Behind the Scenes: Meet Helen

In April, SCOLA traveled to Namibia for our Country of the Month. We explored an open market to discover how Kapana, a traditional Namibian dish is made, and experienced Namibia through the eyes of locals with our Photos of the Week. Some of you may be wondering who led us on our Namibian adventure…

SCOLA provider Helen is 39 years old and was born in the town of Rehoboth, 89 km from the capital city of Windhoek. She is a start up business owner and sells ice cream.

Helen started working for SCOLA in 2013 when she was contacted by the media to see if she would be interested. She says that at first she was skeptical, thinking maybe it was a scam, but then she got a camera from SCOLA and knew it was real. Helen first started working with SCOLA for the money, but says that later on she really started to enjoy herself making On the Street Videos and sharing her home country of Namibia with the rest of the world.

Along with the Country of the Month, Helen has also been sending in some interesting material for SCOLA’s new service, Savoir-Vivre! Visit a music store in Namibia and travel the streets of and other foreign lands as you discover other cultures and experience new lifestyles. Log on for free today at www.scola.org!

Want to see where we travel to in May? Follow along online!

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Behind the Scenes: Meet Franciszek

franek_matysikFebruary was spent traveling around Poland for our Country of the Month. Our Polish provider Franciszek shared with us traditional Polish food, let us experience the cold winter weather in his country, and much more!

Franciszek’s adventure started with SCOLA a few years ago when he was asked about programming in his language. With SCOLA he found that the programs broadcast in his country were of interest to viewers around the world.

Over the years, cooperation between Poland and SCOLA have grown with Franciszek sending in more and more material. He appreciates the work he does with SCOLA and all the employees. He enjoys his partnership with SCOLA that allows him to share Polish programming with people around the world.

Follow along with our next Country of the Month: Germany!

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Save the Date: Paprika Ball Silver Anniversary

Save the Date!hungarian-scouts-costumes-3

The Paprika Ball Silver Anniversary will be held on Saturday, March 7th, 2015 in Cleveland, OH. The Paprika Ball is an annual benefit sponsored by the Cleveland Hungarian Development Panel. The 25th Anniversary Paprika Ball will be held in the historic Silver Grille, owned and operated by The Ritz Carlton, and is located on the 10th floor of the Higbee Building at Tower City Center in downtown Cleveland. The event includes cocktails, dinner, a silent auction, and dancing to the music of Harmonia. The event will start at 6 p.m. and end at 12 a.m.

The Cleveland Hungarian Development Panel (CHDP) is a non-profit organization of dedicated volunteers who recognize the need to promote and support educational and cultural ties between Americans and Hungarians.  The mission of the CHDP is to provide assistance and the exchange of ideas for Hungarian projects in the areas of commerce, education, health and human services.  Funds for the work of the CHDP are based primarily on the annual Paprika Ball and private donations.

Ticket Prices:   $200 ($100 tax-deductible), $350 ($250 tax deductible) and $500 ($400 tax deductible).  Also tables of eight starting at $2,500 ($1,700 tax deductible).

Guests must be registered by February 27th. Please call (216) 571-4686 or visit www.clevelandhdp.org for more information!

Is your ethnic organization having a fundraiser that you would like SCOLA to promote? E-mail LSmith@scola.org today!

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SCOLA Travel Journal: Week Twelve

The days are flying by as I travel around the world with SCOLA and it’s already time for my next international adventure! I log on to People and Places to try to get a feel about what country I would like to see in person next. I scroll through photos and Mersin Beach, the Cave of Heaven, and snapshots of protestors in Turkey catch my eye.

I first log on to Language Training Materials and take a look at Country Overview Videos from Turkey. Here I learn about where Turkey is located, the languages spoken in Turkey, its economy, and so much more!

I’d love to be able to chat with the locals about the photos of people protesting, so I log on to Insta-Class for some convenient, ready to use language lessons in Turkish. The service has over 450 Turkish lessons in beginner, intermediate, superior, and advanced. I fly through those and I am on my way!

To begin my adventure in Turkey I log on to SCOLA On the Street Videos. I am most curious about the photos of the protestors I stumbled across in People and Places, so my first stop is to visit Taksim Square in Istanbul. Taksim Square was recently the site of many protests, with many people showing up to support the park instead of turning it into a mall. I also learn about a series of protests that occurred last year, in which workers, teachers, doctors, dentists, and engineers all joined in on the strike. They marched around Mersin chanting and holding signs, urging the government to listen.

For my next stop in Turkey, I wanted to learn more about a lighter subject, so I talk to some of the locals about their favorite hobbies. One young girl shows me games she plays on her computer, then I watch a young photographer take shots of young children in a variety of settings.

I was able to see a few different sides of Turkey today, and because of that I consider this trip a success! Join me in my travels today by visiting www.scola.org and accessing your free trial!

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SCOLA Travel Journal: Week Eight

The changing weather in Autumn often makes me wonder about the weather people in other parts of the world are experiencing at this time of year, and what better way to satisfy my curiosity than to travel to another country and find out myself?

I head on over to People and Places to decide on my next destination and Vietnam, with its green landscapes, giant palm trees, and expansive fields catches my eye. By the looks of these photo it seems as though summer lasts all year! Surely though they wouldn’t be so lucky….I guess there is only one way to find out!

Before I begin my adventure I log on to Insta-Class to practice my Vietnamese. Did you know they have 570 ready-to-use lessons in Vietnamese alone? The lessons vary by skill level- beginner, intermediate, advanced, and superior. There is something for everyone!

