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Working together for a green,
competitive and inclusive Europe.

Welcome to the pages of the project GENDER EQUALITY FOR ROMA COMMUNITIES

This website is one of the communication channels of the GENDER EQUALITY FOR ROMA COMMUNITIES project. Its task is to inform you about the project, its individual parts and news. Our mission is to help those in need. We believe that we will succeed thanks to this project.

Working together for a green, competitive and inclusive Europe

The project called Gender Equality for Roma Communities (RRR) received a grant from Norway in the amount of €206,000. The project was co-financed in the amount of 15% contribution from the state budget of the Slovak Republic. The goal of the project is to raise awareness of gender equality and empower women in marginalized Roma communities, as well as breaking gender stereotypes and prejudices against Roma among primary and secondary school students.

Norwegian grants

Norwegian grants represent Norway’s contribution to a green, competitive and inclusive Europe. Through Norwegian grants, Norway contributes to the reduction of economic and social differences and to the strengthening of mutual relations with recipient states in Central and Eastern Europe and the Baltics. Norway cooperates closely with the EU through the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA). Together with other donors, Norway gradually provided 3.3 billion euros between 1994 and 2014 through grant schemes. Norwegian grants are financed exclusively by Norway and are available in countries that joined the EU after 2003. For the period 2014-2021, Norwegian grants amount to 1.25 billion euros. The priorities of this period are:

  • #1 Innovation, research, education and competitiveness
  • #2 Social inclusion, youth employment and poverty eradication
  • #3 Environment, energy, climate change and low carbon economy
  • #4 Culture, civil society, good governance and fundamental rights
  • #5 Justice and internal affairs

All projects are 15% co-financed from the state budget of the Slovak Republic. If you want to learn more about programs and projects financed by Norwegian grants in Slovakia, visit

Gender equality for roma communities

Through educational activities, campaigns of empowering activities to support girls and women of marginalized Roma communities, we raise awareness of gender equality and empower Roma women. Individual activities are based on the real needs of Roma girls and are formulated in their „own voice“. The unifying lines are the visibility of (Roma) women, the development of friendship between women and the breaking of stereotypes – especially stereotypes in connection with the myth of parenthood as motherhood, female (un)friendship and religious faith as a barrier to gender equality and others.

In our work, we encounter the accumulation of disadvantages especially in the case of Roma girls, and we respond to the challenges formulated in these questions:

  • How to support girls and women from marginalized communities in their dignity and rights?
  • How to approach the issue of gender equality to a community that faces extreme poverty, social exclusion, insufficient education and access to money, but above all insufficient awareness of one’s own value and one’s own life perspective?
  • How to eliminate the prejudice that gender equality is contrary to the Christian religion?

In the project, we use the help of women from the communities who are employees of the organization. We see their involvement as a benefit for increasing the effectiveness of activities, but also strengthening the position of women in the community through these workers as local authorities of role models.

Project partners

EsFem since 1999 implements activities in the area of gender equality, support of human rights of girls and women. Their work is based on the belief that gender stereotypes, like an unconscious mechanism, contribute to the barriers that prevent achieving full equality between women and men, girls and boys. The starting point of the activities is the idea that the awareness of gender stereotypes and their consequences is an unavoidable assumption during any type of work, in the area of human rights of girls and women and gender equality in general. For their work the association received multiple awards and the executed projects became a part of good practice in the area of elimination of gender stereotypes through education.  

Vyrovnávanie šancí, o. z. was founded in 2005 as a follow up to Nadácia pre rómske dieťa “Nadation for a Roma child” from 1991. Since 1993 the organization has been centred around preparing 3 – 6 year old children for a successful entrance to elementary school. An important part is, as well, the work with the parents and other family members. It offers complex intervention to families by different means. Projects, which the organization implements since 1993, were always focused on education of children and the parents’ motivation to the necessity of education. The activity “Rodinná výchova”, “Family education”, was the example for implementation in other countries which are, too, a part of the project REF (Hungary, Macedonia, Romania). Methodology and job sheets are a part of a Stimuli programme for informal education implemented by the organization.  

Women group

We implement such activities which create a safe space for women and they themselves define their needs and topics they want to pursue (sharing experiences, inviting experts on agreed topics and problems that women are interested in – these topics are the result of agreement and discussions between women themselves) thereby forming empowering women’s support groups with regular meetings.

Part of the activities is strengthening the parenting skills of mothers and fathers, while the goal is to improve inter-generational relations, stimulate and motivate children for a better future, and support understanding between women and men (fathers also participate in the activities). Another area is the development of the Christian faith as a tool for gender equality and understanding between women through work with biblical texts.


Workshops and education in schools

Are both dedicated to the issue of gender equality and the status of Roma women in Slovakia. We implement them in primary and secondary schools. The activity will contribute to the elimination of gender stereotypes and prejudices in relation to the Roma and will support the acceptance of gender equality.

The activity will not be carried out only by a frontal lecture but will use elements of experiential learning. Selected topics in the context of gender equality will be presented: women’s human rights and women’s movements (MDŽ), gender stereotypes and the position of (Roma) women (International Roma Day), gender stereotypes as a cause of violence in couple relationships and gender equality as a value for the elimination of violence on women. This area of the project is covered by our partner organization EsFem.


Workshops and popularization in communities

 Their goal is to contribute to the elimination of gender stereotypes and prejudices in relation to Roma and women and to support the acceptance of gender equality. Campaign activities have several parts:

  • Regular meetings with children in the community (also open to their parents) – Culmination of the meetings will be a community celebration of International Women’s Day and International Roma Day combined with the presentation of children’s works and activities for children but also adults from the community.
  • Calendars – As part of the children’s meetings, we will gradually prepare a wall calendar with portraits and stories of important Roma women (Roma women you (don’t) know). Illustrations for the calendar will be created by children from community centres, or students from elementary art schools. Part of the activity will be a traveling exhibition of children’s works combined with a discussion. This exhibition will be offered to schools and libraries.
  • Kvarteto (quartets) – Thecard game quartets about women is a product created within the program Vlastná izba, which is implemented by citizen association EsFem. For this project, we will create a specific quartets presenting selected saints – inspiring thinkers, artists, theologians, scientists, and politicians. Overall, the game enables to briefly introduce 32 women from different areas of social and religious life in an entertaining way, who can be an inspiration for girls and women not only from excluded communities, but also for the wider public. The decision to choose saints is based on an effort to break the myth that the Christian faith and the politics of gender equality are mutually exclusive. Saints as bearers and representatives of Christian values ​​and at the same time active (and activist) women can point to shared values ​​and contribute to mutual understanding between Christian and gender activism. We will prepare the quartets in Slovak, Romany, and English. The launching of the quartets will be part of the International Mother´s Day celebrations at the end of the project (2024)