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2005 / Education

YRAEF – Young Roma Artist Education Fund (2004 – present)

Summary of the School Year 2008/2009
The education program Young Roma Artist Education Fund (YRAEF) aimed at education of children from Roma communities continued successfully last year. The program is implemented for the fifth school year and is a practical proof of successful application of an alternative model of education of Roma children in settlements (the model of a mobile music teacher). The training was attended by 90 pupils from 6 villages and settlements – Kokava nad Rimavicou, Hnúšťa, Klenovec, Poltár, Detva and Rimavské Jánovce.
The alternative education program YRAEF started in 2005. Its objective is to support the potential of the Roma youth, support and motivate Roma pupils to continue their studies on high schools, contribute to eliminate the prejudices of the majority towards the Roma minority and the social isolation of Roma. The main donor of the project since its inception is SPP Foundation. The project in the school year 2008/2009 focused to prepare the pupils to continue their studies and regular year-round classes for the talented children from lower grades, who received special individual treatment. Another priority of the project was the quality of the education of the children choir and the children band.
Children Band YRAEF from Klenovec (6 children)
In 2007, the band took the second place on a nationwide competition of young folk bands. This band is very popular and often invited to perform on various local cultural events. During the last school year, it performed on several important events (Gypsy Spirit in Slovak Radio in Bratislava, Balval Fest in Kokava nad Rimavicou).
Children Choir YRAEF (30 children)
The choir performs on various events regularly.
As a part of the project, a workshop lead by singing professor Sarah Meredith of University of Wisconsin – Green Bay (USA) was carried out successfully. The workshop aimed to support the personal potential of music teachers and the development of their practical knowledge of music theory and education.
We thank the SPP Foundation, Allen & Overy and International Women Club for supporting Young Roma Artist Education Fund during the school year 2008/2009.
Activity Report, 1.9.2005 – 31.7. 2006, Slovakia
The YRAEF Fund officially commenced its operation on 1st September 2005. The aim of the Fund is to support the potential of Roma youth, to show them the value of education, to support and motivate Roma pupils to continue their studies at secondary schools, to contribute to elimination of prejudice of the majority society towards the Roma minority and social isolation of Roma.
Since 2003, Association for Culture, Education and Communication /ACEC/ has been running a project Rómovia pre spoločnosť (Roma for the Society), which is targeted at the area of education and edification in the area of healthcare.
When operating the activity of the YRAEF Fund, we utilized existing structures of ACEC in the terrain, all of them in villages with a majority Roma population in the Eastern-Slovak county. In order to fulfill the mission of the Fund, the following villages showed to be the most suitable: Krížová Ves, Podhorany, Stráne pod Tatrami and Jurské.
Since October 2004, preparations for realization of the YRAEF project were taking place – statutes of the Fund, system of cooperation, selection of Roma teachers. The Board of Directors of the Fund had one requirement for selection of teachers in terrain – having musical education and passing series of communication trainings focused on community development.
In January 2005, 7 candidates were moved to the next round, and 4 of them were definitely chosen, and two of those /Anton Klempár and Anton Mirga/ were participating in preparation of suitable conditions, necessary for the project to start /agreements with the local government, a notice of Fund’s operation start in 9 villages, coordination of dates of selection processes in the individual villages, preparation of the timetable of classes, preparation of teaching schemes, etc./.
Selection processes of the potential pupils of music classes were taking place in August, September and October 2005. In total, 168 children took part in the selection processes. Four Roma teachers, a representatives of ACEC were present.
Special thanks goes to the British Embassy and Margaret Ozanne for supporting the YRAEF (Young Roma Education Fund) by donating a violin to YRAEF students and organizing a beneficial concert where money for YRAEF project were collected.
We would like to express our sincere thanks to International Women Club for the support of the project YRAEF .