Once I am feeling confident in Vietnamese I log on to Foreign Text on SCOLA’s Mobile App for some light reading material. Foreign Text offers over 160 newspapers and magazines from Vietnam, including Joke Village, Chuyen Doi, and much more.

My next step isn’t to make my luggage or wait for hours at airport security- I simply have to log on to On the Street Videos to begin my international adventure! Like I mentioned earlier, on this adventure I want to learn about the different seasons in Vietnam, so my first stop once I arrive is to chat with some of the locals about summer and the different activities people in Vietnam enjoy during the summer season. We then chat about the new school year, Autumn, and the Autumn Festival. I learn how their seasons differ compare to my own.

Remember earlier how I mentioned the green fields and giant palm trees I found in People and Places? I must learn about those on my trip to Vietnam, so my next stop is to chat with some locals about native animals, specifically flowers and local fruits, found in Vietnam.

It’s time to return to the cool fall weather, until my next adventure…Check back next week to find out where On the Street Videos takes me next!

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SCOLA Travel Journal: Week Six

It’s my sixth week traveling the world and you must be wondering…am I tired and homesick yet? No! My adventures have all been through SCOLA On the Street Videos- it allows me to travel around the globe from the comfort of my own home, at my own convenience! On the Street Videos is the perfect solution for people who want to travel the world, experience other cultures, and discover new lifestyles without the negative effects of traveling- homesickness, jet lag, and not enough funds to get you from one place to the next. Plus, you get the added perks of experiencing the world and learning new languages with SCOLA’s other great services like People and Places, Insta-Class, and so much more! Hearing about all the perks of international travel with SCOLA, I know you are wondering where I traveled to after Indonesia.
I was ready to take on a new continent, so my primary search on SCOLA was through People and Places to find a country in Africa! Colorful photos of communities, families, and landscapes in Uganda were the first to catch my eye. I’m excited to begin my journey, but I know my first task must be to learn about Uganda’s native language so I can interact with the locals and navigate with ease around the country.

My next stop before my adventure is Spoken Word. Spoken Word allows me to have convenient conversations with native speakers from around the world! The service allows me to bypass time zones and avoid long distance phone charges by leaving video messages for any of their native speakers. I leave a message for David from Uganda who speaks both Luganda and Swahili! I first send him some private messages because I am unsure about my pronunciation, once I get more confident we have some public conversations so other Spoken Word users can see and respond to our posts. David helps me with my pronunciation, words I need to know, and common mistakes language learners make in Luganda and Swahili.
David has prepared me for my trip, so I excitedly log on to On the Street Videos. My first stop in Uganda is to receive some computer training from a local resident. I figure I may have to brush up on my Swahili while I am here, which I could do with a few quick lessons in Insta-Class! Plus, the computer lessons helped me pick up a few new vocabulary words in Swahili. Once I was done with the computer lessons I felt confident that I could log on to SCOLA.org without any problems if I needed help with Swahili, so I was off to my next adventure in Uganda.

My next stop was to visit a local market. My guide at the local market taught me so much about produce in Uganda, and the products being sold at the market. Hearing about the sellers at the market got me thinking about other work people in Uganda might do, so next I talked with a local man about business, and what was needed to be successful in this country. I also had a discussion with another local man about jobs and employment in Uganda.

My conversations with the locals, my trip to the market, and my computer lessons gave me insight into daily life in Uganda, and social issues that natives face. Uganda was a wonderful destination for my first trip to the large continent of Africa, and I look forward to my return!

For now though, the only thing on my mind is where should I go next? Travel the world with me today when you log on to www.SCOLA.org for your free trial!

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SCOLA Travel Journal: Week Five

Fall has almost arrived here at SCOLA and the weather is getting cooler, I’m ready to go somewhere warm on vacation! I log on to People and Places and start searching when the colorful landscapes of Indonesia catch my eye. I’m ready to get out of my sweatshirts and long pants and into some shorts and sandals!

One of my favorite things to do when visiting a new country is converse with the locals, so before heading to On the Street Videos to travel to Indonesia, I make a pit stop at Insta-Class. Insta-Class is ready to use, multi-media language lessons produced exclusively for SCOLA by experts from around the world! The service has over 420 lessons for Indonesia that are easy for independent learners like myself to use. I log on and quickly brush up on my Indonesian. Soon I feel confident that I will be able to converse with the locals on my upcoming adventure.

My hands shake in anticipation as I log on to On the Street Videos to begin my journey. My first stop is Bali. Choosing a destination from People and Places was tough, and learning a new language on Insta-Class wore me out, so my first quest is to learn how to make a traditional Balinese dinner. The SCOLA provider gave detailed instructions that were easy to follow, thanks to the practice I received on Insta-Class! Once I eat dinner I have the energy to explore the rest of what On the Street Videos and Indonesia have to offer.

Since I was already in Bali I decided to do a quick tour. I had an excellent tour guide that showed me some of the best beaches and shops Bali had to offer. I learned a lot about Bali and was able to enjoy the warm weather I had been craving, so next up was my favorite activity: conversing with the locals!

Through SCOLA I was able to meet with a Balinese man to talk with him to learn about his daily lifestyle and work. This gave me further insight to Indonesia’s culture than any typical vacation ever could.

On the Street Videos not only allows you to explore and experience places, it also allows you to discover the locals and their lifestyles, including community and family, work and recreation, and so much more. I’m very lucky to have the service available to me, and you could too by logging on to www.scola.org for your free trial!