News – Promotion and Accessibility

Training in advocacy for the community learning initiatives

javnozastupanjekBelgrade, December 2015. A series of workshops, organized within the framework of the IX Adult Learning Festival, ended with a three-day workshop on advocacy. Adult Education Society prepared the training program prepared in cooperation with Foundation “Trag”, while Snežana Stojanović facilitated the training. The workshop held at the Centre for Culture and Sports “Šumice” and in the Adult Education Society, was attended by 20 representatives of 15 organizations that organize noncommercial learning activities in the community. The aim of the training was to improve knowledge and skills of participants to publicly advocate for community initiatives. They worked on specific examples, so that during the three days group developed basic elements of two projects of public advocacy: Opening of the first community learning center in Belgrade and Part of the Soko Society building return. Including the Festival central event and the preparatory partners meeting, this was the sixth meeting of partner organizations, which further strengthened the spirit of unity and partnership in this group of organizations. Next steps will include further development of the two projects and start of campaigns of advocacy in 2016.

The final ceremony of the IX Adult Learning Festival

festdevBelgrade, December 2015. The final ceremony of the IX Adult Learning Festival is organized in ImpactHUB in Belgrade on December 3rd, 2015. This year the Festival is organized under the motto “Everyone can learn everything he wants and everyone can teach.” During the Festival, numerous visitors had the opportunity to introduce different organizers of non-profit learning activities in Belgrade, through the introductory presentation, the collage film about learning in the community, and then through workshops organized at the event. It was an opportunity to experience the learning through psychological workshops, poetry workshops, studio photography, dance studio, workshop organic farming, decoupage, drawing on canvas … After this session, the idea of Community Learning Centre was presented, and then during a cocktail visitors had a chance to create their own Community Learning Centre, in accordance with their wishes and needs, but also in accordance with their abilities and talents, because the idea of the Community Learning Centre it based on resources in the community. The results of these activities will be analysed and used for the design of the development strategy of the first Community Learning Centre in Belgrade, which will be organized on a workshop that will be held in late December. IX Adult Learning Festival is closed with magnificent, intergenerational performance of two choirs. The choir of Elementary school “Drinka Pavlović” and the choir of Gerontology Daily centre “Aging Forbidden!” jointly sang several songs including the EKV’s song “This is the country for us”. One of the key indicators about the need for Community Learning Centre in Belgrade is presence of more than 250 people in the Festival closing ceremony.

Press conference on IX Adult Learning Festival in Belgrade

konfmediacBelgrade, December 2015. In the Media Center Belgrade the press conference was organized on the occasion of the central ceremony of IX Adult Learning Festival in Belgrade. Adult Education Society announced the ceremony and presented a new concept for learning in community. The initiatives that AES starts with network of partner organizations. The Festival program, partners and interactive educational programs were presented to journalists. Beside the journalists the conference also attended the representatives of the Education Center of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and they have declared willingness to cooperate and participate in the work of the Community Learning Centre.

Innovative methods and programs in the field of daily community services for the elderly

dnevnicentBelgrade, November 2015. Adult Education Society participated in preparation and organization of the expert meeting “Innovative methods and programs in the field of daily community services for the elderly” The event was hosted by Gerontology Centre Belgrade, and held in elderly house “Bežanijska kosa” in Belgrade on 30th of November. The manifestation was organized for social workers employed in gerontology centres in Serbia with the aim to present innovative methods and programs in the field of daily community services for seniors. The Gerontology Centre Belgrade, one of the key partners for Community Learning Centre initiative, recognized the significance of the education and learning of seniors and invited AES to supplement the content of the event and assist in its implementation. AES’s associates presented in three working sessions a theoretical framework for understanding elderly learning and education. Then the participants were shown a video collage about community learning with examples of good practice. A special session was dedicated to interactive workshop about possible design of the Centre for Community Learning. After summarizing and presenting the workshop results participants were encouraged to launch initiatives by short movie on self-sustained learning community from the United States, but also by discussion and exchange of experience.

