Newsletter May 2015
Dear Nightingale friends,
Since the last newsletter in February a lot of nice things have happened. For example we have celebrated “The Nightingale Day” on the 24th of February. You can see more photos our website, click “Network and partner news”.
Iceland for example celebrated the day by hosting workshops organized by students from the Iceland Academy of Arts: three different workshops centered on music, painting and design/architecture.
At Østfold, Norway they celebrated the day with a masquerade- dancing, eating cookies and playing.
Växjö, Sweden had ”drop-in-coffee” and the project management provided information, showed their inspirational films and handed out coffee and flyers to students at the university during lunch hours.
Kristianstad, Sweden had an exhibition and Malmö, Sweden celebrated the day together with mentors and children, eating a big cake and making Nightingale birds.
We have heard that also Oslo celebrated the day and if somebody else has photos from this day we can upload them in the next newsletter.
News from partners
Växjö, Sweden has finally got confirmation that they can continue, with funds from the municipality and the University.
Halmstad, Sweden have also received positive response in the form of funds from the region, county government and Halmstad municipality will enable them to continue and they will now look for 24 new mentors.
Nightingale Kristianstad, Sweden will celebrate its 10th anniversary at the 9th of May. They will have cake-party and have arranged nice activities for children and mentors and other specially invited guests.
Navarra, Spain has had a conference, hopefully we can read more about this in the upcoming newsletter.
New Nightingale members
We want to welcome Nightingale Tarragona, “Projecte Rossinyol” and hope to get some information about them in the next newsletter.
As you all know I (Carina) have been in Uganda for 15 days, working with Andrew Mukwana and his wife Jeniffer and their team to start the “Nightingale Uganda”.
Mr. and Mrs. Mukwana had already done a great deal of exceptional work before I arrived, contacting different key-persons and made a program for us that we followed every day.
I had some workshops with teachers from different school and held public lectures at the Kampala University. Everyone was so positive about the Nightingale program.
We visited a number of different schools, met headmasters, teachers and children.
When we asked the question: Who wants a mentor? Everyone hold up their hands.
I have also conducted interviews with children who have applied to be part of the program and one thing that stuck me was the difference from when I interviewed Swedish children, who almost every time said that they want to do things and try different activities with their mentor. All these children said the wanted somebody who would listen to them and they all wanted a mentor so that they had somebody that they could talk to.
My name is xxx, a student from the Academy Lawrence s1a. I am a Ugandan aged thirteen. I would like to join the Nightingale program. I would like to get a mentor who can help me solve and listen to all my problems. I want somebody who can listen to me and one I can ask things. Thank you!
At Princess Diana school I even met the “President of the school”! Here I give her a Nightingale pin. She was also awarded the position of The Nightingale ambassador by me. She gave a speech at the launch that was held the 15th of April at Kampala University with almost 1000 people in attendance. It really was a great day when the Nightingale program was launched in Uganda- the first one in Africa with the Dean Vice Chancellor, Professor Badru Kartegga, who is also the founder of the Kampala University.
I will later also upload the film of this fantastic event to our webpage.
This month’s presentation: Nattergalen Stavanger
Torhild Øvestad Rosell presented the Nightingale group at the University of Stavanger (UiS) for international students. (She is third from left in the second row in the photo below).
Nightingale activities and some theory on mentoring were presented to two different groups of international students in 2015:
1: Incoming Erasmus BA-students in spring term
2: MA-students (Erasmus Mundus European MA-course EMMIR) in the autumn
The students are incoming Erasmus students from Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, and Germany, and they take several courses during a full spring term. One optional course of 6 ECTS is called “Migration and Intercultural Relations” and deals with the challenge of migration in schools and kindergartens. The students are all training to be teachers (from kindergarten to upper secondary school), and during the course they have looked into recommended practices to work with minority and migrant children. They have also visited institutions in the Stavanger area to study relevant practices in Norway. After their stay in Stavanger (spring term) they will go back to their own teacher training institution, hopefully with helpful knowledge about mentoring.
Such “recommended practices” may be listed in various research reports. One such report (edited by Prof Friedrich Heckmann) was commissioned by the EU when Governments and NGOs in Europe were asked to take part in a consultation process about how to improve the situation for migrant children/students in education. There was a growing concern in EU countries of alarming underachievement in school by children from such groups.
“Education and Migration – Strategies for integrating migrant children in European schools and societies”.
In this report mentoring is listed as one of sixteen recommendations that Governments and NGOs should look into:
Recommendation no 12 in the Heckmann report
“”Mentoring in different forms and by different actors can substantially improve school attainment. School authorities and school management should encourage and coordinate mentoring activities from outside the school by voluntary associations, welfare organisations, migrant
associations and municipalities. Ethnic mentoring seems to be a particularly successful form of mentoring.”
It may be of interest to observe that “ethnic mentoring” is mentioned especially in this report, as the Nightingale program has never given any priority to mentors (students) belonging to the same ethnic group as the mentee (the child)!
Students have been invited to discuss this issue (ethnic mentoring) and similar choices that have to be made, and also to learn from the way the Nightingale program is organized to qualify students to act as good mentors. Students have contributed with own experiences with mentor-like activities of various kinds in their own countries. The web site of the Nightingale Network has been looked into as well.
Video material from both Sweden and Norway has been very helpful.
Students have also spent time on working with digital storytelling about migration and integration experiences of people they know, even as close as own family.
This has been a meaningful way of identifying with challenges people have in settling into another country and another culture, and still not losing one’s own.
2: MA-students (European MA EMMIR) in the autumn
In the autumn a small group of students from the EMMIR MA-program will work with similar issues as those mentioned above. However, there will be a good deal more theory involved, and at the same time there will also be organized a separate workshop where students have time to go deeper into the materials.
Please check your link on our webpage, so for example Volkshochschule OÖ Institut Interkulturelle Pädagogik, Linz, University of Stavanger, Agder, Østfold, Halmstad your link is not working. Please send us your link so we can update the “Member page”.