Deti a mládež
Young people from Fortuna Dormitory will learn 21st century skills
Thanks to cooperation with the Pontis Foundation, the Fortuna Shelter has obtained a unique three-year educational programme entitled OPEN FUTURE designed for young people aged from 11 to 15 years. It aims to support them to develop their potential and talents and, accordingly, focuses primarily on soft and digital skills, creative thinking and entrepreneurship. A few days ago, representatives of the city signed a memorandum with the Pontis Foundation, declaring their readiness to continue cooperating in similar activities.
The city, through its Fortuna Dormitory, first joined the programme covered by the Pontis Foundation in 2022. Over a six-month period, they tested an abridged version of the programme. The youth accommodated at Fortuna acquired knowledge that they will be able to use in their further studies or put directly into practice. The Pontis Foundation provided educational content, training sessions for youth workers, worksheets and arranged for corporate experts. The City Hall provided premises, staffing and other necessary financial and non-financial assistance. Hence, based on experience gained from the pilot testing of the programme, the programme has been up and running since autumn 2022.
“The experience with the OPEN FUTURE was interesting and mutually rewarding - we now have a trained colleague, the children have learned valuable lessons and had the opportunity to get to know different inspiring people from the business world. I am very pleased that we’re going to continue with the programme and help expand the horizons of other young people. OPEN FUTURE gives children a new outlook and new contacts through which they can grow and learn how to achieve their potential. At Fortuna, we strive to be a modern residential facility that provides comprehensive client care, including quality low-threshold services,” says Matúš Ferenčík from the Social Affairs Department of Bratislava City Hall.
The programme is designed for children aged 11 - 15 years. Children were enrolled in the autumn and a group was formed that will participate in the programme twice weekly on a regular basis. The after-school personal development programme should be attended continuously over a three-year period. During the programme, the children will acquire communication skills, learn conflict resolution, be guided to think analytically, improve their critical thinking and enhance their digital skills. The programme also involves volunteer university and college students who support young people in acquiring 21st century skills.
As part of the implementation of the programme, the Fortuna Dormitory will also gain an innovative co-working centre. The premises were professionally renovated by the YIT company, which the Pontis Foundation connected with the Fortuna Dormitory, and the renovations were financed by the city.
The importance of cooperation and creating opportunities for all children and young people was stressed by the representatives of the Pontis Foundation and the capital city in January 2023 by signing a memorandum of cooperation. “Together with Bratislava City Hall, we would like to ensure the long-term sustainability of the programme and create a space for young people to explore their talents, skills and potential. We want to encourage them to believe that they can change the things they want,” says Miriam Šelepová, Programme Coordinator at OPEN FUTURE from the Pontis Foundation.
About OPEN FUTURE
OPEN FUTURE is an after-school programme for young people aged 11 to 15. The focus of the project is to create innovative clubs where we provide primary school pupils with a three-year high quality programme to develop entrepreneurship, digital and soft skills. The first OPEN FUTURE Centre was established in 2019 in Trnava, with the second opening in September 2021 in Zvolen. The Fortuna Dormitory is the first instance in which the programme was not solely managed by the Pontis Foundation. The successful cooperation with the city has shown the possibility of spreading OPEN FUTURE to as many children across Slovakia as possible.