Adult Learning Festival in Bor

sertifikatiborBor, November 2015. The closing ceremony of the IX Adult Learning Festival in Bor was organized in The National Library Bor. This year all activities were dedicated to starting and supporting the learning initiatives in the community. Framework program of adult education activities in Bor municipality 2016 was presented. The New Age Movement, Association of Young Researchers Bor, National Library Bor and Reading Room Europe have been recognized as the key stakeholders for establishing community learning initiatives. The IX Adult Learning Festival was a great chance for the festive certificate award. The participants that successfully finished the program for the web journalists got the certificates. Furthermore, the partners that attended the cycle of Adult Education Society capacity building trainings for starting the Community Learning Centre, received the certificates as well. In the end of the ceremony the coordinating working group for promotion and lobbing for Community Learning Centres was introduced to the audience and local media representatives.

Andragogical training for community learning initiatives

andragoskagnezdoBelgrade, November 2015. Last training for supporting community learning initiatives, organized by Adult Education Society as part of preparation for the IX Adult Learning Festival, is held in the Office for Youth “Nest” in the period 13.-14.11.2015. The training “Creation and implementation of educational programs” was attended by 18 representatives of various learning initiatives in the community, from small informal groups, through NGOs to institutions. The training was conducted by collaborators from Department of Andragogy, Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade: Tamara Nikolic Maksic and Aleksandar Bulajic. The aim of the training was to improve the competencies for the design and implementation of educational programs for adults. Since each of these organizations have learning activities, participants said they got valuable knowledge, necessary for their future work, as well as interest in continued cooperation.

Training in community mobilization for community learning initiatives

zajednicaBelgrade, November 2015. Adult Education Society organized the second, of three trainings to support community learning initiatives, in preparation of IX Adult Learning Festival, in period 7.-8. November 2015. The training „Active Local Community“ organized in the Office for youth “Nest” was attended by 23 representatives of various community learning initiatives, from small informal groups, through NGOs to institutions. Adult Education Society prepared training programme in cooperation with Foundation Trag, and facilitated by trainers Snežana Stojanović and Sonja Todorovic. The aim of the training was to improve knowledge and skills of participants to organize activities in community, to mobilize community members and to fundraise in community. The positive working atmosphere and a very dynamic work was crowned in the end of the training with high grades of participants.

Training “Creation and facilitation of programs for elderly” organized for Red Cross Serbia

redcrossBelgrade, October 2015. In the period 29-30 October, 2015, as part of preparatory activities for the IX Adult Learning Festival, Adult Education Society (AES) in cooperation with the Red Cross Serbia organized the second andragogical training “Creation and facilitation of programs for the elderly”. AES recognized Red Cross Serbia, as already did with Belgrade Gerontology Centre, as a partner of special importance for the implementation of the initiative “Community Learning Centre”. In that respect, dedicated andragogical training was organized for Red Cross volunteers, for which a special training program was developed. The training was attended by 43 Red Cross volunteers, engaged in self-help groups of the Care for Elderly Program in 9 towns in Serbia. Participants were divided into two working groups, and the training was facilitate by colleagues from the Chair of Andragogy, Faculty of Philosophy, Belgrade University: Tamara Nikolić Maksić, Maja Maksimović, Jelena Aleksić and Aleksandar Bulajić. Red Cross volunteers in the training had an opportunity to learn about the elements of an educational program, and how to create one, taking into account the specific needs of elderly, how to select and formulate the objectives and outcomes of the program, as well as how to present a program. Throughout the training there was a very positive atmosphere. The participants were very active and inspired, and at the end of the training expressed their readiness to undertake activities that contribute to the implementation of the initiative “Community Learning Centre.”

