the major ideas contributed:

  • Doctors can treat patients pro bono;
  • GPs can speak with adults from poor communities in a language that is accessible to them;
  • GPs especially but also paediatricians should treat all patients with respect (some mediatized cases of malpractice were brought up and analysed);
  • Prejudices / generalisations should be avoided;
  • Students can volunteer to teach children to read.

Most of the discussions centred on the students’ perception of Roma and low socio-economic status families. They came across as willing to engage in discussions and appreciative of the importance of both family literacy (including health literacy) and local action to promote literacy in disadvantaged communities.

The report is available here.

masa rotunda UMF 1

Local roundtable 4 in Dolný Kubín, Slovakia

Roma education specialists from Prešov, Michalovce, Bratislava, Martin, and Dolný Kubín
Date: May 15, 2015 at 11:00 am

Present: 8 Roma education specialists

A ppt presentation containing the main outcomes and pictures of the family literacy program was presented to the participants.

The discussion began with sharing of some recent experiences of the participants.
Then the discussion was held around involving Roma parents and grandparents in the care for their children. They think that we need to wait about 5 more years, and hope that we will collect the fruits of our work in this field.

Cooperation with Roma families has to be based first of all on trust and personal contacts. Only 2-3 persons can change in a time (not everybody in the settlement), and these persons can be models for the others and help to change them. We cannot expect that we can change everybody at a time or through one project, because it will demotivate.
Roma families need to know us, trust us, and be very motivated.

Some of the participants agreed to contribute to the development of the local strategy.

Local roundtable 4 in Cluj-Napoca, Romania

The participants in the fourth roundtable in Cluj-Napoca, held on the 9th of May 2015, were 6 teachers from Cluj-Napoca and Sibiu.

The participants received a folder containing the flyer of the project and the policy brief in Romanian.
The roundtable started with a short PowerPoint presentation of the project delivered by Maria Kovacs. The concepts of family literacy and policy brief were also discussed to make sure that the teachers can engage in the discussion effectively. Then the participants read the policy brief and were asked to comment on it.

Some of the major ideas contributed was that the church (in general, not a specific one) could be a good place to try and attract families to family literacy programmes (FLP). Others pointed out that local libraries, and specifically the neighbourhood libraries in Cluj-Napoca could be a good venue for such FLPs. Volunteers would be needed in both cases. Teachers specifically could contribute – according to the participants – as collaborators in partnerships between the schools and the parents after they learn how to deliver the FLP. In addition, the schools’ action plans generally have actions that target improving school-community relations, so this FLP would be a good way to achieve that. The school management could facilitate the process, and the school premises would be used as a venue. The teachers could volunteer to deliver the FLP.
The participants also suggested that the programme could be extended to families with younger children (not just primary school aged ones) and other than Roma families could also be targeted, as the need exists in mainstream families as well.

For more information, please read the report.

 

Local roundtable 3 in Cluj-Napoca, Romania

The participants in the third roundtable in Cluj-Napoca, held on the 9th of May 2015, were 8 students from Babes-Bolyai University, Faculty of Political Sciences and Public Administration, Cluj-Napoca.

The roundtable participants were given a folder containing the project flyer and the policy brief.
The roundtable started with a short presentation of the project as the context for the development of the policy brief and of the local strategy, delivered by Simona Bernat.
Then the concept of educational policy was discussed to make sure that the students were familiar with and clear about the concept.

After the policy brief was read, the discussions proper started, around the following questions focusing on comprehension of the document, which were written on a flipchart for all to see:

  1. Why do you think the FLP have a higher impact in disadvantaged communities?
  2. What do you think is meant by the early transfer of inequalities?
  3. What measures should be taken to ensure the success of the FLP?
  4. What arguments would you use to convince a decision-maker in the field of economy to support family literacy?

In the end, the discussions focused on the role that the students could play in promoting FL.
Ideas and suggestions made by the participants were recorded (available in Romanian, see the report on Roundtable 3).

Local roundtable 3 in Dolný Kubín, Slovakia

Center of Pedagogic and Psychologic Consultancy and Prevention at Dolný Kubín
Date: May 6, 2015 at 1:00 pm

Present: 2 workers: the Psychologist and Special Pedagogue

A ppt presentation containing the main outcomes and pictures of the family literacy program was presented to the participants.

The discussion was held around involving of Roma parents in the care for their children. Their experiences are not very good. They think that although the parents say that they care about the education of their children, they do very little for it. They admit, however, that Roma mothers are usually very young and they begin to care about education later. This is why involving grandparents makes sence.

It is hard to work systematically with Roma families. They often observe, that when parents send their child to specialists, it is because the specialists want it, not them. Roma parents expect, that the specialist will help children and that they do not have to do anything.

However, it is good that Roma minority seems to be quire well included in the majority in Dolný Kubín. This is thanks to a good care of the town authorities.

The meeting ended with agreement to contribute to the local strategy.

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Local roundtable 2 in Dolný Kubín, Slovakia

Peter Skrabak Primary School at Dolný Kubín
Date: May 4, 2015 at 1:30 pm

Present: 4 teachers of Roma students (grades 1-5)

A ppt presentation containing the main outcomes and pictures of the family literacy program was presented to the teachers at the beginning. The term of „family literacy“ was briefly clarified and explained.

The discussion began with each teacher sharing their experiences with teacher-parents cooperation. According to the teachers, the cooperation is generally good and the parents are very respectful. Sometimes also grandparents participate at school events and meetings. According to their experiences, it is most effective when they directly address particular parents with particular tasks. However, they never organize any events just for Roma families. They do not select them.

The meeting ended with agreement to contribute to the local strategy.

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