Small children don’t care who belongs to what groups. Are you nice with me, do you play with me or not? That’s it. Later they learn it from us adults to greet older people differently, not to eat too much candy in order not to become ugly fat and not to stare at disabled people on the street. We teach them our prejudices slowly and also the things that shouldn’t be asked.
On the first of May in Hungary we are celebrating with beer and sausage that we can work under more or less fair conditions: theoretically eight hours a day with social security, paid leave and the promise of pension. Such working rights and conditions are provided for most of this article’s readers which our ancestors couldn’t dream of a 150 years ago. But if we look around a bit more we can see that many people are still not free. While slavery is illegal in every country there have never been so many slaves on the Earth as today.
Blind and visually impaired people have difficulties in doing everyday tasks. Transportation, dealing with official matters or even to do a simple shopping can be problem. The Association of Blind and Visually Impaired in Csongrád has launched an initiative to help visually impaired people in shopping.
The Hungarian population ranks high in terms of alcohol consumption, and alcohol abuse very frequently results in alcoholism. Alcohol related conditions both physical and mental can be accurately diagnosed and treated, but timely prevention and education may have an even more important role in fighting the epidemic. In this country the addiction problems of handicapped people is a taboo subject, yet this demographic group is just as affected by addiction as any other.
Last night the people here noticed a strange blue glow coming from the old castle in the forest. The light show invoking alien invasion was however highlighting some of our fellow humans who live among us, yet are often treated like alien beings. On World Autism Awareness Day, blue light illuminated countless locations worldwide, from Niagara Falls to this crumbling old castle. Not so long ago, autism was considered a rare condition, while today it is recognized to affect one in 100 people, though often the symptoms remain undiagnosed. Probably, autistic people have always been among us, though in earlier times would be stuck with the labels 'village idiot' or 'eccentric genius'. Albert Einstein is assumed to have been on the autism spectrum, only back in his time autism research was in its infancy.
Like a birthday cake isn't meant to be eaten alone, or mother's day reserved for mothers only, so Roma Day celebrations are only worthwhile if it is not observed exclusively by gypsies. In fact, confined to official ceremonies and authentic, positive stereotype enforcing gypsy concerts alone, one would have a hard time presenting Roma diversity to an audience of any ethnicity. Yesterday in Budapest and across the nation, Roma Day presented a rich and varied program to universal audiences.
Velvet curtains, classy architecture, champagne at the buffet – that is how a direct marketing treatment would kick off. All you need to do is stay put in your seat, and applaud politely when it's done, like you would an acceptance speech. But is that what theater really is? Could Shakespeare, and a bunch of theater activists be right in asserting all the world's a stage, and all the men and women players?
Members of the Public Workers Movement handed over a letter to the Ministry of Interior in September 2015. Although resignation and fear keeps an increasing number of public employees from raising their voices for their rights and humane work environments, the members of the movement brought to life by the Hungarian Anti-Poverty Network (Magyar Szegénységellenes Hálózat) still have the courage to play, ask, and represent their demand that they as people in employment should also be granted viable conditions.
The number of really child-friendly cafés in Budapest can be counted on one hand, making it a special challenge to get out and relax as parents and taking our boisterous kids along. HellóAnyu! (Hi Mom!) is a pro-family community space featuring diverse programs, an organic café and child-friendly interior, to enable fun for all, big or small, while maintaining a community focus.
Only a few minutes' walk from Oktogon, the two-storey HellóAnyu! building is a busy, teeming treasure trove. The place is basically a great big playhouse, with diaper changing table, study corner and yoga room facilities available as well as hot food and a range of sweets and desserts for the whole family. This special space accommodates a wide range of age groups: six-month toddlers can crawl around or doze off on the huge baby mat, kindergarten age kids have a dynamic assortment of toys and games at their disposal, school students can take their homework into a quiet nook or take tea with friends, while parents can finally meet up with their own friends and socialize.
Although we often experience that people who are distant in terms of age, geographic location or social status hardly understand one another and approach the matters of the world and one another along different values and attitudes, in fact, generational and other gaps are not as scary as they may seem. If we try to foster understanding not only through theoretical lectures and campaigns, but through real-life, positive encounters, it’s easy to experience outlandish strangers become friendly acquaintances. Magosfa Foundation has been organising meetings for elementary students and retirement home residents for several years, through which they have a chance to get to know each other, as well as learn about environment-friendly solutions. Many individuals, teachers and social care workers have had the chance to learn about the methods of this initiative that was created based on a Dutch model.