Training “Creation and facilitation of programs for elderly” organized for Belgrade Gerontological Centre

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABelgrade, October 2015. In the premises of the Retirement home “Bežanijska Kosa”, of the Belgrade Gerontology Centre (BGC), in the period October 19-20, 2015, a training “Creation and facilitation of programs for the elderly” have been organized. The training, organized by the Adult Education Society (AES) and BGC as part of preparatory activities of the IX Adult Learning Festival, aimed to support employees in gerontology institutions to independently create and facilitate educational programs for elderly. 23 experts working within BGC participated in the training: social workers, psychologists, occupational therapists, etc. AES engaged trainers (Aleksandar Bulajic, MA and Tamara Nikolic Maksić, Ph.D.) from Department of Andragogy, Faculty of Philosophy University of Belgrade, and training program is specifically developed for this occasion with the support of Mrs. Svetlana Živanić, adviser in the State Institute for Social Welfare and head of the 3rd Age University Network, for many years. The vast experience of the group in working with the elderly was good starting point for discussions about application of presented andragogical concepts in the sphere of work with the elderly, that followed each thematic session. The quality of the obtained recommendations and information from the group was such that trainers recognized it as an important source of information and insight to further develop training for professionals working with elderly.

Participation in open discussion „Internet Access – Infrastructure and Digital Literacy in the Region“

tribunaBelgrade, October 2015. Representative of Adult Education Society, Nikola Koruga participated as panelist at open discussion „Internet Access – Infrastructure and Digital Literacy in the Region“held in Centre for Cultural Decontamination. Open discussion was a part of event „Internet Access in Serbia: Problems, Challenges and Solutions“, organized by Internet Society Serbia in cooperation with Serbian National Internet Domain Registry. Desiree Milošević, representative of the ISOC Board of Trustees, moderate the discussion. The panelists were discussing the internet access in Serbia from different angles. They also proposed some improvement strategies. Nikola highlighted that digital literacy is the key factor for internet access and called everybody to digitally literate their relatives and become active in community projects. Participants concluded that free internet access at the public spaces and educational institutions can give the key contribution to lifelong learning and quality in education. The event was continued with lecture of Frederic Donk from ISOC European Bureau from Brussels. Afterwards, the panel „Privatization of Telecom Serbia and Development of Electronical Communication“ closed the event.

AES participeted in dicussion at Manifestation “Senior Days on Zvezdara”

SeniorsDayBelgrade, September 2015. Manifestation “Senior Days on Zvezdara” was opened this year on 21st of September, with expert meeting “Activation and Activism of Seniors in Belgrade – the Needs and Opportunities”. This is a traditional gathering of social partners and professionals, who are working in the field of social work, education and the health of seniors, organized by Voluntary Centre Zvezdara Municipality. The discussion was focused on prevention and treatment of dementia, because of the World Alzheimer’s Day (21st of September). The representatives of the Adult Education Society accented the importance of learning for preventing a onset of dementia. Furthermore, with respect to the experience of the older population they were recognized as a main resource for running educational activities in society. Forthcoming Adult Learning Festival was announced, and existing and a new partners were invited to join the initiative for establishing centres for community learning. Represetatives of Adult Education Society brought a few copies of the book “The Golden Age of Life – Ideas for an Enjoyable and Active Old Age (examples of good practice)”, that caught significant attention of the new partners and additional copies of the book were requested. The meeting finished with great enthusiasm for implementation of presented ideas for improvement of the quality of elderly life.

