Education Never Stops: the stories of a winemaker, a physicist and a sound designer

‘Never stop learning’ is probably the main message which current world leaders and other influential figures are promoting. Education is the opportunity to thirst for new knowledge, a chance for self-realisation, for professional and personal development and for meeting new people. Together with the Erasmus + programme, Inspired interviewed three Ukrainian students, who decided to pursue a second higher education abroad and hope to motivate others with their example. Read more

Creative Europe helps protect cultural space near Kyiv

According to a survey carried out by Razumkov Centre, almost 70% Ukrainians have never left the country and 36% didn’t read a single book in 2018. ‘If people don’t want to go to culture themselves, then we bring culture to them’, says Anna Dobrova. Dobrova is the co-founder of the public organisation ‘MistoDia’, which helps develop cultural centres on the outskirts of Kyiv. Read more

EU funds sign language theatre performance in Kharkiv

Kharkiv’s Ariadne Mimics and Gesture Theatre has 25 volunteer actors with complete or partial hearing loss. A grant from the EU-funded “Upshift Ukraine” project helped them stage a contemporary adaptation of William Shakespeare’s “The Tamign of the Shrew”, buy costumes, curtains and lighting. The performance is adapted for all spectators – all the dialogues are voiced by announcers, there is music and dancing. The company is going on tour in Ukraine and dreams to make a movie in sign language  sometime in the future. Read more

EIB provided loan funding for repairs of radiation protection hospital in Kharkiv

Kharkiv Hospital for Radiation Protection annually inspects 95,000 people who suffered from the Chernobyl Disaster from Kharkiv, Donetsk and Luhansk regions. In 2019, the hospital was repaired for the first time in 25 years using the European Investment Bank’s loans and regional budget financing. The operating room can now carry out two operations simultaneously, and the resuscitation unit is one of the best in Kharkiv region. Read more

Football’s Triumph Over War: How children football games built peace for over 20 years in crisis zones across world

Denmark’s Anders Levinsen has left a senior position at the UN Refugee Agency to travel to conflict zones and build peace through children’s football matches. In 2017, with EU funding, the Open Football Fun School project was launched in Ukraine to help boys and girls from eastern Ukraine adapt to host communities. The project has hosted football festivals for nearly 14,000 children from nine regions, attracting more than a thousand adult volunteers, including psychologists and international experts. Read more

EU supports Vesele hromada in Zaporizhia region

Residents of Vesele amalgamated territorial community are not afraid of being active, offering cooperation and implementing experimental projects. They built a solar power plant in the place of abandoned landfill. An administrative service center was opened in Vesele, modernized with the help from Swedish experts. The community has bought and operates the first mobile waste sorting line in Ukraine. Schoolchildren are able to grow vegetables in school greenhouses, learn to manage the community using table games, and record their own programs for the local radio station. Read more

EU supports probation system reform in Ukraine

One of the probation clients got into a traffic accident, while driving the customer’s expensive car. The other started a drunken brawl with the patrol police. A hunter got his unregistered gun confiscated, a homeless person was accused of a petty theft… Previously no other option than going to prison was available to most of them. For a long time, the majority of the prisoners have ended up behind the bars, they had no other option. However, the things changed 2 years ago. Thousands of people now are rehabilitated and corrected on the basis of their community rather than imprisoned.  But not many people know about this transformation in Ukraine.  Meanwhile, in 2 years of the probation functioning, more than 200,000 convicts got the chance to correct without deprivation of liberty. Currently, 65,000 people are serving community-based sentences.

The European Union Project Pravo-Justice, which involves Western and domestic experts in this work, helps to introduce the probation in Ukraine. They provide advice to the probation staff, conduct trainings, and introduce volunteer programs. To which extent are they succeeding to reform the post-Soviet system and change the society’s attitude towards the convicts, with the support of European countries? Read more