It is the duty of the Ministry of Culture to submit the concept of the relief system for youth recreational activity to the Government of the Republic by February 2016.
What is being done?
Developing the concept consists of several stages.
In the second half of 2015 we specified the terms of reference in cooperation with partners and stakeholder organisations, where:
- we prepared the schedule for developing the concept and the circle of those involved;
- we ascertained the greater bottlenecks requiring intervention;
- we specified the purpose of implementing additional support by the state;
- we developed possible support mechanisms.
In addition we have developed two roundtables with partner organisations connected with recreational activity. At the first meeting we introduced the solution developed by the steering group of the recreational activity concept. Following the roundtable we gathered feedback from the parties that participated in the discussion. At the second roundtable we gave feedback about the proposals received. In parallel with developing the concept we have met with the people of organisations connected with recreational activity and sports and cultural workers of different counties. The meetings will also continue this year. In-depth discussions have also taken place alone with the partner organisations.
In February the concept is presented to the cabinet meeting together with a memorandum, which contains a short summary of the terms of reference, more important circumstances and justifications and proposals to the cabinet for decisions.
What is the pre-story?
One of the most important aims of the coalition agreement of the Estonian Reform Party, Social Democratic Party and Pro Patria and Res Publica Union was the eradication of child poverty and creating equal opportunities for participating in recreational activity. The concept being developed is based on implementing clause 1.5 contained in the agreement “on the Formation of a Government and on the General Principles of the Action Programme of the Government Coalition” (08.04.2015).
This prescribes guaranteeing the possibility for each young person to be engaged in sports or recreational activities, for the purpose of which it is necessary to establish an integral state relief system of recreational activity.
The Ministry of Culture is responsible for the preparation of the concept of recreational activity, the Ministry of Education and Research will however be implementing it.
The proposed solutions should be partially implemented from 2017, in full a year later in 2018.
Preparing the concept did not start from so-called zero, it is important to know that:
- in 2007-2008 the Ministry of Culture developed the so-called hobby school money grant system and submitted to the Government of the Republic and the Riigikogu proposals and draft legislation for the amendment of implementation acts in the amount of support of 2000 EEK per child. The draft legislation for the Act amending the Youth Work Act and the Hobby Schools Act was withdrawn from the legislative proceedings due to the end of the composition. The great financial crisis that arrived in 2008 played its part in the failure to implement the activities,
- on 5 March 2015 the Ministry of Education and Research presented the concept of supporting the youth recreational activity to the government. Three different financing models were provided in it – universal, need-based and performance-based. The chosen support model should primarily increase youth participation in recreational activity among those, who for various reasons have so far not participated and the grant being implemented should correspond to three criteria: increase availability, diversity of options and improve quality.
Recreational activity – what is it exactly?
The Ministry of Culture uses the following definition of the material of the Ministry of Education and Research presented to the government on 5 March 2015, when defining recreational activity:
There is no precise definition for recreational activity in Estonia. Essentially recreational activity is creating possibilities for the versatile development of a young person by way of systematic, informal learning. In its meaning it is the same as the definition of youth work and the concept of informal learning is equivalent as well. In the concept however due to the wording of the programme of the government coalition the term recreational activity has been used for informal learning as well as recreational activity.