3rd National Meeting of Roma Forum Romania
The National Meeting of Roma Forum organized by Nevo Parudimos, as a member of ERGO Network in partnership with Romani Criss, took place from 10-11 May in Bucharest.
The theme of the meeting was „The involvement of Roma NGOs for the Romanian Presidency of the EU in 2019”. More than 30 Roma NGOs participated to the meeting and over 60 people were present during the 2 days. In the same time, officials from the National Roma Agency, the National Roma Contact Point, the National Federations of LAGs, representatives of the Roma Education Fund, the Ministry of Employment and the Central European University gave presentations and talked about Roma issues in open and free discussions.
The main discussions focused on the list of several proposals for the Romanian Presidency of the European Union in 2019 in order to be formalized in the public agenda during the Romanian presidency. These proposals refer to the following important areas: school segregation, the mediation process for health and education and forced eviction of the Roma.
“The inclusion of the Roma community was encouraged and evaluated through a system of indicators developed by the ERGO Network”* – a story of success
Our Bulgarian member organisation Integro analysed the Community-Led Local Development (CLLD) process and Roma inclusion therein.
In Bulgaria the implementation of the CLLD in the 2014-2020 programming period started within the Rural Development Program 2014-2020, a successor of the LEADER approach. During the current period, the budget for implementation of local development strategies is significantly higher – so that it is expected that two times more local development strategies will be funded. With the help of ERGO Network’s quality audit tool, Integro analysed Roma integration in local development strategies and local action groups, and identified four steps that are important to take when wanting to improve Roma access to the CLLD programme.
International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, 16 days of activism
On 25 November, ERGO’s Network’s member from Bosnia-Herzegovina OTHARIN started its so-called ’16-days-activism’ campaign, which is run together with the ‘UG Romkinja’ (Roma women) and the ‘Local Voluntary Service’ in Bijeljina.
The first part of the program took place on the 25 November 2016, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, on the city square in Bijeljina.
The participants of the street action wrote messages about the topic of violence against women and asked citizens who passed by to do the same to show their support.
T-Shirts were donated in order to thank those who left their supportive messages. Unfortunately violence against women is increasing again, which makes it even more important to raise public awareness on that topic.
For more news and updates from Bosnia – Herzegovina please click here
Roma Forum Romania
The Second National Meeting of Roma Forum in Romania took place on 18 November 2016 at the InfoEurope Center in Bucharest, organized by Nevo Parudimos, as member of ERGO Network, in partnership with Romani Criss.
The meeting focused on issues of Roma communities in order to increase the capacity-building of Roma grassroots organizations who are members in the Roma Forum, especially in the area of monitoring and advocacy work, together with experienced NGOs such as RomaniCriss and Sastipen;
The discussions focused on the list of proposals for the Romanian Presidency of the European Union in 2019 in order to be formalized in the public agenda during the Romanian presidency. These proposals refer to the following areas: school segregation, the mediation process for health and education and the forced eviction of the Roma.
Marian Mandache (Romani Criss), as an invited speaker of the 1st session, proposed ways of addressing the Roma issues to the future Romanian Government from 2017: bilateral meetings on the main social and economic fields that address Roma, such as sectorial meetings with public ministry representatives to include in their public agenda the Roma issues.
The Roma Forum had about 20 participants of Roma organizations from Romania and some new ones expressed their willingness to join.
As an ERGO member, Nevo Parudimos expresses its commitment to sustain the Roma Forum activities and to develop the capacity of Roma NGOs by exchanging information, solutions and models in order to overcome certain issues.
Also representatives of public authorities, namely the National Roma Agency and Mr. Alexandru Potor from the National Federation of LAGs, participated in the meeting.
Czech NGOs meet with Czech Ministry of Education
Czech Deputy Education Minister Václav Pícl met with representatives of a National Working Group that consists of 11 Romani non-profit organizations from all over the Czech Republic on 3 October in his office at the ministry. “The aim of the meeting is to establish a constructive collaboration between established Romani nonprofit organizations and the Education Ministry. The coalition works with as many as 8 000 Romani people around the country and can be a bridge between the Romani community and the state administration,” said Jelena Silajdži, director of ERGO member Slovo 21.
During the hour-long discussion the specific aims and the fulfilment of the Czech Government’s Romani Integration Strategy were touched upon, as was the insufficient representation of Romani people in advisory positions within the executive branch, the legislature and the state administration, as well as the planned changes to pre-school education next year and scholarship programs for Romani students. The ministry representative was invited to visit the IQ Roma Service organization in Brno to see examples of good practice in the area of preschool education and activation of Romani parents.
The NGOs will continue their discussions with the Education Ministry at their next meeting in December. Representatives of IQ Roma Service, Jekhetane, OSF Praha, ROMEA and Slovo 21 attended the meeting.
Slovo 21, ERGO Network’s member from Czech Republic, is coordinating the work of the coalition through the project “Roma Included”, which is part of ERGO’s Annual Work Program. The project is organized with the financial support of the European Commission’s EaSI program.