Missing Piece Foundation (Hiányzó Láncszem Alapítvány)
The two camps of romas and hungarians in Gagybátor are facing a new setup with their recently elected roma mayor, wanting to take charge of their village’s life but lacking the experience, knowledge, skills and information for effective cooperation and action. We aim to support the mayor and local leaders in their formal and informal role as community builders through various facilitated individual and group focused processes to elevate the community’s capacity for consensus.
Gagybátor village, Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén county, Hungary
Since the local elections in fall 2019 a new setup is present in the micro region of Gagybátor: more and more villages and cities have roma elected leaders, giving the minority of the romas more power and opportunities than before. In these villages the two camps of romas and hungarians have a lot of accumulated conflict and are missing knowledge of each other and acknowledgement and respect of each other. Our aim is to support their community to be able to see each other with respect and join forces to act on their common interest.
Supporting the mayor and local leaders in their formal and informal community building roles we aim to hold space for the villagers to connect to each other and discover where and how they have common interest and what they want to do about it, making it possible for them living together, reconstructing and using the public spaces respectfully.
The village of Gagybátor has 215 members, roughly half of them romas. Children are born only in the roma families, who are struggling with their living and don’t themselves have schooling and knowledge to support their children in learning. We aim to facilitate group activities for children to foster their soft skills development and reduce their fallback, for their parents to assist them in parenting and schooling the children. The hungarian villagers are aging and have their loneliness and fears of the future as center of their problems. We aim to support the adults of the village to be able to connect to themselves, their neighbours and and act together upon their common issues.
We start our conversations by listening and searching for what is already present in the community’s reality as values, wants, needs, efforts and capacity to act. We assist them in their practical everyday issues with expert knowledge, skills, information and asstets. The two main areas of focus are the village’s physical space and the lived and shared identity of villagers when celebrating holidays. We generate discussions to develop timelines of action, defining roles and responsibilities of participants, lists of supplies necessary for the planting of flowers and organising of feasts.
The community of Gagybátor will have a lived experience of a structured way to reach consensus that they are able to apply to other topics and aspects of their village’s life and they choose to make decisions that way, share ideas with each other, have fruitful debates even when political elections are on the agenda.
The mayor of the village is able to share and advocate their way of decision making to other mayors in their micro region.
The lack of debate culture, respectful discussions of everyday life in wider community and lack of acknowledgement of divesity all are at the roots of the dominance of populist politics. By strengthening a small community in their skills and helping them gain experince in these aspects of citizenship we aim to build an activitiy based model for communities.
Feeling concerned about the rise of inequality and polarisation in our society we find ourselves moved by our discovery how our work based on mutual respect can enable the spontaneous and organic advancement. Our team’s local participants feel the need to use their new authority to drive their community towards progress.
Funding requested from Civic Europe
Travel cost 1,000 EUR
Garden expert consulting 2,000 EUR
Garden goods 4,300 EUR
Village celebrations consulting 6,800 EUR
Creative goods 2,800 EUR
Event catering 4,200 EUR
Process workshops 2,500 EUR
Fascilitartor expert fee 8,200 EUR
Accommodation 4,200 EUR
Could we aim for more specific outcomes as an impact?