Realities and practices

Multifunctional Settlement Community Center

The representatives of the local community were involved in the process of construction and operation of the site, including  bathroom, laundry, toilets, workshop facilities, a social office within the segregated area, aimed to alleviate infrastructure deficits and on the inhuman conditions.

Debt Management

Through work organization, by means of which social workers help integrate  people with rental arrears, or where their place of living  is at risk of being forfeited, into employment programs announced by local councils thus providing them with the opportunity to resolve their debts issues.

The value of the raw materials used in the home renovation and the implemented community work is credited to the arrears.

Microcredit - obstacles avoiding practice

It's mostly a sort of crisis management or one-off subsidy granted. In such cases, we endeavor to solve actual problems concerning the health of our students, removing potential obstacles to their appearance at school through family care and support, aiming at resolving identified disadvantages and drawbacks. During the process the family indicates the  problems and we seek to find the adequate solutions for them applying special forms of treatment. The problems may relate to any member of the family.  Because one of the innovative approaches of our program is our keen awareness and understanding of the  Roma socio-cultural situation,  we systematically endeavor to include families and community in our work. We document the requests and within three days we decide on a plan of action based on our  resources and other current incoming requests. We identify the appropriate executive institution and assist the applicant to undertake whatever steps may be required to  apply for a subsidy; we can also contribute financially in some ways, so that he can get to the right supplier. When necessary we ourselves procure or pay for shortages to meet the most urgent needs. Getting these subsidies enables the families to ensure that their children can attend the Stúdió (no problem with material issues such as lack of clothing, etc.), and also enables the families themselves to join the events and participate in the community work.

Microcredit - trust program

(In progress...) Provided the person to whom the subsidy is granted opens a bank account with the purpose of making savings to cover costs related to the further education of a child involved in our program and the full amount, the monetary value of the one-off subsidy granted appears on the said bank account, the Foundation will contribute to it with 20%. The subsidies are  paid in kind not in cash. The family receives a copy of the invoice, so they know exactly the amount they have to pay to their savings account after the aid is given within a certain time limit, which they have committed to in advance. When the balance in the bank account into which the family pays reaches the amount of the aid granted, the Foundation contributes to the grant an additional 20%. Thus, the greater the support, the greater the chance for significant savings. This way, concerning the basic expenditures, the family’s financial condition gets stabilized in a short term, while the real chance of financing the further education of the children increases. The program thus provides an exponentially increasing opportunity and incentive for both short-term and long-term emergence from poverty.

Film and media workshop of the You Belong! Foundation

Roma and non-Roma young people, with the help of voluntary mentoring artists, made a film with joint efforts and documented the filmmaking process in the form of a film and photos. With this first of its kind scenario (title: The Blindness of Sounds) we've won a tender authorizing us to film the movie. The completed artwork has been presented by the participants themselves at the International Film Festival of Hungary, and thereafter in many places including cinemas and schools; it has also been screened in front of large communities within the framework of interactive, exciting encounters. At the unconventional presentations of the film and media workshops, young Roma people participating in the program acquaint the audience with what is happening in the Creative Center in Ózd, in the Studio, in the camps, at the sessions of the surrounding segregated areas and last, but not least, what is happening inside themselves.

Settlement creative camps

These camps have been held in the settlement of Hétes for eight years. The creative camps formed the basis of the creation oriented pilot program. The camps provided a proper background for long-term cooperation between Roma and non-Roma young people; both sides could convince themselves that with joint efforts a way forward can be found even from the most hopeless situations. We've laid the foundations for future cooperation with the local people. They became more open to establishing a longer-term and more personal relationship with volunteers participating in the pilot program.

The joint programs started working. Interest towards each other's work  was generated.

Facilities for play were provided; we have taught children who have been deprived even from the opportunities of basic socialization, how to use assets, how to apply the method of creative learning. Their human dignity has been strengthened.

They have understood and realized their potential. Works of art have been created, which they could be proud of and which  helped to build their self esteem.

Facebook blogs and photo galleries: First of all, the personal inward presentation of the programs by the students makes our work transparent. The authors of the photographs and the texts become active players in the social media.

Creative Center

The so called  Creative Center which is the intersection point of the segregated areas and the consolidated city  districts  is a public, cultural and methodological center housing in parallel the training program. It provides intercultural programs for local communities. This is a place where different cultures and social groups can meet and interchange ideas in an integrated manner through a variety of cultural programs.

‘Little Gardens’ program in the segregated area

This comprises well organized gardening followed by observation in certain environments and family houses where there has never been any tradition of this.

Development of public spaces

In many cases, these comprise well-functioning  community programs, which require low-input but are creation oriented practices such as cleaning up the environment, forming public spaces with aesthetic design, establishing places suitable for creative work.

Social work and patronage system of the settlement

The presence of creative social workers in the program, who live with the community and deal personally with the families and the young people.