On 10-11th of October the city of Kryvyi Rih hosted the international conference Veloforum – the main event for cycling activists in Ukraine, which brought together public representatives, experts, enterpreneurs and local governments representatives to share experience and ideas on the development of cycling.
This year, Veloforum gathered over 110 participants from 29 cities of Ukraine and from six European countries: Belarus, UK, Germany, Poland, Serbia and Ukraine. Besides intense program of presentations, participants got time for informal communication and industrial cycling tours in Kryvyi Rih.
“Such events as Veloforum is not only a great opportunity for bicycle activists from all over Ukraine to meet, but also extremely motivating occasion for the local community, particularly cycling ones, to unite and promote the city and cycling opportunities in a joint effort ,” – says Alisa Hnydiuk, co-organizer of Veloforum, Institute of the city of Kryvyi Rih.
Veloforum is organized every year in a different city of Ukraine. The right of the city to hold a conference is gotten on a competitive basis. The organizers of Veloforum are Center for Social and Business Initiatives and Kyiv Cyclists’ Association, in partnership with cycling organizations and municipalities of host cities. Previous year the event was held in Kyiv, Lutsk, Ivano-Frankivsk, Lviv, Poltava and Yevpatoria. Veloforum 2016 will be held in Kharkiv.
We are expressing our sincere gratitude to the donor institutions and organizations that supported this year’s event, especially the European Union and the Heinirch Boll Stiftung in Ukraine.
Mini skansen in Yaremche provides free services to school students, veterans and persons with disabilities
The open-air museum “Karpaty in Miniature” was attended by more than 300 school students, veterans of the military conflict and persons with disabilities, at no cost for them. This is the official statistics for the period starting from July 2015, when the museum was open. The mini-skansen is a result of cooperation of Center for Social and Business Initiatives, the Carpathian National Nature Park and socially responsible local businesses. It works 7 days a week with a standard admission fee of 30 UAH (1.25 Euros).
On July 10-12, 2015, Center for Social and Business Initiatives in close collaboration with Kyiv Cyclists’ Association organized the BikeCamp. This was an intensive training for young activists that advocate for bicycles as a sustainable form of transport for their cities. 21 activists spent three days together learning theoretical approaches and practical tools to make their advocacy activities more efficient and successful. The event was supported by Heinrich Boll Stiftung – Ukraine.
The BikeCamp took place at a remote, calm location in the midst of the Carpathian nature near the village of Vorokhra, Ivano-Frankivska oblast. The participation in the training was free of charge, but participants were required to pay their way to and from the event, and also to bring and use their own tents and sleeping bags.
Training participants were selected based on an open application process after call for application was published on specialized websites velotransport.info, avk.org.ua, and relevant Facebook pages and groups. Among 33 applicants, 21 were selected to participate. They represented cities from each part of Ukraine: Vinnytsia, Poltava, Kolomyia, Vyshgorod, Mykolaiv, Zaporizhia, Odesa, Boyarka, Ovruch, Artemivsk, Bila Tserkva, Kharkiv, Ivano-Frankivsk and Kyiv. Besides the good regional representation, the audience was balanced by gender and age characteristics, consisting of 13 males and 8 females of various age groups, from 20 to 45 years old.
The program of the training covered important topics of advocacy and organizational development, including management and recruiting of volunteers, government relations, media relations, business relations, fundraising, budgeting and financial planning, project development and management, civil advocacy.
During the last day of the training, unanimous evaluation forms were distributed among participants, and 16 filled forms were returned to organizers. According to this feedback, 100 percent of participants pointed to their high level of satisfaction with all aspects of the event (educational content, work of trainers, location, meals) . Also, 100 percent stated that they would surely recommend this training for their peer activists.
An additional result of the BikeCamp training was the forming of an unofficial coalition of NGOs that advocate for bicycles. This new coalition, using the time between and after training sessions, drafted a concept and key points of the national policy advocacy campaign within the local elections of October 25, titled “I vote for bicycles!”. These outputs were finalized after the BikeCamp by Kyiv Cyclists’ Association and CSBI, and on September 15 the campaign was officially launched on September 15th with a press-conference in Kyiv. The goal of the campaign is to affect the agenda of electoral candidates to encourage them to take the commitment of pursuing cycling policies in case of their election to mayor’s post or city hall seats. The website of the campaign is: http://2015.velotransport.info/
The first international expo forum called EcoExpo Karpaty took place in Yaremche on 25-26 of July, 2015. It gathered several hundred producers and service providers from the Carpathian regions of Ukraine and Slovakia. The event included a conference that presented best practices and non-profit projects, and a street market of locally produced, nature-friendly goods and services.
Center for Social and Business Initiatives was assisting the organizers with holding this event in our city. The event was implemented as a part of a larger project supported by the European Union.
Call for travel guides to participate in a transborder study trip on Jewish heritage in September 2015
CSBI and та Ośrodek „Brama Grodzka – Teatr NN” (Lublin, Poland) are inviting travel guides from Ukraine to apply for participation in a cross-border study trip on Jewish heritage that will be held on 6-12 of September, 2015 in the bordering regions of Ukraine, Poland and Belarus.
The application form is available here https://goo.gl/IAaLJw until July 31, 2015 (in Ukrainian).
45 participants will be selected for the study trip, 15 from each country.
The event is a part of the project Project “Shtetl Routes. Vestiges of Jewish cultural heritage in cross-border tourism” that is co-financed by the European Union under the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument as part of the Programme for Cross-Border Co-operation Poland – Belarus – Ukraine 2007–2013.
Supported by: International Visegrad Fund
Project span: May 2015 – May 2016
Leading organization: Charter’97 Foundation (Belarus)
Co-operating institutions: Institute of Public Affairs (Warsaw, Poland), Freedom Files Foundation, EUROPEUM – Institute for European Policy(Prague, Czech Republic), International Centre for Democratic Transition (Budapest, Hungary), M.E.S.A. 10 (Bratislava, Slovakia), Institute for Public Affairs (Bratislava, Slovakia), Center for Social and Business Initiatives of Yaremche (Ukraine).
Objectives: The project is aimed to promote the EU integration in two countries of EaP – Belarus and Ukraine, to transfer experience accumulated by V4 countries in political and socio-economic areas (reforms, handling with the past), including the successes and failures, and to elaborate the efficient response to the efforts to undermine the process of integration of EaP countries into the EU.
Project activities include analysis and comparison of experiences of V4 and EaP countries, development of policy recommendations, publishing articles and interviews with the project experts.