International Literacy Day in Kragujevac

ildkgKragujevac, September 2015. The action “Adults let’s return to school!” was organized in Kragujevac in the context of International Literacy Day, with the aim to motivate the potential participants of the Functional Elementary Education for Adults (FEEA) to join the programme, provided in Kragujevac by the elementary school “Dragiša Luković Španac”. The action was organized by non-formal group of high school students from Kragujevac, with support of Adult Education Society. On the spot, the action was supported by members of the school FEEA team, school director, representative from local government, and Roma coordinator. Promotional flyers were distributed to citizens and they were asked to share this information with the neighbors, without elementary school, and to motivate them. Also, the notebooks and pencils were given to potential participants of FEEA as motivation to comeback to education. This shows that everybody can motivate adults to participate in education, which can improve overall quality of life in the community. The main outcome of this event was 13 new applications for the new school year. Potential participants from Roma community ask organizers to do promotion of FEEA at their municipalities and motivate more people to come back to the education. The action was a good opportunity to announce forthcoming Adult Learning Festival.

Meeting with partners interested in community learning initiative

kcgradBelgrade, September 2015. The first phase of the Adult Learning Festival 2015 finalised with the meeting with social partners and interested organizations, group and individuals – initiatives for learning in community. Adult Education Society organized the meeting in KC GRAD on September 14th with the aim to present and network initiatives for learning in Belgrade’s communities and to discuss possibility for establishment of community learning centres. Final poster of the meeting was a convincing testimony of the significant capacities, in the context of programmes, space and organization, that partner have, as well as testimony of partner’s enthusiasm that welcomed this idea. The next step will be to provide support to partners in respect of training and creation of concept of community learning centres. In the third step festival promotional events will be organized in order to promote learning initiatives and the new model to the wider audience.

International Literacy Day 2015 in Belgrade

literacydaybgBelgrade, September 2015. On the occasion of 8th September, the International Literacy Day, Adult Education Society in cooperation with City-Guerilla organized in Spanish House (Belgrade, Savamala district) activity with the aim of promoting the upcoming Adult Learning Festival. Event was organized for the members of Savamala community, though students of educational sciences and linguistics joined the activity. Volunteers from the Students’ Andragogy Club helped the organization of the event. The first point on agenda was lecture on historical understanding of the concept of literacy. Discussion followed. Than adult learners’ testimonials were presented. Participants also had the opportunity to exchange personal items that symbolise learning, take books from mobile open library, and listen to popular songs about adult education and learning. The members of Savamala community initiated discussion about community learning and their educational needs. The final point on agenda was decisions about future projects and actions regarding adult learning and urban development.

Announcement of the Adult Learning Festival Invitation Call

ucenjeuzajedniciBelgrade, July 2015. Announcement of the Festival invitation call, marked a beginning of the IX Adult Learning Festival in Serbia. This year Festival moto is “Learning in Community”. The aim of the Festival is to highlight the importance of learning in community, to empower it and to promote it. Festival address all initiatives for learning in community – non-profit, voluntary activities of the members of community in which are characterised by exchange of knowledge, skills and attitudes. Activities organized by smaller or bigger, formal or non-formal groups, sporadically or regularly, either temporarily or permanently, in private or in public space. Initiated and/or financially supported by local government, some local institution or by external initiative, but also those self-organized, self-sustainable and self-managed. In the first Festival phase initiatives will be identified and networked. In the second phase they will be supported by training, and the promotional spots will be made. In the third phase a promotional events will be organized in the cities where clouds of initiatives exist. Apart from Belgrade, the network of Adult Education Society’s partners provided additional support in Festival call distribution and partner motivation in another 5 cities of Serbia.

Adult Education Society on The Red Cross conference about abuse of older population

nasiljenadstarimaBelgrade, June 2015. Red Cross of Serbia and Commissioner for Protection of Equality organized on June 15th 2015. conference „On reducing discrimination and abuse of older people in the Republic of Serbia“. The aim of the conference was to identify the main problems that exist in the system of protection of elderly from discrimination and violence, as well as to give recommendations how to solve these problems more efficiently, starting with the rights-based approach. Besides the organizers of the event and representatives of the Office for Human and Minority Rights, the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Interior, a representative of the Society for Adult Education, Dusan Zdravkovic, addressed the gathering noting the importance of participation of the elderly in learning activities and community education, as well as discrimination of seniors in this domain. The examples of good practice from the country and the world gave a clear recommendations for improving the situation in the education and learning of the elderly in Serbia.

