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Czech Roma Spirit 2015 - last day for nominations tomorrow

29.9.2015 22:42
--ilustrační foto--
--ilustrační foto--

The Roma Spirit awards in the Czech Republic opened up their nomination process for the fifth time this past July. The mission of Roma Spirit is to appreciate the work of individuals and organizations contributing to improving the situation of Romani people in the Czech Republic.

In addition to the traditional six categories, there will be one special category focused on Romani Culture. The expert guarantor for that category on the jury will be the Museum of Romani Culture.

How to nominate candidates

Nominations to any category can be sent by any resident of the Czech Republic through a simple online form. The nominated activity or deeds must have occurred between December 2014 and the end of September 2015.

Nominations close tomorrow, 30 September 2015. The 2015 Roma Spirit awards in the Czech Republic will be given in the following categories:

  • Non-profit/non-state organizations - for implementing a specific project aimed at developing and supporting the Romani minority and achieving results, including for implementing a project aimed at educational activities for Romani children and youth outside of school.  
  • Company/Employer/Firm - for supporting projects aimed at social aid and support for the Romani community.
  • City/Municipality - for programs aimed at integrating the Romani minority into society and activities benefiting the Romani community. 
  • Individual - for long-term work contributing to improving the position of Romani people. 
  • Media - for journalists reporting either objective information or positive information about the Romani issue and for disseminating the positive legacy of mutual tolerance and understanding.
  • Good Deed of the Year - for a deed that contributed to the saving of a life.
  • Special Category:  Romani Culture - for benefiting Romani culture in the areas of art (such as dance, film, fine arts, literature, music, photography, song, theater, etc.), oral literature, the Romani language, and other creative activities undertaken by various communities and groups of Roma and Sinti in the Czech Republic. Activities that lead to the further development, preservation and reproduction of the culture of Roma and Sinti (such as benefactors, organizers of cultural events, etc.) may also nominated. An exceptional cultural undertaking may also be nominated.      

"The fifth year of the Roma Spirit awards clearly demonstrates the purpose and significance of this event. At this turbulent time, when the media are literally flooded with catastrophic news reports from all corners of the world, when our citizens are following with growing concern the sinister events in the Middle East, culminating in fear of an 'unknown' culture, each reminder of the successful collaborations between the Czech majority and Romani people are inspiring and pleasing," said Michael Kocáb, whose foundation is a co-organizer of Roma Spirit.    

"This year, for the first time, we are including the special category of Romani Culture, because there is no doubt that in precisely this area Romani people are significantly enriching our society and that most of our citizens are also aware of that," Kocáb said. Winners of the Roma Spirit award will be announced on the occasion of International Human Rights Day, 10 December 2015, once again at the Prague Crossroads.

The aim of Roma Spirit is to appreciate and publicize the commercial and nonprofit organizations, individuals and local authorities that are actively contributing to addressing difficult situations and advocating for aid to Romani people and for good coexistence in Czech society. The Roma Spirit project is the idea of Ms Lubomíra Slušná-Franz, the president of the Association for Culture, Education and Communication (ACEC), which implements the project in Slovakia.    

2015 marks the fifth time the Roma Spirit awards will be given out; they were previously presented under the name "Gypsy Spirit". The international event is being organized in the Czech Republic by the Michael Kocáb Foundation and Otevřená společnost o.p.s. (Open Society, o.p.s.) and is taking place under the auspices of Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka, Czech Minister for Human Rights, Equal Opportunties and Legislation Jiří Dienstbier, and the politician and journalist Petr Uhl.  

jal, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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