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Kaláka: “…with love and responsibility”

Posted by on Mar 19, 2017 in Stories | Comments Off on Kaláka: “…with love and responsibility”

“We need to participate in the community’s life with love and responsibility.”

Unitarian Gazette February 2017We love hearing success stories from villages that have benefited from Unitarian Kaláka matching grants. This February, the newspaper, Unitárius Kozlony (Unitarian Gazette), published a story about Torockoszentgyorgy (Coltesti) and the village’s kaláka effort to build a new community hall. Unitarian donors helped fund the building of the foundation for this new building, the first step in a multi-year construction effort. (Read more about the project here.)

Our partners in Transylvania, SzKA (Odorheiu Secuiesc Community Foundation in Romanian), sent us the Unitárius Kozlony story and kindly translated a few passages from the Hungarian. Here is what two volunteers who worked on the project had to say about the importance of kaláka in their village.

A Labor of Love

Labor of love in Torockoszentgyorgy

“We need to participate in the community’s life with love and responsibility. It is a pleasure to see happy people working together. We have to maintain the congregation’s values. Our forefathers did the same. The foundation and the building that will grow up on it will manifest our work, our effort, our desire to live. As long as our health and energy will permit, we will be there in kaláka projects. We will help, and we will train and encourage our grandchildren to do the same.” –Miklós Nagy, retired, bricklayer in Torockozsentgyorgy

“We are so glad that this is a success story. Working together was a joy for us. It was an occasion to listen to each other’s opinions, to speak to each other, to make jokes, and we can be happy with the results.” – Sándor Nagy, caretaker in Torockozsentgyorgy

Participation Matters

When a village commits to a kaláka effort, the benefits are deeply felt in the fabric of the community. We hear this over and over again from the villages we work with. It seems that “love and responsibility” are pillars of civic engagement wherever you go in the world. And success stories like this one are what inspires us at Unitarian Kaláka to participate.