Municipalities of Torres Vedras in Portugal, Argostoli in Greece and Salford in the United Kingdom have been awarded the Dosta! Prize by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe during its 41st Session, for their initiatives promoting the integration of Roma and Travellers.
John Warmisham (United Kingdom, Soc/G/PD), Congress Rapporteur on Roma and Travellers presented the initiatives of the Dosta! Prize winners. The first place went to the Portuguese municipality of Torres Vedras, which developed a unique plan enhancing cohesion between local communities and Roma. The second place was awarded to the Greek municipality of Argostoli for improving living conditions of the Roma community, increasing children’s school attendance, as well as providing housing and health care support to the Roma population on Kefalonia island. The British Salford won the 3rd prize for implementing an educational exhibition titled “Young Roots Heritage Lottery Irish Traveller Wagon Project: Bringing Heritage Alive!” exploring the traditions, culture, heritage and identity of the Irish Travellers.
Congress President Leendert Verbeek congratulated the winners for their commitment to the inclusion of Roma and Traveller communities and stressed that the Congress fully subscribes to the positive messages of the Dosta! Campaign. Congress will continue the fight against prejudices and misconceptions about the Roma community and will continue to promote the unique contribution of Roma to European Cultural Heritage.
“Dosta” means ”enough” in a variant of the Romani language spoken in the Balkans. It is also the title of an awareness-raising campaign of the Council of Europe which aimed to bring non-Roma people closer to Roma by breaking down the barriers of deep-rooted prejudices and stereotypes.
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