Modele de bună practică

Models of good practice

The projects financially supported by the EEA and Norwegian Grants 2014-2021, through the Local Development Program, are initiatives thought and carried out by people for people. In this column, we aimed to bring to the fore some of those for whom the projects financed by us really mean a chance.

Today we share with our readers the story of a teacher who, although born in a poor Roma family, succeeded! Although he experienced discrimination from the time he was a student, he completed his studies and, through work, integrity and perseverance, became, in the community of which he belongs, an example of success for those at the beginning of the path. Currently, Mr. Boby Barabas teaches the Romanian language at the school in the town of Ogra, Mureș county, being also an educational facilitator in the "Ogra.Door - open doors for social inclusion" project, run by the Ogra Municipality. The project aims to contribute to the social inclusion of members of the Roma community by providing integrated housing, education, employment and health services.

"My name is Elek Boby Barabas, I am 42 years old, I live in the town of Ogra, Mures county. I was born in the town of Sânpaul, in a poor family, I think at that time the poorest in the town, having 5 older brothers and a younger brother. I attended secondary school in my hometown, being the only one in the family who managed to finish secondary school. Since the 1st grade I started to know what it means to be discriminated against, the reasons being my ethnicity and the fact that I was poor. Although I studied the best, I was in second place, while another child who was not of Roma ethnicity and came from a rich family was in first place, this because of the gifts that the teacher received from the parents of that classmate.

Because of the permanent discrimination my family was subjected to, because of poverty, I had to fight with most people. After graduating from the 8th grade, I enrolled alone, without my parents' knowledge, at one of the best high schools in Târgu Mureș, being the first Roma in that high school. I still remember: I was dressed in a stitched blouse, torn trousers and wearing rubber slippers. Among the few aids I received during high school were the money my mother gave me to pay for the commute.

The neighbors told me to stop going to school and go with my brothers to work on the cows. But I was ambitious from a young age. I wanted to show the world that even a poor person who has a book can become someone, a different person. In this case, different from my other six siblings. Later, in my high school years, I also benefited from another help that meant a lot in my life, given by one of my mother's classmates: clothes and sometimes money. This support allowed me to finish my studies, proving that it IS POSSIBLE.

After high school, I applied to the Police Academy, but was not accepted. Wanting to be someone respected in this life, not being accepted at the police, I took the exam for the position of teacher at the School Inspectorate. That's how I started my career in teaching the needy to give importance to school in their everyday life. In 2003, I started distance learning at the Faculty of Pedagogy, during which time I worked as a teacher. I think the only place where I was not discriminated against because of ethnicity and social conditions was the university.

Now I am a teacher in Ogra, in a large Roma community. I think I have become a model for the Roma children in the locality, in the last 8 years some of them ended up attending a vocational school, a high school from which they graduated.

Currently, in parallel with the didactic activity, I am involved as an educational facilitator for non-formal activities in the "Ogra.Door - open doors for social inclusion" project, contributing to the selection of project beneficiaries, to the development of the non-formal educational curriculum and to conducting learning activities. In the interaction with children, I try to find effective means to convey the necessary knowledge in the formation of skills, habits, attitudes so important in the life of a student, who is trained for life. For these reasons I agreed to be one of the people who convey messages to the children and young people of Ogra in the film made by the local authorities for the anti-discrimination campaign recently carried out in our town.

I hope to be a role model for many poor children in this locality, as I share my story and the importance of school with them".


Source here.

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This publication has been produced with the financial support of the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Program of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of the Ministry of European Funds and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Commission

Supported by the Rights, Equality & Citizenship Program of the European Union

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