Education and research, Social inclusion

All Equal Under the Sun shortlist

Fostering equal opportunities and participation of the Roma in a Hungarian village


Who is behind this?

Erzsébet Emese Nagy

Működők Egyesület ("Active Association")


Who is joining forces?

Idetartozunk Egyesület ("We Belong Here Association")


Partners Hungary Foundation



Idea pitch

Roma people in the village of Napkor can only break the cycle of poverty through getting a quality education for their kids. It is crucial for them to learn to get their voice heard. Our objectives are the following: to develop the capacity of the Roma community to participate, to build bridges between them and local institutions and to help them develop their kids. To that end, we have an idea of a complex project that includes learning through skill development as well as acts of cooperation.

Where will your project idea take place?

Napkor, East Hungary

What is the specific societal challenge faced by this region?

In the small Hungarian village of Napkor a community of Roma families are vulnerable in many ways and suffering a lot from poverty and lack of opportunities. Their children’s only way out is access to quality education. However a threat of segregation is imminent and after COVID-19 Roma children are rapidly cumulating disadvantages. Access to healthcare is a problem too, since many of the Roma do not even have a social security card. There is a lack of dialogue and cooperation between the local institutions and the Roma members of the community, a situation in which Roma citizens are powerless and not in any position to negotiate for their interests.

Who are you doing it for?

Napkor (its name means "age of the sun") is a village in Szabolcs-Szatmar-Bereg County with 3665 inhabitants with approximately 10 % Roma. Our key target groups are the Roma families (especially parents and children) and the teachers who work with them. We are also going to involve representatives of local institutions such as the local government, the Church, the school and the kindergarten.
We are going to work very closely with two Roma intercultural mediators who we will train and who will serve as local coordinators. We have already selected them based on their competences and motivation.

How do you plan to get there?

Firstly,we will train two Roma intercultural mediators to help facilitate the project as local coordinators. Then we will visit the target groups to involve them. After that we will prepare the Roma members of the community by providing them trainings in communications, advocacy, conflict resolution and negotiation skills. Then we will organise a series of roundtables where different actors of the community, both Roma and non-Roma will sit down together. They will create a map of common problems, come up with a solution to one of these problems - most likely in the field of education or health care- and solve it as a mini project. Tasks of the action will be divided among members of the roundtables and there will be an ongoing online and offline communication about the progress. The work will be coordinated by the mediators. To strengthen cooperation of parents and teachers, we will also implement the HSCL scheme. We will hold an introductory workshop and two trainings of the method for teachers and parents. Then parents will hold classes for the students with the help of the teachers in the school and in the kindergarten. To help kindergarten-school transition of Roma children kindergarten teachers will hold workshops to teach parents methods they can use to develop their child at home and pass on to other parents. In the end we will write down our experiences in a handbook.

What are the expected results?

After the project, the connection between the 360 members of the Roma community and the local government and institutions will be much improved and based on understanding and partnership. We expect that the Roma citizens will be empowered to actively participate in solving common problems and gain a good negotiation position. Local policymakers will be ready to involve the Roma since they learned to regard them as people who can act in their best interest. We will evaluate the project with the Most Significant Change method as well as a final evaluation roundtable where participants will analyse the results of the common action together. We will involve 50 Roma parents as participants in HSCL and about 120 parents in developmental workshops directly and the whole Roma community indirectly.

How does your idea strengthen active citizenship at a local and community level?

We are going to use facilitated roundtables to have different actors of the community such as the principals of the school and the kindergarten, the notary, the priest, the representative of the Roma self-government, members of the Roma community from all age groups sit down and work together on common problems. We will motivate the stakeholders to participate by having them understand that they will be treated as partners in resolving issues that concern them.We will also provide trainings for the Roma community to build their capacity for getting their voice heard.We are also going to use the Home School Community Liaison (HSCL) scheme to promote partnership between parents and teachers. It involves parents as regular facilitators in the classroom based on their skills/interests.

Why is this idea important to you?

Alex Karoly Joni: He is a Roma young professional who believes in the necessity of a dialogue between the Roma and the institutions. He would like to widely disseminate the methodology and the results.
Renata Nagy Jonine: She is the first Roma kindergarten teacher in Napkor with a degree. She is highly committed to develop Roma kids so that they can start school with equal chances to succeed as their non-Roma peers.
Emese Erzsebet Nagy: It is very important for her to avoid segregation in Napkor. She believes that the Roma can only break the cycle of poverty by getting a quality education.
Julia Vida: She is an educational professional. She believes that society should provide equal chances for everyone to succeed in life and common issues should be resolved by people as partners.

€ 34594,-

Total budget

€ 34594,-

Funding requested from Civic Europe

Major expenses

staff costs: 8760 €
communications: 1000 €
workshop materials: 768 €
workshop leaders fees (kindergaterten and school teachers): 4656 €
catering for events: 840
round table facilitation: 1030 €
mini project: 1950 €
trainer fees: 2200 €
methodolgy licenses: 1500 €
handbook of experiences: 500€
travel fees 700€
office costs: 600€
fee for school and kindergarten mediators: 7440€
digital tools (laptops and camera): 1400€
MSC: 600€
room rental for events: 550€
local admin:100€

What do you need from the Civic Europe community?

Please let us know which parts of our idea you consider strong and any detail you think we should further develop.


Nagy Erzsébet Emese

Idea created on April 12, 2021
Last edit on April 20, 2021

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