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Free training opportunity for Roma activists – building communications and influencing skills (apply now, limited spaces)

From: Juliana Bell | Programme Delivery Manager of the Metropolitan Migration Foundation

Dear All,

Following some of the findings of our three year funding programme for the Roma Community, including feedback from a number of grantees and other Roma activists, the Metropolitan Migration Foundation is very pleased to announce we are working with On Road Media and iMiX to support Roma activists to build communication and influencing skills. This involves a free, day-long Engaging with the Media training course, which will be designed and delivered by On Road and media activists from the Roma community. The programme is delivered in partnership with IMiX, who will provide follow up support for the Roma activists that take part.

I am getting in touch with you today to offer you the opportunity to take part and ask whether you (or a colleague) would be interested in attending this course.

The media training course is especially designed to suit community activists with self-care and support as a foundation of the learning. Media skills and confidence-building in speaking to journalists is given equal weight to self-care and setting boundaries. It will cover ways of working with journalists in positive ways, developing long lasting relationships.

The Metropolitan Migration Foundation is bringing together a group of up to 10 people from the Roma community to take part in the Engaging with the Media course and access follow up support. To ensure that a range of experiences are represented in the programme, this group will be made up from people of different ages, places of birth, gender, sexuality, faiths, and location. Due to the limited numbers and the need to represent a number of experiences, it’s possible that not everyone interested will be able participate.

If you are interested, please consider the below questions before you make a decision. If you can answer “yes” to all of these questions, then the course could be the right fit for you:

  • Are you available for the training (all day on Wednesday 19th September) and the follow up support?
  • Some people feel very negative feelings when thinking about doing media work, and feel nervous, worried, or angry with journalists. Negative feelings towards the media are perfectly fine, but if this is mostly how you feel, participating in the programme might not be the right fit for you at this time. Working with the media can also make some people feel excited, positive, and despite their nerves, really up for engaging with journalists. Do you feel this way too?
  • Do you feel well in yourself?
  • Change in the media doesn’t happen overnight, and it can take many conversations / appearances on a programme for improved coverage. Do you feel okay about that?

What you need to know:

Date: Wednesday 19 September, 10.00-17.30 (including breakfast between 10.00-10.30am)

Location: Central London (tbc)

Networking dinner: we will also be offering a networking dinner for all participants after the training session (details tbc).

Further information: Refreshments and lunch will be provided, we will pay for your travel costs and we may be able to offer hotel accommodation for those travelling from further afield. The follow up support will be offered by IMix, will be tailored to suit your needs and may be done via Skype.

To apply:

Please complete a short survey via the following link no later than 20th July 2018. It will take no longer than 5 minutes:

If you prefer to speak through the survey questions via telephone instead, please get in touch with Hebba Nasser ( who will arrange a time to call you.

Please forward this to anyone who may be interested and do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

With my very best wishes,


Juliana Bell | Programme Delivery Manager of the Metropolitan Migration Foundation

t: 07921743783| e:


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Laci sprava po Medzinarodno Romano Dzives!

Ladislav Poles, peskere caha Ladislav he peskere djamutreha Jan Hangurbadzo, puterde e sklepa andro Rotherham, 25 Welgate. Slovenski-Roma katar o Kesmarkos, Poprad, lengeri sklepa spetializinen slovenski producti, na priklad masa palo Slovensko.

Roma Futures (Amaro Budúcnosť) gele (Miroslav Kandrac/Tim Neal) te navstevinel andre sklepa sar o Jan delas pozor pre sklepa. Jov kerel buci kodaj.

Le Miroslav Kandrac has prilezitost te kerel leha roshovoris pal lengeri sklepa.

Ladislav Poles with his son Ladislav and son-in-law Jan Hangurbadzo, Roma from Kezmarok in Slovakia, have opened a food shop at 25 Welgate, Rotherham. The shop specialises in Slovakian food products, for example meat brought directly from Slovakia. Roma Futures went to visit the shop when Yan was looking after it. Miroslav Kandrac took the opportunity to interview Jan about their business.


