European students with a national minority background are invited to visit the Danish-German border region and stay at a Danish Folk High School, Jaruplund Højskole, for 13 weeks, 29th March to 28th June 2020 – the year of the 100th anniversary of the Danish-German border.
The project Minority Changemaker Programme is an initiative of the Danish border Association, Grænseforeningen, which also sponsors the project with 270.000 Euro. Jaruplund Højskole situated in a green area in the outskirts of Flensburg, Germany, offers education and accommodation to the European students that will be part of this special Nordic concept for adult education that generally does not grant academic degrees. However, through this project the students may obtain 15 ECTS-points for further studies. Project partners are also the University of Southern Denmark and Youth of European Nationalities (YEN).
Knud-Erik Therkelsen, the general secretary of Grænseforeningen, says:
“The national minorities in Europe are struggling to preserve their identity and for minority rights in the EU. We strive for the national minorities to gain higher priority on the European agenda and sincerely believe that the European youth must be engaged to achieve this goal.”
“2020 is a special year in the Danish-German border region and the right time to invite young Europeans to this special place in northern Europe. The Danish-German minority model and the history of this region, which has moved from conflict to living peacefully together, will be part of the curriculum.”
Wienke Reimer, project manager of Minority Changemaker Programme, says:
“Through YEN, I am already in contact with many European students who are excited about this project. Being a part of a national minority as I am, you know how important it is to get together with others who are occupied with minority issues and the future of Europe. Minority Changemaker Programme makes this happen in 2020, and I am looking so much forward.”
In order to prepare the students for their stay at the Danish Folk High School in 2020, a series of workshops, Minority Labs, will be arranged in five cities in Europe throughout 2019. Also, extracurricular activities such as Roskilde Festival and The People’s Meeting on Bornholm are included.