Trinity Immigration Initiative
An Post, who supported ‘Leaders'’ a photographic exhibition compiled by the Trinity Immigration Initiative Migrant Networks, has been awarded a Chambers Ireland Award for Corporate Social Responsibility. The ‘Good Neighbour’ category award was presented by Minister for Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs, Pat Carey T.D. to Anna McHugh, Head of Corporate Communications, An Post and Dr.Ronit Lentin, Academic Leader, Trinity Immigration Initiative, at a gala dinner in Dublin on 16th April 2010. Chambers Ireland is Ireland's largest business organisation with 60 member chambers representing over 13,000 businesses.
The ‘Leaders’ exhibition showcases the contribution made by migrant networks in Ireland in rights advocacy, gender issues, health, culture, the media, and religion and highlights how these migrant networks facilitate social, cultural, and political integration in Ireland.
The exhibition opened in Trinity College in May 2009 June and, throughout the year, toured a number of busy public spaces such as Dublin City Council Civic Offices, Dublin city libraries, Dublin Docklands, and Croke Park. It is estimated that the exhibition and the associated media coverage reached 2 million members of the public.
The Trinity Immigration Initiative team led by Dr Lentin included Research Officer, Leslie McCartney and Research Assistant, Elena Moreo. Portrait photographer was Carl Czanik and PRO was Martina Byrne.
Two other companies were short-listed for awards for their innovative CSR partnerships with Trinity College – Chartered Accountants Ireland for the National Institute for Intellectual Disability (NIID) and Grant Thornton for the Trinity Access Programmes (TAP).
The Chambers Ireland President's Awards for Corporate Social Responsibility were established in 2004 to recognise the work being carried out by Irish and multinational companies to improve the lives of their employees and to enhance the civic environment in which they operate. The Awards are partnered by Business in the Community Ireland and run in association with the Department of Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs.
For further information on the exhibition and the work of the Trinity Immigration Initiative see: http://www.tcd.ie/immigration/networks. Click here to view the exhibition in PowerPoint format.
Dr Ronit Lentin, Principal Investigator in the TII Migrant Networks project (third from right) and the rest of the An Post Corporate Communication Team look on as Public Relations Officer Martina Byrne and Anna McHugh, Head of Corporate Communication An Post receive the Chambers Ireland President's Awards for Corporate Social Responsibility.
Click here to read more about this award from An Post's website. Be sure to launch the video!
A new report has been published by the Migrant Networks Project in association with HAPA - Horn of Africa People's Aid. Click here to download a copy of the report in pdf format. If you wish to order hard copy, please email Ronit Lentin.
CONCERNS ABOUT both the thrust of policy and the effects of cutbacks in the State’s provision of English language support for immigrant children have been raised in recent days both by national school teachers through the INTO and at last week’s Trinity Immigration Initiative “New Migrations, New Challenges” conference. Click here to read more.
The TII has issued a report of their findings to date in the various TII projects.
Articles about the report have appeared in the Irish Times, Irish Examiner and the Iris Independent. Click here to view copies of the articles.
TII 'Leaders' exhibition, sponsored by An Post, was been placed on the shortlist for an Award for Excellence in Public Relations. The awards were hosted by the Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA). The project was listed in the category of corporate social responsibility.
The project has was been shortlisted for a Chambers of Commerce Ireland Corporate Social Responsiblity Award. The winners will be announced in September, 2010.
Professor Robbie Gilligan, Head of the School of Social Work and Social Policy, at Trinity College Dublin and Principal Investigator of the Trinity Immigration Initiative's Children Youth and Community Relations Research Programme, has been elected President of Childwatch International Research Network. Childwatch International is a global, non-profit, nongovernmental network of 45 university level research institutions across six continents. It promotes child research for the purpose of advancing child rights and improving children’s well-being around the world. Professor Gilligan is Associate Director of the Children’s Research Centre at Trinity College which is one of the member institutions of Childwatch International.
“I am greatly honoured to serve as President of Childwatch, and to represent Ireland and Trinity College Dublin in this capacity”, Professor Robbie Gilligan said following his recent election at a meeting in New York. “It is vital to have well informed policy for children globally, especially when there are so many competing demands on national and international budgets. Good quality research is a key ingredient in the development of national and international child policy. Childwatch has an important role in helping to build research capacity in relation to children’s issues and interests, especially in developing countries. The Childwatch Network is a wonderful mechanism through which to share evidence and expertise globally. I look forward to working with my colleagues in Childwatch and our partners on the challenge of bringing more resources to building research effort and capacity in developing countries.”
Childwatch was founded in 1993 as a response from the research community to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. The Convention is the basis for the Network’s common agenda. Childwatch and its member institutions work closely with UN agencies, international and national non-governmental organisations and public bodies. It seeks to harness the collective capacity of international child researchers to identify and investigate major questions of global significance in the lives of children.
A new report on immigrant teenagers’ experience of Ireland by Trinity College Dublin researchers was presented on the 2nd of February, 2010 to the Minister of State for Integration, John Curran. The event took place in Presentation College, Warrenmount in the Liberties, Dublin with school pupils who took part in the study in attendance, together with their parents and teachers.
Commenting on the significance of the study that involved 169 migrant young people, aged 15-18 years of age across the country, TCD’s Head of the School of Social Work and Social Policy, Professor Robbie Gilligan, who led the research said: “The objective was to give migrant young people an opportunity to talk about the issues that were important to them. This research aims to contribute to public understanding of the experiences of young migrants in Ireland and help identify key issues in promoting the integration and well being of migrant youth in Ireland.”