The Learning Parking on The Mikser Festival

ParkingposterBelgrade, June 2015. Adult Education Society promoted the potential of alternative places to study in the local community on the Mikser Festival 2015, within EDU Zone. It was an interactive exhibition named Learning Parking. The central part of the presentation was a short documentary film about examples of good practice – initiatives for learning and knowledge sharing in the community and community improvement through learning, self-organized groups of citizens, non-governmental organizations and local governments. The film was supported by exhibition of photographs and texts of initiatives for learning. Visitors were asked to update the list of self-organized learning groups with initiatives that they know, also to express need for start-up some of the initiatives in their part of the city. They had a chance to share what they could learn others in such a group, as well as what they want to learn. This activity was an announcement for the 2015 Adult Learning Festival but also and opportunity to inspire and encourage citizens to join of the study groups in their community, or perhaps they themselves initiate the establishment of such a group.

Adult Education Society’s representatives Spoke at BG Ignite

ignite1Belgrade, April 2015. NGO Serbia on the move organized a 31st Ignite Belgrade on April 27th. This method of public speaking involves dynamic presentation of ideas in an informal setting and it is practiced in more than 100 cities around the world. The rules are simple: presentation lasts five minutes; each presentation has 20 slides; slides automatically turns on 15 seconds; presenter has no control over changing slides. The theme was “My society loves differences”. Partners of event were Network of friends of inclusive education, Fund for an Open Society, Centre for Interactive Pedagogy and Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction Unit. Ten presenters talked about the fight for the inclusion of marginalized groups in society. Adult Education Society (AES) joined this manifestation with presentation on marginalized groups adult learner’s testimonials, collected on Adult Learner’s Festivals in 2013 and 2014. With this presentation AES highlighted importance and capacity of adult learning and education for inclusion of marginalized groups, connected with number of organizations that are actively engaged in educational inclusion, and tried to encourage some of citizens in numerous audience to engage in learning in community and support it.

Activism of seniors

SeniorskiaBelgrade, April 2015. Municipality of Zvezdara and Volunteering Centre of Zvezdara, one of the important partner for Adult Education Society, were organized public presentation of research results on topic „Activism of Seniors from Belgrade – needs and possibilities“. The aim of the research was to discovered statements and knowledge of the respondents about activism of seniors, causes of their social exclusion and finally what to motivate them to be active. In the section of the recommendations authors emphasized lack of continuing and accessible educational programmes and those for seniors’ empowerment. Representatives of AES actively participated to the presentation and discussed the significance of establishment of initiatives for inter- and intra-generational exchange at the level of local communities. This activities will open space and give opportunity for seniors to become more active, recognisable as valuable members of society and equal participants in communication with younger generations. This activities can be an excellent example of groups for learning in community and community development. The presentation was the great opportunity for the representatives of AES to make contacts with possible partners, which are active in the field of education for third aged population. This event gave new ideas for the activities of the upcoming Adult Learning Festival.

Active and quality life support by longlife learning

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABelgrade, March 2015. Representatives of Adult Education Society helped with the realisation of a seminar „How to reach quality of life among a population of third age“. The event was held in Gerontological Centre of Belgrade on 4th of March 2015. The first lecture was dedicated to the topic „Active and quality life support by lifelong learning“ and was delivered by the project manager of Adult Education Society. This introductory session of half an hour raised many questions, ideas and suggestions for new learning opportunities and activities. Afterwards, participants had the opportunity to listen to topics from in the fields of sociology, health care, activism and psychology. The seminar finished with tombola, where Adult Education Society awarded six participants with vouchers for books and one month of Tai Chi Chuan and yoga training for seniors. During the launch break, possibilities for cooperation in the field of senior education was discussed with representatives from different stakeholder groups.