Sustainable Space for Participation and Engagement - Stimulating the Mother Centers in Bulgaria and SerbiaSustainable Space for Participation and Engagement - Stimulating the Mother Centers in Bulgaria and SerbiaBulgaria Roma MCSustainable Space for Participation and Engagement - Stimulating the Mother Centers in Bulgaria and Serbia

Our motivation

We want to try to renew the Mother Centers in Bulgaria and Serbia first of all, because of all the wind of change that it brings to the women and their families, to their communities, to us as activists and to our supporters. The Mother Center movement has a special magic to it that brings about joy, bonding and community. It brings out life in its pure and simple form: neighbourhood ties get strengthened, there is more activity and solidarity, the area transforms into a ‘caring community’. That quality in turn is the basis for the empowerment of women, who without this unique entrance point, are a difficult to reach target group. They are challenged to bring in their competences, take ownership and grow with the other women. What happens is an informal kind of mutual adult education, civic engagement or empowerment, without being specifically or negatively labelled.
In other words, women are attracted to Mother Center work, because of its intrinsic values.
Values and principles are an important element of the Mother Center method of working. That is why we include work principles as part of our internal method of work. In addition to the German declarations and administrative obligations, we will establish a list of working principles. Based on the “Leadership Support Method” that we have used in many of the Mother Centers, we want to create a clear and open culture of trust and appreciation. In such a divers team all need to see themselves always as givers and takers, not only takers or only givers. We all have competences to contribute and lessons to learn in this process. Therefore, in the beginning of the project we want to agree on elaborating principles of communication and cooperation and on money, planning and other mundane matters. Of particular importance in this establishment of working principles is being clear on balanced partnerships. We will work with people from East and West, Roma and non-Roma, professionals and grassroots, men and women, from different socio-economic backgrounds. In this collaboration we need to find a good modus to make use of the strengths of that diversity, while respecting the inevitable differences.