Community Mentoring and Peacebuilding in Malta (CMP)
The Foundation for Shelter and Support to Migrants (FSM) and the Third Country National Support Network (TSN Malta) are implementing training programme on mentoring, peacebuilding, and community methods for supporting people to improve their basic skills in communication, language and literacy for employment. This project is funded through the Voluntary Organisations Project Scheme managed by the Ministry for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties.
The aim of this project is to train migrants and their communities to develop their own mentoring and support skills and programmes for helping vulnerable persons integrate in society through the provision of mentoring and support. The project will provide learning and support tools, based on community methods, that participants can use to start their own mentoring programmes to provide employment and social support, to promote literacy, and to help people to improve their language, IT and communication skills, as well as acquire cultural knowledge.
The project will also train migrants in peacebuilding, and on how one can analyse and resolve cultural conflicts. Participants will find space to organise their own cultural events during the project, based on these principles. They will also have the chance to work with migrants from other cultures, and to develop cross-cultural activities.
The training programme, as indicated in the respective document with the programme schedule, is developed as a continuous programme starting in July 2016, and ending in May 2016. Participants can attend the whole program, but in the case of communities and organisations different members can attend different training components so that the group can work as a team following the principle of collective leadership.
The participants will learn how to map conflict and investigate the role of power in conflict escalation, conflict resolution and transformation. They will analyse the relationship between human rights and conflict, and the particularly study of role of peacebuilders and the methods they use to bring peace. They will be exposed to books on peace and conflict, and will be given the chance to discuss conflicts that are close to them using the frameworks provided.The training will include the role of culture in building peace between groups, and in developing community cohesion, but wich at times causes power imbalaces in a group. The participants will be able to identify and discuss these elements in culture, identifying ways by which particular groups and individuals may experience social exclusion through certain social norms and cultural practices. They will be given the chance to organise cultural activities that promote peace while reducing social exclusion of disadvantaged members of their own, or others’ communities.
SOCIAL ASSESSMENT TOOLS:
In this training the participants will learn about the importance of social assessment/research tools in understanding the social realities of vulnerability, disadvantage and social exclusion, in order to develop evidence-based solutions.They will learn about simple techniques for developing an evidence based report, including different types of research/assessment methods, methods for archiving analysing and achiving research, different interview techniques, research writing/reporting, needs assessment and diverse evaluation techniques.
The participants will learn how to use these tools themseleves to analyse social aspects of the community, by investiganting a specific issue related to the areas of volunteering, basic skills, culture and peace.
In this training the participants will learn the principles and basics of volunteering, its building blocks and purpose in society. They will discuss the benefits of volunteering culture, and the factors that inhibit this culture. The training will explore methods by which wolunteering culture can be improved in the community, and tools that support leaders to recruit, train and manage volunteers. The subject will explores aspects of volunteering such as awareness raising, empathy education and advocacy on community issues.
The participants will be undertaking a practical assignment to promote volunteering in their community, and train a core group, and to develop a plan for the management of this group, addressing the need for continuous motivation as well as re-recruitment and re-training.
In this training the participants will learn about the different types and uses of mentoring programmes, and why they have been successful in community development projects in diverse areas such as education, employment, disability, youth, parenting and particularly with groups at risk of social exclusion. They will explore the responsibilities and qualities of a successful mentor, the principles and benefits of mentoring, and the tools required to build a strong mentoring programme in the community.
The participants will be required to develop a mentoring programme for their own community, recruiting, selecting and training volunteers as mentors. They will use the tools they learn form the other training workshops to organize and implement these activities, and to resolve family and group conflicts that may arise, re-suface or escalate regarding any of these activities. They will be using the mentoring and peacebuilding (cultural) activities to zoom in and out from specific family and individual situations to community issues, to further explore possible solutions to emancipate the community as a whole, as well as members of the community as individuals, families and groups.
TOOLS FOR IMPROVING BASIC SKILLS:
A) Language and Literacy.
Participants will be introduced to educational resources and techniques one can use in a community to support disadvantaged persons in learning a language (such as English and Maltese). The language of focus will be English, since it is a language one can use to continue self-learning using accesible online tools, however these techniques should be applicable to other languages, especially Maltese as well as the languages of the participating nationalities.
Educational resources to be used by participants in their community activities will be translated before printing or publishing. Participants will learn how to perform simple testing/assessment individuals on their languages and literacy skills, to decide on which tools to use in relation to this assessment, and to use simple methods for helping such individuals to improve these skills.
B) Basic Information Technology (IT).
Participants will be introduced to IT resources and techniques one can use to support disadvantaged persons in exploring and using IT in self-learning, in searching for information, jobs and netwroks that can be resourceful to the individual and their families and communities.The course should be basic enough for participants to understand, however should allow for the development of online study, communication, information, research, network and organizational sills that can be used to support disadvantaged persons to start using basic IT for learning and for meeting other needs to improve their independence and integration in Malta.
Participants will learn how to perform simple testing/assessment individuals on their IT skills, and to use the educational resources compiled by the trainer together with simple methods for helping such individuals to improve their IT skills.
C) Cultural Exchange.
In this workshop participants will be introduced to relevant educational resources, and trained on how to use these resources to empower migrants to understand other cultures, their diverse histories and systems, such as legal, political, health and social systems. Participants will learn about the different techniques one can use when introducing individuals and groups to new cultures, focusing on Maltese culture in particular. They will discuss issues of culture that are usually difficult to discuss in a cross cultural setting, such as cultural practices tied with death and funerals, marriage and dressing.
Participants will explore ways by which one can empower certain communities and individuals that are resistant to change, to open up and learn from new cultures. Similarly, they will explore ways by which they can empower introvert individuals, or persons who feel their culture may be inferior to others, to appreciate and talk about their culture in the context of learning. Participants will be able to introduce individuals and groups to basic Maltese culture through this workshop.
D) Employment and Social Support.
In this workshop participants will be trained on methods one can use to assist disadvantaged individuals to find employment and social support. Participants will be exposed to the tools one can use to help persons improve their employment skills,whether existing or new skills. They will learn how to use interviewing skills to build the profile of individuals, and how to market these skills in order to find employment opportunities for such persons.
Participants will also learn about systems of support in Malta, such as the Employment and Training Corporation (ETC), the social welfare agency APPOGG, and other agencies, homes and departments that can assist individuals at risk. They will learn about a variety of risks that vulnerable persons may be exposed to, and how and where to refer such persons for further assistance. Finally, they will learn how to monitor such persons, and how to develop a system of individual, family and community support in order to help the individual develop their capacity to mitigate these risks.