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The LLAPSI+ Project Conference

The Foundation for Educational Services (FES) has worked together with the Migrant Learners’ Unit (MLU) since 2018, to organise 12 Making Friends Bringing Friends (MFBF) Clubs in 6 different Klabb 3-16 Centres. The MFBF Clubs were an afterschool creative initiative with the aim of providing an opportunity for newcomer learners to work together and strengthen the relationship between different cohorts including EU nationals and the hosting community. 

On 10th November 2021, MLU organised the LLAPSI + Project Conference, where the various actions within the LLAPSI+ Project were discussed, including the MFBF Clubs. Guest speakers on the day were the Minister for Education, the Hon. Dr Justyne Caruana, and the Parliamentary Secretary for EU Funds, Hon. Dr Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi. Both referred to the importance of education, which translated into the Language Learning and Parental Support for Integration (LLAPSI and LLAPSI+) Projects.

1. Minister Justyne Caruana.jpg ​​Minister for Education, Hon Dr Justyne Caruana, (photo above) and Parliamentary Secretary for EU Funds, Hon. Dr Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi (photo below), delivering their introductory speeches at the conference.
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The LLAPSI+ Project Conference has helped to further appreciate the importance of the service offered by FES with the MFBF Clubs, as part of a much bigger project with far reaching benefits. These benefits do not refer only to the number of students reached, but also in terms of the educational and social impact on the students and on their families. The LLAPSI and LLAPSI+ initiatives provided also leverage for the schools in the path of creating a integration programme for the migrant students. The educational aspect of the students who attended the MFBF Clubs was facilitated and enhanced by peer socialisation within a sphere of transcultural exchanges of ideas and traditions. The mingling of different cultures and beliefs within this club helps to drop differences by the wayside, and builds a common ground of understanding and appreciation.  The collaboration between FES and the Migrant Learners' Unit thus proved useful at promoting inclusion between Maltese, European, and Third Country Nationals. A total of 213 students took part in this initiative. 

Ms Jane Farrugia Buhagiar and Mr Daniel Meilak.jpg
Ms Jane Farrugia Buhagiar and Mr Daniel Meilak, delivering their presentations about the Project Actions

The MFBF Clubs were just one of the actions
within the LLAPSI+ EU co-funded project which sought to provide opportunities and services to support the inclusion of learners and their families coming from migration. In fact, the MFBF Clubs were part-financed by the European Union through the project LLAPSI+ (MT/2016/AMIF/4.01). The key speakers Ms Jane Farrugia Buhagiar, Mr Daniel Meilak, and Ms Miriam Consiglio gave extensive presentations about the Project Actions, focusing on:
  • Language learning as a means of Inclusion and Integration
  • The summer intensive language courses titled ‘Language to Go’
  • Teaching and Leaning Resources
  • The MFBF Clubs
  • The Community Liaison Team and Psychological Support
  • The refurbishment of the MLU building

Miriam Consiglio.jpg
Ms Miriam Consiglio delivering her speech about the ‘Language to Go’ initiative, focusing on the summer intensive language courses.
The conference came to a close with a number of comments from the participants who included various stakeholders, such as Heads of College Networks, Heads of Schools, Community Liaison Team members, and partnering entities amongst others. The encouraging comments and the insightful experiences were a testament to the positive impact on the students, on their families, and on the school community as a whole.
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​​The presentation focusing on the MFBF Clubs.