BAGázs’ Adult Education program provides adults a chance to re-enter and finish primary school in order to improve their chances on the job market.
A high number of people from the settlement have not completed primary education. This puts them at a great disadvantage on the job market and bars them from governmental training programs. This leads to seclusion, unemployment and crime, further widening the social and economic gap.
THE ORIGINS OF THE program - WE WANT TO STUDY
The Education program was an initiative of the people of the settlement. They identified their lack of education as a core problem, and recognized that it is only by education they can escape poverty. So they turned to BAGázs: We want to study. The BAGázs team responded in two months despite the organizational difficulties along the way. Currently in Hungary elementary schools may not provide adult education, and similar initiatives are hard to come by.
In mid-December last year, we found a similar initiative, the School of Opportunities founded by the Society of Jesus at Miskolc. In this program adult education is provided for the poor in the “Kesztyűgyár” community centre in Budapest. After receiving professional and institutional support from Barbara Csapó, the coordinator of the program, we could launch our own project in February, 2016.
The educational method of the program was constructed around three pillars: the know-how accumulated by the team of the School of Opportunities, the method originally developed by BAGázs; and the professional experience of our volunteers. Initially, the students-to-be were tested on their knowledge and then six groups were formed based on these results. The curriculum is focusing on practical training which enables the students to complete their exams at the end of each semester.
THE TUTORS: OUR MOTIVATED AND ENTHUSIASTIC VOLUNTEERS
The grass roots of our program are our voluntary tutors. The volunteers are trained both online as well as via personal tutorials, which include team building, risk management and motivation. They are also well inducted into the style and methods of BAGázs. Our volunteers are from a diverse background, each with a full time job. They are socially sensitive people dedicated to social responsibility and they use their creativity to fulfill their vision.
They serve as role models for the community demonstrating different behaviour patterns and sharing their experience. According to one of our on-site tutors, showing social sensitivity is a rewarding investment in the long run. “The most rewarding thing amongst all their achievements is their commitment to change and it makes us extremely proud.” – and this is something we all share at BAGázs.
STUDENTS – NEVER TOO OLD FOR SCHOOL
A large number of adult learners at Bag have not completed their primary education and are basically semi-literate. Their motivations vary, whether they are mother would like to read bedtime stories for her young ones, or a father would like to simply get rid of his constant dependence on others. “I need help even when filling in a form, that’s very embarrassing” – this father says. A 55-year old granny is one of the most eager students. She would like to help her grandchildren with their studies. A 19-year old student would like to learn a trade and get a driving licence. He believes that by doing so he would have a job, then starting a family would not be an unrealistic goal anymore.
The final objective of most adult learners is to find a way out of a desperate situation, which is often inherited from the previous generations. They realize that education or learning a trade is a good means to find a job, receive a regular income and finally reshape the future for them and their children.
Do you have any questions?
Please let her know at firstname.lastname@example.org
Éva Kanalas – 'Léna'
Local program coordinator
Istvánné Lakatos – 'Kati'
Local program coordinator
It is inspiring to work with people who are truly dedicated. In spite of all the difficulties of making ends meet and living in very poor conditions, education for them is key and I truly appreciate their efforts. Sometimes, they are really struggling, but rarely do they give up on their goals. They are fighting an uphill battle to complete their studies and step forward.
SUPPORT THEIR EDUCATION!
Their future is the future of all of us. Support our adult education project via a single or regular donation!