In 2012, we launched our signature initiative TEACH to help one of the most marginalized communities in Europe – the Csángó Hungarians in Romania – pass on their language and cultural heritage by enhancing and expanding their underfunded efforts to provide native language education to their children. The Csángó comprise several similar, related, non-homogenous groups that live primarily in eastern Transylvania and parts of Moldova, in eastern Romania. While there is still much to be done, the foundation has set in place building blocks to assist the Csángós in their efforts.
Since April of 2012, our foundation has provided significant financial and material support to The Csángó Hungarian Education Program of Moldova run by the Hungarian Teachers’ Association of Romania (RMPSZ). The program serves the needs of over 2000 students in 29 localities, almost all small rural communities. Please click here for a map of the teaching locations.
In support of the Csángó Hungarian Education Program of Moldova, our foundation:
- purchases and disseminates thousands of new native language books, workbooks, flash cards, magazines, games, and school supplies for the children enrolled in these local grassroots schools,
- sends to several schools basic computers and printers, teaching projectors, films and audio materials to help modernize the existing technological equipment,
- funds an extensive native language immersion camps – known locally as the Pillangó Summer Camp Program – that send hundreds of students to native language camps in Hungary and Transylvania, Romania, every year,
- sponsors a variety of academic and talent competitions (in folk singing, dancing and storytelling), which award students prizes and celebrated the students’ cultural and linguistic heritage,
- provides substantial funding for Csángó students to reside at the Csángó Boarding School of Csíkszereda (Miercurea Ciuc) in Transylvania, where they are continuing their native language education at local high schools, vocational schools and universities,
- helped establish the Sándor Teodóz Jáki Scholarship which rewards Csángó university and high school students who demonstrate exceptional educational achievements and which honors the memory of the highly esteemed Benedictine father and educator,
- funded the construction of a sports field adjacent to the Hungarian language school in the village of Lészped (Lespezi), where the students enjoy playing sports with their friends from all cultural backgrounds in the spirit of bringing the community together and promoting tolerance and respect among all community members.
In 2014, we co-established with the Godparent Association for the Csángó Hungarians of Moldova a new scholarship program for Csángó students from Moldova studying at universities in Hungary.
Also in 2014, we expanded our TEACH initiative to help fund native language education for Csángó students of the Gyimes region of Transylvania by providing support to Saint Elizabeth’s High School in Gyimesfelsőlok (Lunca de Sus).
Our foundation also provides funding for the Bástya Boarding School in the village of Vice (Vița), Transylvania. The school serves the needs of Csángó and local students, who share classes.
Students of the Csángó Boarding School of Csíkszereda (Miercurea Ciuc)
Our foundation actively supports community cultural events in Csángóland in Romania. We have provided financial assistance to the Csángó Ethnographical Museum in Zabola (Zăbala) in Transylvania and to the local Csángó Radio, based in the village of Csík (Ciucani) in Moldova, which celebrates the linguistic, musical and cultural heritage of the community and covers local events in Hungarian and Romanian.
In 2013, we launched the László Barabási Scholarship Program for students of the Szeklerland region of Transylvania, Romania. In 2014, we expanded the program to assist all native Hungarian-speaking students in Romania. The goal of the Barabási Scholarship Program is to recognize and reward the academically gifted, civic-minded students of the region. Qualifying students now have the chance to win 1,500 – 4,500 lei (RON) in scholarship money per academic year. Native Hungarian-speaking students study in proportionally lower numbers at university as a result of a combination of factors, among them having an additional subject as part of their school-leaving exams, the disproportionately low number of places available at university for minority students, and the unavailability of a number of important courses and degrees in minority languages.
Pillangó jutalomtábor Csíkszentimrén az újfalusi és szitási gyermekeknek 🙂
Posted by Újfalusi Magyar Ház on Sunday, August 28, 2016
Children from the villages of Újfalu (Satu Nou) and Szitás (Nicoreşti) in Moldova having fun at a Pillangó Summer Camp in Csíkszentimre (Sântimbru) in Transylvania, Romania