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Free adaptation program for new immigrants available in Estonia

Juhan Tere, BC, Tallinn, 29.10.2012.Print version
Free adaptation courses and support person services for third country nationals that have come to live in Estonia in the past three years will commence this autumn, the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People reports.

The new immigrants' adaptation program supported by the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (MISA) is designed for those European third country nationals that have legally come to live in Estonia in the past three years, informs LETA.


The adaptation program is a training course commissioned by MISA and developed by Tallinn University in 2009 that is aimed at improving the socio-economic coping abilities of new immigrants in Estonia.


Different areas of basic training introduce the history, country, and culture of Estonia as well as the main customs and values of society in order to prepare the participants for entering the labor market. Information about current laws and the rights of residents in Estonia will be given and a 364-hour Estonian language course will be carried out. The adaptation program is being offered in both English and Russian and a total of 300 new immigrants will receive the support service over the two-year period.


In addition to the adaptation program, MTÜ Johannes Mihkelsoni Keskus (JMK) will offer the support person service on an on-going basis until the end of November 2013 to up to 60 new immigrants by support persons specially trained in 2011.


"The main task of support persons is to be a contact point for the participants by introducing language learning opportunities, explaining how social and health care services are provided and the specific characteristics of Estonian culture and by giving advice when they are applying for necessary documents," commented the project manager of JMK Juhan Saharov.


According to Saharov, new immigrants are offered an average of 22 hours of consultation per person and collective consultations are also offered. If necessary, the support persons can also provide psychological support for the new immigrants.


MISA has made adaptation courses available to almost a hundred new immigrants since 2009, though the support service to third country nationals is being offered for the first time.

MIS) has supported six media projects with almost 470,000 euro, the objective of which is to express the topic of integration in Estonia. The assessment commission decided to support the multimedia project "Live to the fullest" from Diafilm OU, the television project "Ida-Viru County News" from AS TV3, the special newspaper series "A closer Estonia" from AS PR Pohjarannik, the print media project "Compatriots" from MTU Lead, the television show series "In live, tonight" from Balti Video OU and the project "Integrating media" from the Estonian Public Broadcasting.

The "Live to the fullest" project from Diafilm OU introduces talented and interesting people living in Estonia that have been successful in their profession. The project includes television and radio programs, articles in newspapers and the Internet and short videos on Internet portals that will be broadcast or published next year. The project partners are ETV, ETV2, Raadio 4, Den za Dnjom and Postimees.

The target group of the news program produced within the continuing project "Ida-Viru County News" from AS TV3 is primarily the Russian-speaking population in Ida-Viru County, but also the wider Russian-speaking population in Estonia. The program broadcasts the events, projects, local problems and important topics in Ida-Viru County. The programme will be aired twice a week next year on TV3+ and TV6 and via the portals and

In the framework of the project "A closer Estonia" from AS PR Pohjarannik, a four-pages insert of the newspaper Severnoe Poberezje Ekstra dedicated to travel stories to different places in Estonia, introducing various Russian language media channels and programs in Estonia and the topic of Estonian language learning will be published 12 times next year. The insert will also be made available in the Estonian and Russian language webpage of the newspaper Pohjarannik and its Russian language version Severnoe Poberezje.

The MTU Lead project introduces the life stories and achievements of compatriots via a special newspaper "Compatriots" in the county newspapers Viru Prospekt, Vooremaa and Vorumaa Teataja. The special newspaper will be published twice a month in Estonian and Russian from this October to the end of next year. The special newspaper will be published in the web versions of the mentioned periodicals.

The Balti Video OU project "In live, tonight" will once a week bring viewers a talk show where actual topics and the interests and integration of national minorities are discussed and the society's various hot spots are highlighted through debates and interviews. The program will be produced and aired in cooperation with TV3+, TV6, web page TV3 Play and the Internet portals and The programme will be broadcast from the end of this year until May of next year, and when the programme is repeated it will have subtitles in Estonian.

The Estonian Public Broadcasting will once a week bring viewers of the ETV2 channel a well-known weekly culture program called “Batareja”, which introduces the Estonian cultural landscape through interviews with creative people and introduces recent culture events to Estonians and other people that have not integrated into Estonian society. Monuments that have been erected and taken down in different times in Estonia will be introduced in the section of the program titled "Timeless monuments". The program is bilingual with Russian and Estonian subtitles and will commence in the spring season of 2013. The program will be aired again on ETV.

MISA supports media projects within the framework of the project competition "A common media field", the objective of which is to increase consumption of Estonian media by third-country nationals and persons with undefined citizenship in Estonia. A broader objective of the activity is to improve the knowledge of society, civic initiative and the awareness among Estonian nationals regarding the topic of the integration of third-country nationals and persons with undefined citizenship.

The project is being financed by the European Fund for the Integration of Third-Country Nationals and the Ministry of Culture through the state budget within the framework of the "Estonian Integration Strategy 2008-2013".

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