1.With maximum 500 words demonstrate the organisation’s contribution specifically towards YMCA Europe Roots for Reconciliation project. Let us know what do you think was that unique footprint of your organisation that enriched the Roots so far, and now deserves due appreciation.
YMCA Artsakh has been working in Artsakh (Karabakh) since 2004. The main fields of the organisation are:
- Conflict transformation;
- Summer camps;
- Non-formal education;
- Cultural projects;
- Environmental protection
Artsakh is a conflict region in South Caucasus. Despite the official cease-fire signed in 1994 with Azerbaijan, the clashes in the contact line have never ceased. For about two decades, politicians and policymakers didn’t succeed to improve the situation in the region.
There are very limited opportunities for young people in Artsakh and very few international organizations work in the region due to the difficult political situation. YMCA Artsakh is a youth organization with long-term experience and a high reputation in the community offering signature programs and providing a safe space for their implementation. Due to its hard work and the impact made, YMCA Artsakh has obtained the trust of the community members, especially the youth and has the support of the local and national government.
- YMCA Artsakh, YMCA Armenia and YMCA Georgia are co-founders of the ‘’Roots’’.
- RfR is the only project working with YMCA Artsakh, because of the political issues. The organization doesn’t have any other financial support.
- 2007-2009 there was RfR reunion organized in Shushi, Artsakh. The participants were from Armenia, Georgia, Russia (injured children from Beslan terror act) and other European countries.
- In 2013 in frames of the ‘’Roots’’ there was Program Festival organized in Shushi, Artsakh.
- In 2014 in frames of the ‘’Roots’’ a Study visit to Artsakh for the participants of the PWI.
- In frames of the RfR, YMCA Artsakh implemented 3 summer camps. These outdoor camps with about 100 people each, due to the financial support of the RfR Local Capacities for Peace Seed Grant Tool camps were a success. The main topics of the camp’s educational part were conflict transformation, conflict analysis, negotiation skills and peace work.
- YMCA-Artsakh was also involved in ‘’Peacework institute’’ of RfR project. The head of the YMCA-Artsakh David Melkumyan and the leaders Vova Ghulyan and Anzhelika Zakaryan were the graduates of the PWI. Another 6 volunteers took part in the local projects (‘’Art for Peace’’ camp in Georgia, Ureki).
- In 2019 in frames of the ‘’Roots’’ there was Programme Forum organized in Stepanakert, Artsakh.
- In 2019 an agreement of partnership between YMCA-Artsakh and YMCA of Glendale was signed.
2. With maximum 500 words elaborate on the concept of the project, which you plan to implement if awarded. Let us know how far that project promotes peace and whether it is in line with YMCA Europe Roots’ theory of change and what innovation it offers. Please indicate clearly who are the target group(s) benefiting from the initiative.
The aim of the project is to enlarge the number of young people interested in peacebuilding. We understand that traditional armed wars in the 21st century are accompanied by wars on virtual platforms and they should be managed respectively. Demonization, hate speech, catchy slogans, provocative propaganda, not true or falsified information and the combat against all these negative phenomena intensify with the development of information and communication technologies. But we strongly believe that every conflict has to come to an end one day and we believe in the great role that the younger generation plays in this.
What and how:
Based on the above-mentioned arguments, YMCA Artsakh will be running another outdoor camp in the village of Patara. The “Camp for Peace 2020” should be the logical continuation of the previous 3 camps. The working group will comprise of the leaders from Armenia and Artsakh. The key is that they are the alumni of the PWI.
The main components of the camp will be:
- Educational (training and workshops) part
- Conflict transformation
- Peace work tools
- Negotiation skills
- Critical thinking
- Media awareness
- Democratic and civil society
- Project writing2. TenSing and Cultural component
- YMCA TenSing component will target at developing the campers’ creative thinking. TenSing has always been a strong side for YMCA Artsakh and several Musical Festival events have been implemented, namely in Shushi in 2007, 2008 and 2009 in frames of the RfR project first phase.
3. Sport activities
- As volleyball was invented in frames of the YMCA, this year we decided to make a big game with all the teams and at the end have a champion team of the YMCA-Artsakh camp in volleyball.
When and where:
In order to achieve the goals and objectives set, YMCA Artsakh is planning to organize a youth camp at the end of July (probably, the last week), 2020. The camp will take place in the campsite of the village of Patara which is a great place for an outdoor camp with a well-built infrastructure and a great surrounding nature in the forest.
We plan to host up to 100 participants.
- YMCA-Artsakh leaders
- Participants (18-30 years) from different regions of Artsakh including the border communities.
Living all their life in a conflict region, hearing about their fathers injured/died in a war, and then, in 2016 passing this way themselves, makes a bit difficult for people to believe in peace and reconciliation.
These young people have few opportunities to get closer to peacebuilding, many of them are also from socially vulnerable families and have no opportunities for a good education. Some of them are from border communities and everyday struggles in inner and outside war, and the possibility of peace is being forgotten… This is why these youngsters are in need of YMCA!
3. Indicate the estimated project budget, and whereby over € 10,000, provide clear information on co-funding sources and guarantees.
Amount requested: 10,000 Euro
Co-funding YMCA Artsakh: none
Total budget: 10,000 Euro