Implementation of a new ambitious project of youth exchanges was discussed at the meeting of the Ukrainian-Polish Youth Exchange Council last week in Warsaw. The Ukrainian party of the Council was represented by Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports Mr. Oleksandr Yarema and Director of Bohdan Hawrylyshyn Foundation Mrs. Olena Bekreniova.
“Good and awaited news – Ukrainian-Polish Youth Exchange Council now works! – wrote Ambassador of Ukraine to Poland Mr. Andriy Deshchytsia who also attended the opening of the Council of June 17th, on his Facebook page.
As Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports Mr. Yarema reported in his interview to Ukrinform, open call for projects and programs for Ukrainian and Polish youth and educational organizations will be announced in early July. He stressed upon the fact that Ukrainian and Polish participants of each project should be in equal proportion of 50:50. It is envisaged that each youth project must involve at least 10 people (5 Ukrainian and 5 Poles) and it should last at least for 5 days.
Mr. Jarema noted that the range of activities within the projects of youth exchanges is broad. It will include artistic, cultural, educational, sports events, etc. “It is about increasing the activity of young people in social life, involving the exchange of young people from vulnerable groups, pormotion of the all-European values, studying Polish experience in European and Euro-Atlantic cooperation.”
“It is important that the projects submitted to the competition will be based on the principles of equal partnership and non-formal education, will involve active participation of young people in all stages of the project, management of youth projects, dissemination and implementation of their results,” – said Mrs. Olena Bekreniova.
Ukrainian organizations that will submit projects to obtain financial support to take part in the exchange program to the Ministry of Youth and Sports of Ukraine. Polish organizations will submit documents to the Foundation of the Development of Educational System which is a partner establishment of the Ministry of Education of Poland.
“For a long time cooperation between Ukraine and Poland was very fruitful thanks to public initiatives and financial support from various funds, including Bohdan Hawrylyshyn Foundation – said Mrs. Bekrenova. However, it is very promising that such an intergovernmental agreement was signed on an official level. It will really help young people to better communicate with each other, implement joint projects, strengthen intercultural dialogue of friendly countries, and among other things, promote the development of Ukraine. This is especially important now when the world is becoming global and boundaries disappear as a concept.”
(By the way, the key program of Bohdan Hawrylyshyn Foundation called “Young Generation will Change Ukraine” started from Poland in 2013. The very first group of its participants went to a study trip to Warsaw and Krakow to learn employment system. Since then about 80 participants (12 groups of 6-7 people) learned the experience of Poland to transform Ukriane.
Competition for projects for Ukrainian and Polish youth and educational organizations will continue until the end of July this year. Winners will be determined in early September during Youth Economic Forum in Krynica.
This year for the Ukrainian-Polish Exchange Program Ukraine has allocated 500 thousand UAH, and Poland – 4 million zlotys (over 1 million USD). However, the Ukrainian side is considering the possibility of increasing funding for the project next year.
All the regulations of the Ukrainian-Polish Exchange Program were discussed and set during the Youth Exchange Council meeting on June 17, 2016. The Council consists of four representatives from each country evolved.