In order to promote the inclusion of persons, who are third-country nationals and who are legally residents in Latvia (immigrants) in Latvian society, from August this year until 31st December 2020, the society “Cooperation Platform”, in cooperation with the organisation “Shelter “Safe House”, is implementing the project “Integration ABC – 3”.
The main tasks of the project are to introduce a high-quality integration course programme for immigrants and to organise interactive, educational and mutual awareness-raising measures for representatives of both foreign nationals living in Latvia and the host society. The main activities in the course of the project will be integration courses, the Latvian Colloquial Speech Club, activities promoting intercultural communication, as well as joint and common interest activities under the theme “I and You = We”.
The successful integration is possible, if immigrants are given the opportunity to acquire basic knowledge of the history, culture, political situation and institutions of the local community. The participants of the integration courses will explore the fundamental values of Latvia`s history and the country, its political system, acquire knowledge of the social, educational and health services system in Latvia and accessibility, will get to know about the situation in the labour market, employment, the opportunities to work or build their own business, as well as knowledge of Latvian culture, traditions and skills in the development of a dialogue. During the free of charge integration courses are planned to train 750 immigrants in the regions of Riga, Zemgale, Kurzeme, Vidzeme and Latgale.
In its turn, the lessons of the Latvian Colloquial Speech Club will be dedicated to strengthen Latvian language skills in an informal and friendly atmosphere, promoting the daily application of language and reducing the speech barrier. The club`s activities are also planned in all regions of Latvia.
When introducing immigrants to the culture of Latvian and other peoples living in Latvia, four measures promoting intercultural communication and socialisation will be organised. At the end of this year, the Intercultural Day will take place, in which immigrants, together with representatives of the local community, will be able to become acquainted with the Latvian National Museum of Art and meet in a joint afternoon at a teacup. Next year, one of the world`s oldest festivals for spring solstice – NovRouge will be celebrated at the Spring Festival of Friendship. It will be possible to get to know to the Latvian Easter traditions, ancient crafts and cultural and historical heritage on Tradition Day at the Ethnographic Open-Air Museum of Latvia. A diverse programme is also planned in a cycle of events dedicated to Tolerance Day: master classes for getting acquainted with different peoples` cultures, discussions on tolerance, its understanding and examples in everyday life, as well as the concert “Kaleidoscope of Songs and Dances” with the artistic collective participation of Poles, Buryats, Russians and Latvians.
The immigrants will be invited to participate creatively and actively in joint and common interest measures. For example, a small concert programme will be created in Liepaja together with the Austra’s children, in Rezekne – a theatrical show, but in Riga a musical show will be created. The meetings at the teacup, joint tours, talking evenings “Cultural Charm”, painting lessons, creative workshops and many other activities are also planned.
The project “Integration ABC – 3” is implemented by the society “Cooperation Platform” in the framework the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund in cooperation with the organisation “Shelter “Safe House””. The project is co-financed by the European Union. Grant agreement No. PMIF/8/2019/2/01.