www.safesex.bg

  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size
Banner
Общи :: The visual arts as a prevention tool

The visual arts as a prevention tool

Panel"Emi and Ani"
Sofia, March 11 2014

On March 11th, the short animation “Emi and Ani” focused on two serious problems of the marginalized communities – early school dropouts and early marriages and deliveries, was launched at the residency of the British Ambassador in Sofia.

The film was created with the active participation of the Roma communities in Sliven and Shumen.  The drawings were made by the young Roma artist Asen Hristov.  The source of inspiration for the drawings were the children and the families he worked with at the Shumen Family Consulting Centre’s Art workshop – part of UNICEF’s project “A Family for Every Child”. The characters in the film are voiced by Stefka and Fanny from the Roma neighborhood “Nadejda” in Sliven and the music is performed by the famous local Roma band “White swans”. Ventzislav Kirkov from BFPA is the Executive Producer. The initiative received active support from H.E. Jonathan Allen, UK Ambassador in Bulgaria, and the British organizations Comic Relief and The Tudor Trust.

Asen HristovAfter the premiere there was an open discussion “The visual arts as a prevention tool”. The discussion focused on innovative approaches for increasing awareness and participation in vulnerable communities. Here are some of the main messages of the panelists during the discussion:

H.E. Jonathan Allen, UK Ambassador in Bulgaria: Education is at the basis of every effort of community development. According to data from the World Bank 23% of the new arrivals to the Bulgarian labor market are Roma, and only one in five has graduated secondary school. This means that a huge and increasing part of the Bulgarian workforce is not competitive in a globalizing world. The solution for Bulgaria is either to import workers, or to develop the full potential of the existing working potential, including Roma community.

Media coverageVentzislav Kirkov, BFPA, Producer of “Emi and Ani”: The most valuable thing is that families from the marginalized groups figured out for themselves at least two of the factors that increase their poverty – early school dropouts and early marriages. Thus the idea for the plot of the film was created within the community and the educational element in the making of the artwork was not externally enforced. Without such awareness we cannot expect a real change in behavior.  It seems to me that such an approach is really important. Furthermore, such an approach does not demand a lot of financing, most of all it demands care and attention.

Dr. Radosveta Stamenkova, BFPA, Executive Director: Products like “Emi and Ani” have powerful messages not because they contain some miraculous discoveries, but because they have been made by the people from the community and carry a huge emotional charge and a lot of authenticity.  It is up to us to use them the best we can. To me, this film is the foot we put in the door Attendanceso that it doesn’t slam in our face, but to be used as a topic for discussion and a search for answers and solutions.

Victor Lilov, Mesechina Music: Some time ago within a project we created an informal musical school for little children in the “Nadejda” district of Sliven, and as a direct outcome the band “Karandila Junior” was later formed. We had to renovate the premises and when it was done, the first opening day the children were lined up waiting with music notebooks in hand. They were really eager to learn and become the musicians they are today. Nowadays they receive invitations to participate in concerts, they know what an art program is, they know what good management is, they know how good it feels to be appreciated – their point of view has changed. They understood what it is to have an equal opportunity. I would like such projects to be elaborated not by us, but by people like the “White Swans” and other members of the Roma community.

Tanya Kovacheva, OAK Foundation: For years we have been funding projects for prevention of sexual exploitation of children in Bulgaria. I think it’s necessary to seek new possibilities for improving cooperation on an inter-institutional level.

