Beth Blackwood January Update

  A photo of my Hungarian family and me after    Sunday    lunch.

A photo of my Hungarian family and me after Sunday lunch.

Hello all!

January was a long and cold month here in Szarvas and I can't say that I am sad to see it leave; however I am looking forward to many exciting things in the next few weeks, including our Lenten retreat.

Even in dark, cold (and sometimes snowy) Hungarian winter, I've seen a lot of positive interaction between the communities that the YAGM program serves. I have seen powerful change happening in the lives of young Roma students through an NGO and art school north of my city (check out the Real Pearl Foundation if you're interested in hearing more). I have met with leaders of a volunteer network that fosters service as a means to fight antigypsyism in the European Union. And I have started my own 6 week lesson plan at the high school where I teach on racism in the local community, which you can read more about on my blog.

Sometimes it can feel like Eastern Hungary is spraying weed-killer on the grassroots effort of combating antigypsyism, but this month I have seen a ton of support both from NGOs in Hungary and the YAGM program. Through the darker days I am constantly supported by my Hungarian friends here and my amazing network back in the US. Thanks again for all that you do. I appreciate you all so much!


Beth Blackwood

YAGMSt. Paul's