Who is Baraka for?

Anyone who is 18-26 years old and passes the admissions process can become a member of the community. The process is aimed at establishing whether the applicant could bring some benefit to the school and the community for them. Older students, alumni, or younger teachers from the Bilgym community may apply for membership. Members of Baraka are interested in their own development, but also in helping others, the Bilgym community and its surroundings to grow. Some of the members are believers, some are not, some are agnostic, doubters or seekers. What connects them, however, is the desire to better understand themselves, the world, and the time we live in. Everyone is welcome.

Criteria

–         A member of the community must be at least 18 years old

–         A member of the community can be an adult student / a gap year student / young teacher / other

–         Psychological maturity and independence are expected from a member of the community

–        A member of the community is determined to live within the community during the school year, and take part in the compulsory program

–         A member of the community must commit to keep the order of the community (Community Rules)

–        Members of the community are expected to make a monthly financial contribution of 200 EUR. This sum covers the cost of accommodation, breakfasts, shared dinners twice a week, and any expenses for weekend trips (accommodation, travelling, and a full board). The running costs, salaries, work and mentoring support as well as the developmental program are covered by donors. However, we do realize that even this monthly contribution may exceed the limits of some applicants. We believe that finances should not be one of the reasons why not to join the community, and therefore we would also like to offer scholarships.

FAQ

Every day we start with breakfast at 6:45 am. In the morning and in the afternoon every member works on his or her own responsibilities (school classes, internship or project). On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we meet for dinner and a development or community event, which starts at 7 pm (or earlier for those who are cooking dinner) and ends at 9:15 pm. How you spend the rest of your free time during the week is your own decision.

The Baraka community program always lasts one school year. That means that we start at the end of August and finish at the end of June. We grow, work and live together, which means that we have a commitment to each other and it is needed to adjust your expectations to that.

Baraka is still in its pilot years so there isn’t a curriculum yet. However, we already know that we will put emphasis not only on personal growth but also on professional development. The studies will be in the form of workshops and discussions with different guests. During the year, our main topics will be identity (Who am I?), context (Where am I living?) and mission (What should I do with this?).

The monthly membership fee is 200 euros. The price contains accommodation in renewed spaces of Bilgym, community breakfast every day, warm dinner twice a week and community weekend events outside of Bratislava (accommodation with full board, travel costs). The remaining costs are individual, and they depend on how sparingly you live, how do you eat during the week (if you cook, eat out or choose simple meals, etc.).

Yes, it is good to have your own bed sheets and towels.

Yes, we have two WiFi routers.

Every good community is characterized by hospitality, but every household needs some time for itself too. For now, we have two evenings, and weekend events reserved for ourselves, the rest is left for discussion. Usually the rest of the residents are keen on having someone over, that way the visit is possible.

Mandatory time spent in the community: breakfast on every workday, a community evening on Tuesdays and Thursdays, one weekend event per month. In the remaining time, you won’t be forced to stay in the community. However, it is highly recommended (according to your options) and that is so because of the development of the community. The community will give you as much as you will give into it.

If you are a Bilgym or university student, you can live carelessly because your health and social insurance are paid by the state. If you are employed, these costs are paid by your employer.

If you are neither a student, neither an employee, you have to pay everything by yourself. 

Sure. We have breakfast together every work day and we eat a dinner twice a week together. The rest of the meals are left on everyone’s responsibility (you can eat in the school canteen or cook in the community kitchen. Or stay hungry.)

Here you can rest and work a lot at the same time, but the advantage is that you can do both things alone as well as with others.

Let’s look at it this way: Imagine moving to a dorm, what will you take with yourself?

No. If the community interests you but you aren’t 18 yet, try to sign up one or two years later.

The community is a part of a bilingual high school. We will talk in Slovak, but some texts and films will be in English, so you will need it at least on an elementary level. However, the members of the community won’t be chosen based on their English skills.

Absolutely! If your life goal/vision and mission is consistent with the mission of the community, it is possible to be a part even if you aren’t from Bilgym.

You need to count with the fact that you are committing to invest your time and energy into the community for 10 months. Beside mandatory community time, you will have your own project on Bilgym, called internship (you will have a supervisor to guide you). If you are a part of other projects, you might want to take this into consideration.

If you still have any questions that have not been answered above, do not hesitate to contact us, we will contact you as soon as possible. 😊