Mission – possible. A story about the challenges I surpassed on the way to university. Dessislava Dimitrova, Cherven Bryag “The only person you are destined to be is the person you decide to be” Ralph Waldo Emerson

To become a university student – for some this is child’s play, for others – mission impossible. The present story is not about the typical experiences of a future student, but my personal story in light of the anxieties which probably every young Roma person experiences on the bumpy road to higher education.

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On the role of childhood and on our role in it. Are there impossible things for young people from the Roma community in Bulgaria? Yordanka Yordanova, Vidin

As I’m starting my third year as a Psychology student in the Plovdiv University, my parents are finishing their secondary education via distant learning. This fact alone stands as testimony for the shift in the attitudes of Roma people in Bulgaria in the last few decades. While during my parents’ childhood school might have not been regarded as an important part of their lifepath, today education is a number one priority for people from our ethnicity.

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How a Childhood Dream Becomes Reality My story about the challenges which lead to one’s real vocation Mariela Dimitrova

Some of the kindergartens in Bulgaria are attended by a significant number of children from the Roma community. Nevertheless, the number of Roma educators is extremely low. From a young age, children need someone to look up to in order to be able to recognize their own potential; someone who can serve as their role model. Kindergartens working with vulnerable communities can support this process of building confidence and inspiting children by employing teachers from Roma backgrounds.

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Mission “Role Model” Viktoria Ivanova and Julieta Jivkova, Trakia University – Stara Zagora

“Ma’am, I want a shuvalka!” The little boy from the “Lily” kindergarten in the Hrishteni village is pulling his teacher’s sleeve as he’s looking around for the object in question with an inquiring look on his face. “What do you want, a chuval[1]?” asks the teacher, perplexed. I go into the building of the preschool, take the shuvalka and hand it amusedly to the young worker wannabe whose mother tongue is Romani.

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