Link to a photo gallery of the event

See also our short film on prevention of trafficking - "Two little girls"

 

Banner
Banner

Latest news

‘My Body, My Rights’: Health Mediators form Yambol Municipality about their work in State of Emergency Conditions

Yambol, May 2020

The parents are unemployed. Several days ago one of the brothers has come from abroad, unfortunately with no money. All the family does not have the right to go out of home. They all are quarantined. One day while she is working in her cabinet Kina Asenova is hearing a kid crying on the street. She is going out to see what is happening and sees the family’s six-year old child shaking on the ground and screaming. She finds out that the boy wants a snack very much and the family cannot afford that kind of expense... She goes to the shop, buys a box of the snacks and gives it them. ‘The next day we started distributing food. We gave it away without judging people’s race. We give as well for mentally disabled and people with different diseases’.
Kina is health mediator from 2008, but she works with people on different projects from the 2000s. People trust her. Her colleagues – Atanaska Mutafova, Asen Stoyanov, Atanas Atanasov, Ivan Ivanov and the mediators from Tundja Municipality daily do work in the villages Kukorevo, Kozarevo, Veselinovo, Drazhevo, Hadjidimovo. They work all day long, even on weekends. ‘Since Bulgaria declared state of emergency because of the Covid pandemic we are every day on the field, we give information on the infection, explain them why it’s important to stay at home. We are tracking people who came back from abroad and we make sure that they follow the quarantine guidelines. We have such people in almost every village.’

 
‘My Body, My Rights’ – Successes and Challenges

Health mediators from Montana, Bulgaria, and their work in state of emergency
Montana, March-May 2020

Peter Cvetanov, Sonya Rumenova and Valya Alexandrova are health mediators in Montana Municipality. The three of them as a team are implementing activities part of the project of Bulgarian Family Planning and Sexual Health Association (BFPA) – ‘My Body, My Rights’ (2018–2021). In addition to their municipality, pilot work is being done in two other locations in Bulgaria: Yambol and Sofia. The project is implemented in partnership with organizations from Serbia and Romania, with the coordinating role of International Planned Parenthood Federation and is supported by the programme for social responsible business of the company MSD via their campaign ‘MSD for Mothers’. Main goal of the initiative is to improve the conditions for ensuring quality of family planning services for vulnerable communities and to build capacity and civil responsibility within the communities.
Sonya in a health mediator from 2013. She graduated economics, married with two children: a boy and a girl: ‘Several years ago Roma women from the neighborhood didn’t see doctors for prophylactics. Part of them were not insured, others simply were living with their prejudices and fears. We had two obstetrics-gynecologists as part of the Bulgarian-swiss cooperation program ZOV. They were visiting the health center in the neighborhood according to schedule. Then we decided to form local women’s group for self support, where initially timidly, but afterwards more confidently we started talking about examinations, contraception, family planning, prevention of sexually transmitted infections... The women from the group started little by little to shake off their fears.’ They just made progress and the activities on project ended. Only  mediators remained in the health center. And then for them new opportunity arose via the project ‘My Body, My Rights’. ‘It gave us the opportunity to continue just on time. The group for self support is developing; the health center in the neighborhood is alive again.’ Sonya succeeded to motivate a poor mother of nine children for IUD insertion. Before that she tried many times, but without any success. ‘I think that she was mostly afraid of being damaged by IUD. Now I know for sure that my long-term working with this woman was not in vain.”

 
Learning Action Partnership: Efforts for Guaranteed Sustainability

Sofia, February 12, 2020

The first for 2020 meeting of the Learning Action Partnership took place in Sofia on February 12, 2020. The agenda included review of activities done on project up to the moment, fixing of concrete future activities and defining small working groups for the different strategic directions.
Representatives of organizations and institutions who participated shared their working plans and the possibility of inclusion of other LAP members in joint activities. Part of the feedback was connected with the increase of fake news, including on priorities of the Partnership. The atmosphere of the event was businesslike, but with extremely well expressed solidarity and good collaboration feeling. In the debates during the meeting important actual topics were covered, such as increasing media and digital literacy of children and challenges, which we are meeting in our work with teachers with long practice on certain age and with burnout. Forming network of children and young people with innovative model of managing was discussed, which will aim decreasing the aggression of children under residential care. How to focus our work so that the efforts put to have guaranteed sustainability; science and research approach and regional and national level partnerships; the need to work together to change the environment – were among topics discussed during the event.

Banner

Общи :: The visual arts as a prevention tool