Mikiel Anton Vassalli College kicks off Easy Towns European project

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Mikiel Anton Vassalli College kicks off Easy Towns European projectThe Mikiel Anton Vassalli College is the national network of specialised schools for Visual and Performing Arts Education in Malta and Gozo.

These specialised schools that form the network of schools within this newly set-up College, are the Malta School of Art, the Malta School of Drama and Dance, the Malta School of Music as well as the Gozo Visual and Performing Arts School. Almost 4,000 learners are currently registered in these schools.

The College is a partner in the Easy Towns II project co-funded by the Europe for Citizens Programme of the European Union.

Last month, the Mikiel Anton Vassalli College organised a kick-off meeting in Malta for the partners of the EasyTowns project hailing from other 11 European cities.

EasyTowns, an acronym which stands for European Accessible Sustainable Young TOWNS is a two-year project which was born following the success of the EasyTowns I project.

The meeting in Malta, attended by around 40 European delegates, included a conference on “Cultural Heritage and its contribution to create inclusive Societies.” The specialised schools within the Mikiel Anton Vassalli College were the protagonists in this conference

“This is specifically because we believe that the visual and performing arts are a good tool or medium to bring people together and create inclusive communities in our towns. So much so that our schools demonstrated good practices of how learners in any of the arts discipline are actually contributing towards this” stated the Head of the College Network Mr Victor Galea, while thanking all collaborators taking part in the conference attended by over hundred individuals.Mikiel Anton Vassalli College kicks off Easy Towns European project“The contributions from Heritage Malta, the Malta Arts Council, The Human Rights and Integration Directorate from the Ministry for EU Affairs and Equality and the Migrants Unit within the Ministry for Education & Employment enriched this event,” said Director General of Education Mr Stephen Cachia in his address.

He explained how the Visual and Performing Arts Education play an important role both in the general education of society but also in the social aspects, particularly inclusion.

In line with the conference the delegations also had the opportunity of witnessing the skills of the students of the various schools by means of an animated tour of Valletta and a dance programme organised by the Malta School of Drama and Dance, object drawing on site by students of the Malta School of Art and musical numbers by the clarinet ensemble from the Malta School of Music.

While on their stay in Malta, the EasyTowns II delegates paid a courtesy visit to the President of Malta at San Anton Palace.

“We are impressed by the openness and sincerity of Her Excellency Marie Louise Coleiro Preca when she spoke to us about Universal Human Rights. We are more impressed by the message the President of Malta left us with, basically to promote peace and inclusion in Europe not by any “marketing machine,” but by giving witness, through our deeds and projects, and show our communities that it is possible to live together in peace,”said Bernadette De Cat the project coordinator from the town Heist-op-den-Berg in Belgium.

“Sports and the Visual and Performing Arts are a good medium to achieve this…And we saw very good practice in Malta especially through the Specialised Schools in Visual and Performing Arts,” she added.

The Malta Police Band performed to the delegates during their farewell and the organisers said that “this helped the delegates to depart Malta with even more positive impressions on how the Mikiel Anton Vassalli College is managing to collaborate with so many institutions including the Malta Police Band.”

Photos attached: EasyTowns II delegates with the President of Malta;Inclusive Societies L to R: Stephen Cachia DG Education, Victor Galea Head College Network, Godwin Vella Heritage Malta; Performance by young learners from the Malta School of Music during conference; Performance by Young learners from the Malta School of Drama & Dance and Still life Painting demo by learners from the Malta School of Art during conference

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