“The primary aim of this research,” continued TCD researcher, Dr Philip Curry, “is to document and explore the experience of a range of young people who have migrated to Ireland. The experience of teenagers is particularly important for understanding integration issues. Compared to either younger children or parents, teenagers will have greater levels of contact with Irish society, especially contact of an open and unstructured kind.”
|(L-R) Dr Philip Curry, Prof Patrick Prendergast, Vice-Provost / Chief Academic Officer of TCD, Ms Jo Ahern, CEO of the Integration and Social Inclusion Centre of Ireland, Minister John Curran and Professor Robbie Gilligan, Head of School of Social Work and Social Policy.|
The study entitled, In the Front Line of Integration: Young people managing migration to Ireland was carried out by the Trinity Immigration Initiative (TII) Children, Youth and Community Relations Research Programme at the Children's Research Centre jointly and initially with Integration Ireland which has since merged with the Refugee Information Services. The new organisation formed is called the Integration and Social Inclusion Centre of Ireland (ISICI).
The findings include:
The participants generally placed a high value on education. They were highly motivated and ambitious. Typically they had strong support from their families for their studies. Many of the participants came from cultures that greatly valued deference to authority at home, in school or elsewhere.
Schools in Ireland:
Many participants came from educational systems that were very different from the one they encountered in Ireland. They were often used to traditional models of learning that place a high value on discipline and authority.
Friendships with local Irish young people were valued. However experiences were mixed with some finding it easy to make friends locally, others finding it difficult and others not particularly wanting it. Barriers to friendships with local Irish young people included perceived differences in cultural background, language and accent, differences in educational and life experience, racism and differences in attitude towards education, authority, religion and alcohol.
Many participants talked about how they encountered racism on the street from strangers (including adults), peers in school, at work and in the search for work.
The ability of young people to hold on to their cultural heritage when they migrate is thought to have significant implications for their mental well being. Through their own efforts and the efforts of their family and community the young people in this study seemed to be generally successful in maintaining their heritage cultures. Yet they were also open to influences from Irish society.
Most migrant young people came to share the family mission of wishing to improve the family’s circumstances. They were sympathetic to the challenges their parents face in migrating. Young migrants were often asked to translate and interpret for their families, a role which they sometimes found very burdensome.
Age of Arrival:
Young people who migrated to Ireland at an older age tended to face a number of challenges which those who have arrived earlier do not. They tended to have more difficulty learning the language and accent, have parents who were less comfortable in Irish society and were therefore more controlling, and have fewer friends as a result of missing out on the more stable and friendly experience of primary school.
On behalf of Integrating Ireland, Ms Jo Ahern, said that this research report would provide a much needed resource for policy and decisions makers in government and for all those who work with immigrant youth and are in fields associated with immigrant youth in Ireland. “It is very significant research and contributes strongly to our recently published guide, At Home in Ireland: An Induction Guide for Immigrant Youth and Parents,” concluded, Ms Ahern.
Extracts from the young people:
“Yeah, she surprised us because she just woke up early in the morning on Sunday morning and she was like, she had packed our boxes and everything and ‘get up we are going to meet your dad’… I thought she was messing, and we got in a taxi. All of a sudden I saw people waving, I was like, yeah I’m coming back. I was at the airport and I was like, are you serious? She was." – Male, Sub-Saharan Africa
“But here I have to be more independent because my parents are more constricted in their work and you have to stand up on your own.” – Female, Sub-Saharan Africa
“A guy actually got out of his car and said “nigger” and got back into the car and ran away.” –Male, Sub-Saharan Africa
"[Young people born in Ireland…] ask permission, but it’s like, hey mom, I’m going out, se you!" – Female, South Asia
-It’s [cultural heritage] very important.
-Yeah so you can pass it onto your children.
-It is part of who you are.
-It’s your identity. − Participants from various countries
The English Langague Support Programme's work available at www.elsp.ie has recently won the 2009 European Award for Languages (Léargas) -
Jury's comments "Feedback from involved teachers very positive about motivation of students and this is motivating for teachers...Very impressed with project...Valuable idea transferable to e.g. Gaelscoileanna." Click here for more details.
Co-Applicant Dr Peter Muhlau of Trinity College Dublin, has successfully received funding from NORFACE for a study entitled Causes and Consequences of Early Socio-Cultural Integration Processes Among New Immigrants in Europe (SCIP). This project was one of twelve projects funded from 240 outline proposals received by NORFACE under the Research Programme on Migration in Europe, Social, Economic, Cultural and Policy Dynamics funding call.
The tour of the 'Leaders' exhibition has now been completed but you can click here to view the exhibition in PowerPoint.
The Migrant Careers and Aspirations team has recently had their article Migration and Recession: Polish Migrants in Post-Celtic Tiger Ireland published in Sociological Research Online. Click here to view the article.
The third strand of the TII English Language Support Programme involves the development of a large array of teaching/learning materials that is now freely available to schools via the internet. The materials build on what IILT has already put in place, and are designed to support teaching and learning at each of the three levels of the English Language Proficiency Benchmarks, and focus explicitly on the different subjects of the curriculum.
The website is now live and may be accessed at www.elsp.ie.
The materials on this website will be added to continuously until the end of the project in 2010. In time the website will also contain organizational and pedagogical guidelines and assessment instruments.