Greentop’s CircUs! neighbourhood project

Greentop Community Circus based in Grimesthorpe, Sheffield, have worked with the Roma community for several years now offering places for local children in their classes.  Terezia Rostas has been instumental in supporting this work.

Terezia: The community and all the team are very sad that the “CircUs” project came to an end after 18 months.  Greentop circus is applying for more funding for the project to continue, probably from September.  The feedback of the children and of the parents was 100% positive and all children have said that they are looking forward to coming back to the circus.  Terezia: Why is that? Because circus makes them feel fitter, stronger and more confident.

Here is the link to a video the brilliant Flycheese made of Greentop’s CircUs! neighbourhood project. All part of the Circus250 celebrations.


Non Grata

Luník IX Košice Slovakia, 28 June 2013 Photograph Åke Ericson

 Luník IX, Košice, Slovakia, 28 June 2013. Photograph: Åke Ericson

Åke Ericson started photographing the Roma in 2009, and the title of his book, Non Grata (Latin for “not welcome”), speaks volumes about their continuing plight in a Europe that has become less tolerant of outsiders. His project began in Břeclav in the Czech Republic in 2009, and continued into Hungary, Serbia, Kosovo, Romania and Slovakia, where he photographed many of the scattered communities in which an estimated 10-12 million Roma now live.

From the Guardian

25th March by Sean O’Hagan

Gadjo Dilo

A friend of mine, Miroslav, just the other day posted a link to a short scene from a film titled “Gadjo Dilo”. It was a couple of minutes of footage of some Romanian Roma musicians playing and singing in a cafe, a young woman dancing whilst a young man recorded an audio tape of the music. The title means “Crazy Gadjo” or “Nutty Outsider” or some version of saying mad non-Roma person!

The clip was obviously sufficiently appealing to me that I followed a link through to a second clip. This one showed the young man who had been conducting the recording standing next to a fresh grave where an older Roma man wept and danced next to the grave of his friend whilst a young man sang and played the accordion. The older man drank from a bottle of vodka and poured libations on the grave through his tears. The song is called tutti-frutti.

This clearly appealed to me too, the word I’d use is pathos. Or perhaps I just say “duhkal”. Duhkal man o jilo. I say that quite a lot. So I managed to follow links through and find the complete film with English subtitles and I’ve posted the links below.

I’m not at all sure how to speak about this film. I’m not Roma so I don’t know how the representation of Roma feels. I am a Gadjo and I recognise the representation of the Gadjo dream. The Mad Gadjo. The Gadjo in this film is a French person. A young man. “Look at his big teeth!” says one of the Roma children in the film. I’ve got big teeth too and I was once a young man. This particular Gadjo Dilo in the film is looking for a singer, a gypsy singer, a Romanian gypsy singer called Nora Luca.

His father was a traveller the film tells us, his father wandered far and wide spending his time with remote people, recording them playing music and singing. We hear that he died somewhere in the Middle East with the Bedouin. His favourite tape, his favourite voice, his favourite recording was Nora Luca. This voice obviously haunted our young Gadjo Dilo and after his father’s death he set off into rural Romania in search of Nora.

He finds everything except a living Nora. He finds wonderful musicians, fiddle players, a precociously talented young accordionist and singer. He is taken into a Roma village by a man whose son has just been sent to prison. The drunk and mourning father adopts him on the local town square and takes him back home. There he lives, there he learns and there he eventually records music until one day he hears, finally, through tears, Nora Luca singing for him. But the voice comes from the young heroine of the film and she is not Nora Luca.

In a brutal ending to the film the young man buries his search for Nora Luca as his adoptive father had buried and mourned over the open grave of his friend. Tears, a dance and a vodka libation. He learns something of the way of the Roma by learning of their suffering. He can bury his love of Nora Luca as he needs must his father and live with real suffering in the present. And love. Suffering. And love.

