International Organization for Migration

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Migrants are actively studying Bulgarian language in Sofia

Within the framework of the project “Training and Counselling of Legal Migrants, Asylum Seekers and Beneficiaries of International Protection” funded by the European Union and the budget of Republic of Bulgaria under the National Programme for Bulgaria of the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund 2014-2020. IOM Bulgaria organizes Bulgarian language courses for legally residing migrants and asylum seekers. In Burgas the migrants in the first 2 level A1 groups have already completed the course and received their certificates. Meanwhile, migrants are actively studying Bulgarian in Sofia as well.

Bulgarian language courses were launched in Sofia at the end of March 2019. Currently, 60 participants are studying in 4 groups of 15 people each in levels A1 and A2. The participants in these first groups are citizens of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Iran, Armenia and other countries. The courses are taking place at a very central and convenient location in the centre of Sofia – the Armenian Cultural House near the Serdika metro station. The convenience of the location is a key reason for the high attendance rate of the courses. The classes are completely free, which additionally helps the strong interest in the programme.

Each participant receives a Bulgarian language proficiency certificate for the particular level after they have successfully passed an exam at the end of the course. This is extremely important for most of the participants who not only need to master the language and upgrade their current knowledge but also to possess a document that proves their command of the language. This document is accepted by potential employers as an additional reference included in their job applications. Participation in Bulgarian language courses supports the successful adaptation and socialization of the migrants, since good command of the language of the host community is one of the main elements, through which the cultural and social integration of third country nationals, who live and want to stay here, is achieved.

New courses are planned to start at the end of May and beginning of June 2019. Enrolment in courses planned to start in September 2019 has also begun.