They don’t want to participate

Author: Workshop VLocation: EastWest Institute – PragueIvana SimikovaCounsellorDrom CenterBrnoThese people who live in the house where Drom is located: they expect a lot of help from us. And they expect it because they are not able to become active themselves. They are passively waiting for support and they want a finished product in their hands. They want [...]

I love to entertain people

Author: Martin Mistr(taped by Marketa Vaculova)Location: OstravaEven though I’m a Rom, I’ve never encountered either hatred or racial discrimination. Teachers neither laughed at me nor denounced me. My schoolmates never beat me up. Just the opposite. When I had some learning difficulties in the first grade, my teachers helped me out. My schoolmates liked me [...]

If we had a real table, real food…

The Stories Exchange Project 2000 Workshop V EastWest Institute Prague 19 June 2000 Jan Vesely Drug Prevention Program Brno We were looking for a form: how to present stories that have been gathered in the Stories Exchange Project. At first we felt like putting it on stage. So we turned to a guy from a [...]

I only worry about our clients lack of motivation

Author: Lucie ConkovaLocation: Usti mad LabemA year or so ago I had no idea what a civic association was. But starting a civic group became a kind of fashion among Roms: it brings in easy money.I work in Predlice where the population is ninety-nine per cent Romany. That’s why some sort of a civic group [...]

You really need to advertise

Author: Martina HudeckovaLocation: BrnoDenisa Lazovkova is a twenty-four year old Rom. She was not able to find a job after she finished school, so she started her own business as a hairdresser. These days it’s hard to attract new clients unless your shop is located in a visible place, possibly in the center of town. [...]

I’m laughing or crying

Author: Helena JavurkovaNational Project CoordinatorLocation: Stories Exchange Project Workshop #4EastWest InstitutePragueI spend a lot of time in the office here, calling people, receiving e-mails, calling the Mayor’s office in Brno asking when would be a good time to put the computer in and what type of cable we should use, and I feel like an [...]

A Rom here would rather do something for gadjos than for other Roma

Jan Horvath Jr.KolinA Romany woman – I won’t name her – asked us to play at a party in her restaurant. We said we would, and agreed on a fee. The party was supposed to be in exactly a week.That day we came home from work, bathed, dressed and went to rehearse. At seven in the evening people started [...]

I told him not to lie to my face

Author: Jan Horvath, Jr.Location: KolinTomás Slanina is twenty-two and lives in Kolín."I’m a graduate of hotel school, and one day I decided to go look for a job. I called about ten restaurants. Only two of them were looking for new employees, but both said that they would take me immediately. So I shaved, dressed [...]

This person I will talk to, that person I won’t

Author: Workshop VLocation: EastWest Institute – Prague[If we are going to apply methods of the Stories Exchange Project to relationships between Drom and the Romany community,] there are several Romany leaders in Brno whom we could involve. The problem is that there are groups of people that back up these leaders; they’re really like political parties. And [...]

They liked my being so honest

Author: Eva BajgerováLocation: Usti nad LabemOne sunny afternoon we had my auntie Marta over. She is sixty-seven, and one of my dead father’s sisters. Sipping soda, she was remembering her youth."Evicka, my girl, life was much different when we were kids. Often we helped out on farms in return for bread, flour, lard, etc. : [...]