So that’s the Gadjo Dilo story of the Roma. Suffering and Love. This Gadjo Dilo and that Gadjo Dilo.

Tim Neal

Roma Futures at the National Roma Network conference.

Terezia Rostas gave a presentation about Roma Futures at the final meeting in London of the National Roma Network.  This took place on 14 December 2017 and the event was titled:   ‘Rights, Equalities and Future Roma Voices’

Here is a link to Terezia’s presentation: roma futures short presentation for Roma Network_ final version

Both Olina Fuseini and Michal Bily both took part in the panel discussion titled: Future Roma Voices in the UK.

Olina Fuseini along with Phil Brown also presented on the topic of: Key policy issues affecting migrant Roma in the UK

Denisa Gannova

Denisa Gannova is a Czech Roma who has graduated with a law degree in England. She joins the 2% of Roma across Europe who have achieved success in higher education in the face of all the challenges they have to face. Denisa is a Vlaxi Roma and she says that her parents are illiterate which makes her graduation even more significant. She has already inspired many on her journey and we wish her all the best in her next chapter of her life.  Here her speak about her experience here.

Peter Pollak visits Sheffield

Report by David Kandrac

Who is Peter Pollak?

He is the first Roma representative in the Slovakian parliament. He works with Roma communities across the Slovakia to fight for their rights and to seek solutions for their needs. Dr. Peter Pollak is in his mid-40s and live in Levoce, Slovakia. He is a Slovakian-Roma. He has an MA in Social Politics and Social Work from UKF Nitra, Slovakia. He also has a PhD from the Catholic University in politics.

peter pollalk

Peter visited Sheffield on the 8th March to meet with local Roma community members.

This visit was made in the context of a major political crisis in Slovakia. The death of a journalist , Jan Kuciak, who had been investigating high-level government corruption has thrown the country into disarray. Robert Fico has been the Prime Minister of Slovakia for the past couple of years. According to Pollak and other politicians, Fico is in cooperation with the Slovakian mafia and he does not like Roma people. Not only that but he is accused of receiving considerable funds to invest into the Roma communities but never doing so. Not only Pollak and Roma communities dislike his approach as PM but there are other protest groups and campaigns against his work and reputation in the parliament.


Pollak came to Sheffield on the 8th of March 2018 to the Firvale Community Hub to meet Roma people living in Sheffield and to demonstrate to Fico that the same Roma people who he dislikes for many reasons are doing well in Sheffield. Many of them are employed or self-employed and some are at University. He stated that people are running away from Slovakia not because they don’t like it but because they do not have a job and a future there. Not only Roma but many other people from minorities leave their families and belongings and end up working hard abroad. While we are working so hard, Fico, Kalinak and other people involved in Slovakian politics are stealing from us and instead of employing Roma residents they employ foreigners.


In the clip below we hear from several local Roma who share their views with Peter Pollak. 

“In Slovakia, we don’t have the rights to obtain a council house until we are in employment”

“We are living here, we are integrated and wanting to work”

“If we return to Slovakia after a year, our children end up in special schools”

“People are saying that Gypsies don’t want to work, and they are not educated. This is because they have excluded our children from the schools and put them into special schools. We did not have the opportunities in Slovakia and now my son is at the University and wanting to study a PhD”.

“Why you think they have killed the journalist, he probably found out something”.

Peter Pollak wrote the following in the introduction to his facebook live video of the meeting in Sheffield:

People run from Slovakia not because they want to, but they don’t have a job and a future. Not just us, Roma, but also a lot of people from majority must leave family, property and toil abroad. While we are creating values for a foreign state, FICO, kaliňák and co. They’re stealing from us. They import the serbs, there’s no work for us.

We are in Britain to show the government, but also to all that still doubt that Roma can work, that if we give our children education and work, they will be successful and Slovakia will return.

I invite everyone to share this video and show the truth to the entire nation.

Thanks for the invitation, Dezider Horvath.

The full video is here.