14-17 April 2018. as a part of a program of Aktion Mensch Foundation a German delegation from Erfurt arrived to us for the preparation of the material for the Independent Living Center’s German-Hungarian tender. The group that mainly included disabled people was accommodated at Hotel Barbakán. Our programs consisted of: visit the Pécs marketplace, listening to the presentation on the Barrier-free Tourism Day at Tekeres, participation at the Orfű Medvehagyma Festival, visit to the World Heritage Zsolnay Quarter where we listened to a presentation about making the site barrier-free. We also made a visit to the Malomvölgy Social Home (several of our members live here) and the Cella Septichora Mausoleum another World Heritage monument in a wheelchair. The last day we held a workshop at the Center of Civil Societies about lifestyle possible for disabled people in Hungary. The lunch was provided by Bio Bia so the guests could try some good stuff. Finally we made a stop at Retextil where we had the chance to see a workplace employing a disabled community.
1-5 May 2018. it was our turn to make a visit to Germany by a minivan. We attended different presentations of which one was about life, living and labor assistance in Germany at the Landesverband Thüringen Interessenvertretung Selbstbestimmt Leben (at the National Organization of the Thüringen Advocacy of Independent Life). Later we got to know the president and other responsibles of the Erfurt Disability Council through an informative talk. We also had the chance to be present at the reunion for the assistance of the disabled people at Café B, where we participated in a workshop to discuss the main topics of the Aktion Mensch Project.
Our general assembly held on the 7th and 18th of June last year were important milestones because our whole Association got renewed. We elected new presidency, we established new constitution, new plans and new opportunities. The former president Gergő Berkes called out, the new board members Veronika Pataki as president, Roland Balogh vice-president and István Fazekas secretary, Right now could also greet 10 new joiners in our association.
And later we got into the groove!:
Bálint Lovescher designed a super logo for us and we opened up our bilingual website as a result of the expertise of Balázs Oláh and Róbert Rauch. We keep up with an intensive and bilingual appearance both on Instagram and Facebook. Thanks to the help of our accountant and solicitor we straightened up our legal and financial affairs and started to build national and international relationships.
Through our meetings we speeches, discussing our experiences and plans we tried to make community interaction and awareness as wide-spread as we could.
September 2018. we actively took part in the organization of the 2nd Barrier-free Tourism Day. As part of the organization board our responsibilities were volunteer registration and awareness, marketing, Facebook, press and the mobility of disabled people. One of our members, Csaba Pintér operated the Speckó special escape room during the programme.
In October 2018. we got the honor to participate in the description of Pécs city Local Equal Opportunities Program. It was a great pleasure to work with a fantastic group in detailing chapter 7 (which deals with the situation of disabled people). The final goal however is to convert these professional plans into reality with the same team.
We liked the idea of our members Alexa Dékán and we started to brainstorm on a project: what would happen if we would mark with stickers on the entry the restaurants/cafes/shops in Pécs the barrier-free access and and maybe even barrier-free toilets? It’s became a tender submitted for the Pécs Community Foundation and we have been one of the 3 winners of 17! The project is till end of August 2019, during this time we will stick the half world and we will put on the results the wheelmap.org international website too.
Also in September 2018 we made a contract with Leőwey Klára High School, so community service students can work with us. We like the kids very much and they are very useful: they can help us with translations (English class), organization, they are animators of Speckó sessions and can help in boccia trainings. Moreover apparently getting a better understanding of the disabilities world.
From 1th of November 2018 we participate in an international project. As a partner of Green-Active Social Cooperative we did the preparation of the Peer-Act Erasmus+ K2 Project. Early 2019 two members of us will participate in a one week international training in Germany and further 8 People Fist members will be trained in barrier-free tourism in Pécs. More about it here: http://peoplefirst.hu/projects/peer-act-erasmus-ka2-nemzetkozi-project/
Between 19.11.-03.12.2018. we have been involved in an international campaign from Germany. The campaign inKLOsiv called attention for barrier-free toilets. People First HU looked for Pécs locations as good example (I Love Pécs Café, Janus Business Center).
In December we have been contacted by the Kodály Zoltán High School to work with us. We are very lucky to involve more young people and can sensitize in the disabled topic.
On 7. December we closed the year with a general assembly and we discussed the plans and had even new members.
We will be even more active and consistent in 2019, however we keep it essential that the local organisations achieve goals together in collaboration!