Slovakia for all

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The Blue House – a public house in Petržalka, Bratislava owned privately is intended to be pulled down. It’s still inhabited by a few families though. Neither town district nor developer seem to care and help the residents who face the danger of becoming homeless. A civic association Street Youth tries to solve the situation, however it runs into unwillingness to cooperate and ignorance of competent.

Publishing the case of The Blue House in a daily SME is a part of Petit Academy’s project Slovakia For All realized with a cooperation of a publisher Petit Press. The aim of the project is to control public institutions, increase the awareness of real public sources use and breaking of basic democratic rules like equal access to education or labor market.

Integration of Roma communities that have been excluded reaches only slight results. It’s because of ineffective and opaque public sources use as well as state authorities and district offices disinterest to solve the issue. Paradoxically, those that are called responsible for the issue publicly are Roma people.

Last but not least media cover the topic very meagrely repeating to put the settlements and ruined barracks on display. Slovakia For All has been changing that. It works with different topics and goes deeper.

Except of public control and investigation mentioned, the project on the website romovia.sme.sk also brings all kinds of reports about Roma life, their culture and shows successful programs of help and integration that are worth our attention and support. Besides texts you will also find photos and videos here.

Together with that Petit Academy foundation provides an option to actually hear Roma voices. It’s two 3-months internships for university students from Roma communities – Róbert Hamburgbadžo and Monika Komorová. Róbert studies applied economics at Comenius University and Monika is a student of social services and counseling at The Institute of Roma Studies CPU in Nitra. Due to the project rep Ingrid Ďurinová both of the interns brought many interesting topics and information balance to the project. „There are always going to be objections from one part or another if only Roma people or majority try to cover the topic. The tandem we have is ideal. And the traffic also reflects this.“

The project found its audience. An average monthly traffic is more than 40,000 clicks and it’s twice as high if the topic is big. The number of visitors also rises when interns contribute with their atrticles. „We have all the different visitors, Roma themselves including intelligence as well as social majority,“ adds Ingrid Ďurinová.

About the organization Petit Press foundation supports education buildup and applies it to practice, saves cultural values, teaches about cultures and regions, provides multicultural dialogue, exchange of knowledge and experience from abroad and the other way round, increases awareness of a current situation and gives an overview of society and its state. The foundation also organizes educational projects and in addition to that collaborates with teachers and creates exercise books and studying set-out. It was founded by a company Petit Press, a.s. in 2005, which is a publisher of dailies SME, Új Szó, Korzár, weekly magazine The Slovak Spectator, regional weeklies MY and plenty of other titles.

Author: Mirka Grófová 23.09.2015

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