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ERR News - While a report released by Children's Ombudsman Indrek Teder last month found that 45,000 children in Estonia were living below the absolute poverty line last year, nearly half of that total, or 22,000, had to make do on less then 69 euros ($90) per month, reported Eesti Päevaleht. Statistician Ene-Margit Tiit told the newspaper that the definition of "absolute poverty" was a political decision, with each country determining where to draw the line on what it considers the minimum needed to cover basic human needs.  In Estonia, the line is set at 174 euros ($227) per month for a person living alone, and in the case of households, 87 euros ($114) per month per child. The report commissioned by Teder's office revealed that an additional 18,000 children were at risk of absolute poverty, putting the number of children threatened by poverty at 63,000, or one fifth of the nation's total.  

 

PRESS RELEASE  3/19/2012    Dear Estonians and our friends all over the world!!  Estonians from San Fran-cisco and West Coast invite you to join us for the West Coast Estonian Days (LEP) and the world-wide ESTO joint festival from June 28th to July 1st 2013.   Over the years LEP and ESTO goals have always been to connect Estonians in  foreign countries and to preserve Estonian culture and language. The keyword of  the event in 2013 is “connect” which means to connect everybody and everything  related to Estonia. The official program starts with a gorgeous and formal evening  gala show. The guest performer will be our beloved Principal Dancer of San  Francisco Ballet, Tiit Helimets, who will promote our event goals and will introduce  Estonia to San Francisco. 

 

 

ERR News - At their meeting in Washington on March 27, Secretary of State of the US Hillary Clinton and Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said that the two countries will co-chair a new working group that will support the development of new democracies. According to a Foreign Ministry press release, Clinton proposed to Paet that the countries jointly direct the new initiative - Leaders Engaged in New Democracies (LEND) - because Estonia's activities in supporting new democracies have been "visible and effective." 

 

 

Dear friends of Estonia living abroad, we are glad to inform you that once again, the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (www.meis.ee, hereinafter Foundation) will hold an Estonian language camp for young people of Estonian origin living outside of Estonia. These camps have been held since 2000. Estonian language camps for youth of Estonian origin are  part of the national “Compatriots Programme 2009-2013” which is designed to support Estonians living outside of Estonia and promote cooperation. The language camps are held in Estonia and are supported by the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Education and Research. In summer 2012, there will be three separate camps for children between the ages of 12 and 17.

 

On Saturday, April 14, 2012, 3 PM at the New York Estonian Culture Days at the New York Estonian House. THOMAS PALM, Ph.D.  Estonia: a personal historic overview: Why does a choir of 25,000 people sing about insects? The role of location in national history -- 700 years of occupation? The beginnings of Estonian identity and nationalism: the role of choral music, and more.    Thomas Palm is a retired professor of economics from Portland, Oregon, where he taught at Portland State University for over thirty years. He was born in Tallinn, Estonia, but spent much of World War II in Germany.

 

Automobile magazine´s December 2011 issue published a sidebar by Jamie Kitman to the story Writer´s Blog about Margus H. Kuuse of Estonia (page 88). Margus-Hans Kuuse (Tallinn, Estonia) is the oldest (68) automobile journalist, historian and author on a huge territory which until 1991 was known as the USSR. He was called by his Western colleagues the auto missionary of the USSR, which he was. In sense he is a world record holder in automotive journalism. A bold statement? Please read on.

 

March 9 marks the day when, sixty eight years ago, Tallinn was caught in the crosshairs of Soviet long-range bombers.   In remembrance of victims of the attacks, Ambassador and Mrs. Polt attended a memorial candle-lighting at St. Nicholas Church, one of the thousands of buildings destroyed in the 1944 raid. By tradition, the city’s church bells will start tolling exactly at 19:15, marking the moment when the first wave of bombers arrived, and candles will be lit along Harju Street in the Old City. The attack is tragic both in its devastating loss of life and its military inefficacy.  As many as 300 Soviet bombers dropped a total of more than 3,000 explosive and incendiary bombs on Tallinn, leveling one-third of the city and devastating the citizenry and culture of Tallinn. More than 400 people—the vast majority of whom were non-combatants—were killed, and another 650 were injured. As many as 20,000 were left without shelter in the midst of Estonian winter. In addition to St. Nicholas Church, the Estonia Theater, the city’s synagogue, and the Tallinn City Archives, which housed a collection of medieval documents, were all destroyed in the bombing and ensuing inferno. Far from breaking the spirit of the Estonian people, however, the attack strengthened the already steely resolve of the populace to struggle against foreign occupation.  Today, Estonia is a strong, peaceful, and sovereign nation that remembers the past, while living for the future. US Embassy in Tallinn

 

Every language is beautiful, if it's special to you. And an avenue into a culture in which you feel good. It could be the language of your childhood, the language of those dear to you and/or the language(s) that you associate with something intrinsically yours. A language that speaks to you, works for you and fits you, IS (at least a part of) you. Or something you want to be closer to. What makes this attachment hard, is if you can't speak a language you enjoy as much or as often as you'd like. And it loses its ease. Like when you haven't skied in a really long time or even stretched. And you have to work on it. 

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