Authors: Christin Tønseth, Jorun M. Stenøien
In this paper, we take a closer look at five Norwegian initiatives from the Nordic project Folkbildning Norden, which is intended to contribute to a better reception of immigrants. Our question is in what way these initiatives provide “opportunity-rooms” for inclusion. The initiatives underline the recognition of lifelong and life-wide learning by linking informal and formal elements of learning—where the “free and voluntary” are tightly coupled with the “useful and necessary”. All the initiatives create inclusion through involvement, networking, trust, belonging, and language learning. The initiatives tell us that different “opportunity rooms” might be important gateways for inclusion in various social contexts. The initiatives also allow for a further discussion about possible advantages and potential of the voluntary sector regarding increasing immigrants’ opportunities for inclusion into the society.
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