The Migrant Objective
Duration of the project: May and June 2015
Project executor: Serbian Cultural Centre Danilo Kiš
The project is financed by: The European Union through the European Fund for the Integration of Third-Country Nationals and the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Slovenia
The project goal is awakening the public and strengthening the role and position of migrants through different activities. Two complementary approaches will be used, which will help in achieving social integration of immigrants as a two-way process of mutual adjustment of third-country nationals and general public and thus contribute to a more efficient integration of immigrants into the new surroundings.
Through a series of photography workshops, setting up internet photo galleries created by the participants and exhibiting photographs made during the programme, the project will help in raising self-confidence, encouragement of creativity, increasing social skills and entrepreneurship of third-country nationals. The programme participants will learn how to use a camera and acquire basic knowledge and skills necessary for individual photographic work, photographic processing and website promotion. With the support, mentorship and training provided by third-country nationals (mostly the young, women and the elderly), photography might become a way of expression, entertainment, companionship or even making profit. By staging the exhibition, where photographic illustrations of the city from the perspective of third-country nationals, as well as their personal migrant experciences will be shown, the project will present migrants to the public in a new light, as individuals who shape the space they live in and constitute its integral part and thus contribute to the decrease of stereotypes connected to migrants.
The photography workshops will be run by Igor Kupljenik, an expert in photojournalism, a longtime associate of the German EPA (European Press Agency) and Slovenian F.A. Bobo and the founder of the Mi-Press News Agency, who had himself come to Ljubljana because of the war in Bosnia in 1994.
Specific objectives of the programme:
- Training the target groups representatives in using simple and free digital and Internet services, which will help them in defining their own postition, as well as their position within cultural and social activism
- Encouraging the target groups members in presenting their problems of integration and migration from their own perspective and thus share their perception and reality of everyday life
- Promoting the creativity of target groups members
- Raising target groups members self-confidence about the importance of their culture, which is becoming a part of Slovenian culture
- Making target groups representatives digitally literate, which may lead to increase in employment opportunities (especially for the elderly, who have little or no experience in using digital media – lifelong learning)
- Innovative and creative way of evaluating the position of migrants within the Slovenian society. It is important for the migrants from the countries of former Yugoslavia in terms of critical reconsideration and reevaluation of thus far neglected connections with Slovenia or the ones interpreted in simplified manner
- Raising public awareness on problems of integration and creating a new public image of migrant communities, instead of the existing and mainstream stereotypes
- Encouragement of mutual understanding between the majority population and migrant groups, as well as raising awareness on equal opportunities
- Inclusion of general public into the dialogue on migration and integration
- Improvement of migrant communities’ visibility and quality during the project implementation period
- Sensibilsation of public discourse sphere to migrant communities and interconnections of different migrant groups
- Younger third-country migrants, who are more flexible and opened to integration process than their parents or older compatriots, while also aspiring higher, striving for material success. They are aware of their deprivation and social-economic inequality and have difficulties in getting employment due to migrant prejudices and lack of social networks.
- Older immigrants who have been especially exposed to negative concequences of social exclusion, such as depression and loneliness, sense of isolation and alienation from the society they live in, due to social and material deprivation, as well as numerous prejudices of majority population.
- Migrants from the former Yugoslav countries which are referred to as being of lower social status, criminal and violent behaviour and lazy. Cultural differences are treated as deviations- “primitivism and residual bad habits”, while social dimensions of ethnic relations are being interpreted in the context of inherited cultural characteristics. On the other side, migrants from the former Yugoslav countries are often traditionally oriented, burdened with self-interpretations and stereotypes coming from the former Yugoslav historical context and simplified interpretations of bonds with Slovenia.
- Migrant women who are subject to stratified subordination: marginalisation due to their origins and gender marginalisation.