Cultural education programme for Roma children and young people in Slovenia

Alongside our local partner organisation, DRPDNM, we will deliver a cultural and artistic education programme for over 100 socially excluded Roma children and young people in Slovenia.

Cultural and education programme for over 100 Roma children and young people

We are excited to be working with a local organisation in Slovenia called the Organization for the Development of Voluntary Work Novo Mesto (DRPDNM).

Slovenia is a relatively small country with a high life expectancy, education and per capita income. But despite this, socio-economic inequality means that minority groups, such as the Roma population, experience multiple forms of discrimination. It is estimated that there could be at least 10,000 Roma in Slovenia, about one third of whom live in the Dolenjska region where our project will be based, in the town of Novo Mesto.

Our project in Slovenia will deliver a cultural and artistic education programme for over 100 socially excluded Roma children and young people through our partner’s two pre-existing Daily Centres for Roma Children, which provide informal and supplementary education five days a week.

We believe an improved approach to knowledge and skills is crucial for the progress of the Roma community, so we will encourage the development of children’s and young people’s imagination, creativity, initiative, innovation and tolerance, which will enable personal development and raise participants’ self-belief.

The programme includes 60 performing arts workshops (dance, theatre and puppetry) and 20 cultural and art workshops and visits. “The Happy Day Event” in June 2019 will showcase the performing arts skills of participants and raise awareness of Roma culture and rights among the wider public in Novo Mesto.

As a result, Roma children and young people will increase their confidence and self-esteem and have an improved school attendance. The project will also strengthen links between the Roma and the wider community and contribute towards improved social inclusion.

The impact will create long-lasting change, as the young people will pass on their newly acquired knowledge to other people in their community, inspiring change. This will give younger generations hope and also inspire them to continue their education too.

The Roma population are excluded in all areas of life and face higher risks of poverty, unemployment and low literacy and vocational skills – with very few adults having completed primary school. They are also one of the communities most exposed to discrimination on the grounds of ethnic origin.