Pria Bhabra, Commissioning Officer (Migrant Access) talks about her recent trip to EUROCITIES with a Migrant Community Networker, Michaela Sarkozyova
Since my first trip to Brussels last June, I have visited Athens, Gothenburg and Milan – all invited by EUROCITIES and independently by Norrköping in Sweden. The most memorable was Milan where Leeds won the Sharing Cities EUROCITIES award for the Migrant Access Project (MAP).
EUROCITIES is a network which represents 130 cities across Europe. It aims to improve quality of life by sharing knowledge and good practice between cities across Europe. Leeds City Council is a member of the network, and works closely with the University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett University on EUROCITIES matters. More information is available at www.eurocities.eu/eurocities/about_us
I attended the Social Affairs Forum in Lisbon on 4th April 2017, and was invited to present MAP and share good practice through speed networking sessions as well as an additional two days at the Roma Inclusion Task Force meeting. This trip was exciting because EUROCITIES invited a Migrant Community Networker of the MAP project to participate at this meeting.
Michaela Sarkozyova who is Slovakian Roma commented:
“I didn’t really know what to expect but was asked to prepare a presentation about my journey as an EU migrant in Leeds. I was very surprised but very happy to know that cities in Europe have created this group to improve the life of Roma. I really didn’t know anything like this existed and many cities care about us. I was texting my family and friends back home to tell them what we were discussing and that we are recognised as a community who needs a lot of support to build trust and participate. Everyone was very friendly and welcoming and I think I impressed everyone! I was interviewed too and met lots of new people I will keep in touch with. Thank you to Leeds City Council and EUROCITIES for the best opportunity I have had”.