Meetings of cultures – the jubilee project of Atqi Foundation.
Ethnology for children on the centennial of Ethnology at Poznań University.
'Meetings of cultures' is a project that has been carried out by Atqi Foundation since 2017. Its third edition in 2019 coincided with celebrations of the 100th anniversary of Ethnology at Poznań University. Honorary patronage over the project has been assumed by the head of Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Professor Michał Buchowski. The project has been conducted in Greater Poland Voivodeship and in the Kingdom of Morocco where the Foundation got assistance both from the Embassy of the Republic of Poland and the Ministry of National Education of the Kingdom of Morocco.
The aim of the project 'Meetings of cultures' was first to establish collaboration between schools in Greater Poland Voivodeship and a school in the High Atlas and next to expand it to the schools from the other parts of the world. Drawing from experience gained in Morocco the Foundation seeks to reach schools in hardly accessible areas. Children are encouraged to tell about themselves and their culture, to write letters, to draw pictures, to make movies and whenever it is possible to get in touch on-line. They are prompted both to seek cultural similarities and to discover cultural diversity. While working with children we draw not only from our insights acquired during the course of three editions of the project conducted in Great Poland Voivodeship and Morocco in 2017-2019, but also from our rich ethnographic experience gained during the fieldwork carried out in Morocco.
Within three editions of the project sixty interactive meetings with children took place, Poland-wide art competition 'Be ethnologist' was organized and artworks and photographic exhibitions were held. In Poland, approximately nine hundred children from twelve educational institutions took part in the project; public libraries located in Great Poland Voivodeship were engaged in the project as well.
The partner of the project on the Moroccan side was school in Imaghouden, the village situated in Atqi Valley, in High Atlas Mountains. The school and its branches are attended by four hundred and ninety seven pupils. 'Meetings of cultures' in Atqi Valley included workshops for children and movie screening organized for local community in order to show Ait Tidili Tribe over the span of twenty years; we handed down over one hundred artworks created by children from Poland as well as letters written by them and their parents. We also contributed to setting up and equipping a school library and an art studio for children.
The aim of ATQI Foundation is to work for the benefit of local communities, intercultural and intergenerational dialogue and integration of migrants with local communities. Our mission is realized through cross-sectoral and inter-institutional collaboration.