We discussed the impact of the pandemic on the project, talked over the most urgent and important tasks for the coming weeks and months, and we agreed on a date for the next online meeting.
The “population ageing process”, characterised by an increase in the age of the population and a decrease in the number of children born is a common phenomenon throughout Europe. The most affected area on the continent is Southern Europe, which is hit hard by the migration of young people. Our partners have been chosen from this area. In recent years, more and more young Hungarians have left small towns in the countryside for larger cities or migrated abroad looking for job opportunities, which have exacerbated problems such as the accelerated aging of the population. So far Hungary has responded very slowly to this process. Thus reflecting on and addressing the issue has become an urgent duty of our cultural institutions and our partner institutions.
The Main aims of our project are:
- To prepare the participating institutions for working with and engaging the elderly in a structured and conscious way
- To acquire effective methods of discovering, raising awareness of and transmitting the values of older generations
- To develop and expand the competences of our cultural professionals to enable them to: - engage with the elderly,
- To motivate the elderly to take advantage of non
- Formal learning opportunities
- To apply the methods of experiential learning Long term goals:
- To develop a new strategy for collaborating with older people
- To develop an own method that reaches the elderly in general not only those with greater cultural interest
The organizations would like to implement an exchange of good practice that allows Hungarian partners to draw on the experiences and methodological knowledge of foreign professionals and prepare their employees for the work in the field of teaching the elderly. During the exchange, we are primarily interested in non-formal learning methods, which enable the members of the target group to learn more about themselves, and to engage in active recreation and enjoy themselves. In our work with older people the object is regarded as a tool (and a common language), awakens the memory which is the transferring material that helps to bring the hidden values to the surface. The members of this age group possess various kinds of cultural treasures, the existence of which most of them are not aware of. Through the present project, we wish to raise the awareness of the elderly that the experience and knowledge they carry has great cultural value, to identify these values, to organize them in a system and to present and explain them (e.g. in the form of exhibitions, virtual exhibitions) to the community and the future generations. Digital technique is an important tool in achieving our goals, which will be introduced to the participants during the preparation for the joined exhibitions and the connecting events. The joint realization of exhibitions has a huge community-building power as during the process your treasure becomes our treasure.
23 enthusiastic dedicated partners have come together from seven different institutions of five European countries, to start working closely together, to share our experiences and good practices over the next 20 months.
After a day full of traveling from several corner of Europe, our first meeting was organized in Cserkeszőlő in Jász-Nagykun-Szolnok County. After a cheerful dinner, Gabriella Pusztai, the Director of the General Education Center, the leader of the Hungarian consortium gave her welcome speech, but in a really special way! Her welcome words were spoken in the partners’ mother tongue as well as in English, so, in a total of six European languages: Spanish, Greek, Portuguese, Italian, and last but not least, Hungarian; by this to establish a familiar cross-border relationship that will accompany our months spending together.
The second day of the TPM was continued in the conference room of the Local History Museum in Kunszentmárton. After the opening speech of the mayor of Kunszentmárton, Attila Wenner-Várkonyi, we started the day with a warm-up program: with the help of Ferenc Mucsi potter master we painted a plate! The refreshing plate painting and icebreaking game brought our international team closer to each other, so we could start the more serious part of our mission.
Henceforward, Zsolt Pusztai, the director of the Túri Fazekas Museum in Mezőtúr, talked about the memory itself as the central idea of the project and our further goals. He underlined also, that in contrast to the museum programs mainly dealing with the elderly people with dementia, we place more emphasis on preventing dementia and preserving the psychological and mental well-being of the target group.
The presentation was taken over by Csilla Habi, coordinator of the Kunszentmárton Local History Museum, who gave general information about the obligations and tasks affecting all participants.