On Friday, March, 2016, the new ambassador of Switzerland to Ukraine GUILLAUME SCHEURER met young civic activists – participants of various exchange programs and internships in Switzerland. The participants of the program “Young Generation will Change Ukraine” have been invited, they investigated and have been studying the experience of this country during 2014, 2015 and 2016.

The representatives of the Institute for Political Education, Ukrainian Schools for Political Studies and YGWCU programs of Bohdan Hawrylyshyn Charitable Foundation were among the invited guests. The meeting was divided into three parts: presentation of the participants and their organizations; questions answers session with the Ambassador and small talks.

10382651_699171743555826_8284525477277414503_nI. Presentation of the Institute for Political Education (IFPE). This is a Non-governmental organization, which celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2016. Throughout the projects of IFPE more than 6000 people took part in various trainings on civil and political education and governance.

Another interesting program that was presented was “MANUFACTURE OF EUROPEAN POLITICS“, which took part last year (2015). So it was a combination of Ukrainian education (meetings and workshops) and Swiss experience that provided an opportunity to see the contrast and encourage participants to further work for the development of civil society.

WP_20160311_13_52_28_ProII. The presentation of the Bohdan Hawrylyshyn Charitable Foundation. The representatives of the Association (13 participants), who participated in the “Young Generation will Change Ukraine” Program in different years, shared their overall impression and knowledge from areas of their studies in Switzerland. The members of the Association focused on the issues such as: decentralization; controversial questions in the experience of Switzerland and Ukraine; power delegation, fragmentation of communities; Union Ministries (only 7 Ministers); protection of minorities; and fair competition.

After getting acquainted with the participants of the meeting and hearing their questions, Mr GUILLAUME SCHEURER gave such proposals and comments on what he heard.

Deputies should not be isolated and treated as “Gods”, who live somewhere high on the Olympus – Verkhovna Rada. In Switzerland, it is easy to cope with this problem, the being a deputy is just a part-time job. Each of them has their own profession (e.g doctor, an engineer, a programmer) and these occupations are their main income sources. However, they face and cope with the problems of society every day.

In order to train the youth and to form the political elite a Youth Parliament can be created, especially, in areas where new generation can learn how to debate in practice, listen to the opponent and find the compromise. Subsequently, these people can become the deputies of Local Councils and the Verkhovna Rada.

Decentralization is – an important, difficult but possible. You can look at the experience of France, where everything has been always subordinated to the center – Paris, but now the government distributed its responsibilities.

Coordination of rights and obligations at the municipal level should exist: “Every problem should be resolved at the lowest  possible level” – how to introduce it in Ukraine (what is the responsibility –in the communities, at the municipal, regional, national level).

12822133_699176540222013_1667384447_nQUOTES FROM THE AMBASSADOR:

Ukraine had enough revolutions, now it is the time to govern.

There should not be either permanent winners, or temporary losers, they must substitute each other in order to have a progress.

We must destroy the wrong level of false expectations to receive changes and progress.

Ukraine is – an ancient nation in the young country.


* For prepearing the material Bohdan Hawrylyshyn Charitable Foundation thanks to Anastasia Boyko and Daria Karkunova (the members of program Young Generation will Change Ukraine, Switzerland, 2016)