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 Ukraine has contributed into Roots for Reconciliation projects through their leaders – the alumnus of Roots for Reconciliation project. Knowledge, practices, methods, networking gained in/through RfR projects are being actively implementing in a variety of current local, national and international projects by our leaders. In their work they use relevant peacebuilding techniques, learnt through RfR, and promote Roots as a very powerful program of training a peace builders. More, than 1000 of Ukrainian children and youth benefited during more than 10 implemented peacemaking projects. Below are samples of an input of Ukrainian “Rooters” into development of RfR program and into promotion of it in Ukraine and other countries.
• Natalia Vainilovich, now – National YMCA Ukraine trainer. In the Roots projects in 2017-2018 introduced a new direction – Art for Peace. Natalia held several workshops on the playback theatre during a few RfR events. She was also one of the main trainers at Orange Camp, held by the YMCA Georgia during the ART4PEACE 2018 project, which promoted art as a tool for building peace both at the person-to-person level and at more global levels. The participants were involved in training for the playback theatre and made a performance about the relations between countries that are in a military conflict. It helped to recognize each other’s feelings and create a warm trust atmosphere of mutual understanding and sharing common pain. Natalia is an author of an article “Art for Peace” in “Peacework guidebook”, a RfR manual, where she described theatrical techniques and practical exercises that can be applied in different social contexts.
· Yana Bakalenko, now – the President of YMCA Kyiv, national trainer, participated in Peace Work Institute Reunion 2019, assisted with project evaluation – interviewed participants. Yana and Nataliia Vainilivich, using the RfR experience, have prepared a guide for the leaders of the children’s camps “Peace Day at the Camp”.
Yana was one of the initiators and key leaders of a Project “Impulse for Intercultural Dialogue”, 2018. This project, created by the PWI participants from YMCAs of Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine, was focused on the extension of cross-border dialogue, exchange of program and cultural experiences, and setting a solid foundation for long-term collaboration between young people from the three national movements. As a result young people raised their cooperation and team-building skills; learned about leadership development and personal growth methods, etc, with the main purpose to put the acquired skills into practice on the spot and elaborate joint ideas of future cooperation.
• Yuliia Polyvla, a participant of the RfR events and Reunion in 2015 as well as a leader of the Ukrainian group for the RfR ProFest in 2015. Yuliia implemented the idea of peace and critical thinking through two successfully realized projects:
1) Peace Camp operated by YMCA Kyiv each year from 2015 till now. The camp include peacebuilding education, sport, scouting, arts, crafts, drama, dancing workshops and trainings on leadership, communication, children’s rights, environmental protection. The idea that every child was heard and understood; and peacebuilding and social integration were promoted too. For the last five years, more than 500 kids from difficult background participated in the camp.
2) “Path to Peace: Responding to the needs of young people in Ukraine”: a response to the tragic events in Ukraine in 2014-2015 (aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine: illegal annexation of Crimea and occupation of the part of 2 regions of Ukraine in the east), aimed to create a network of peacemakers of internally displaced youth and local youth, empowering them to develop their projects promoting peace. The project was supported by the European Youth Foundation and 30 young people from different regions of Ukraine participated.
• Maksym Studylko, YMCA Vinnitsa board member, admitted methods he learned from “Roots For Reconciliation” as very beneficial in making changes in his city namely in work with internally displaced people, citizens from socially unprivileged groups, who suffered from human trafficking etc. Digital activism is one of his favorite themes while being a participant of PWI. “Do no harm” is a basic approach based on human rights, conflict management, SDGs that I use in camps, festivals, NGO, in my daily life” – he noted.
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.
“Think, feel, resolve!” is a project aiming to make young leaders more conscious about the roots and nature of conflicts, as well as to give knowledge and tools on how to do peaceful communication and solve conflicts at personal and group levels.
Young people all over the world are actively involved in many conflicts because of different negative factors: discrimination, violence, lack of opportunities, break of human rights and many others. Additional negative factor in Ukraine is that around 1 million 600 thousand Internally Displaced People (IDP) had to move from the Eastern part of Ukraine, were war actions are going on, and from Crimea, illegally annexed by Russia. These people have to be integrated into the life of the hosting communities and this is a hard path to walk.
Even after a few years there is still a tension between the hosts and newcomers. Rising radicalism, hostile attitude between young people, fake information on different issues of social and economical life are the obstacles to harmonic relationships and democratic development that have to be overcome through peaceful communication, respect and mutual understanding. Young people need to be reminded that peacebuilding is the only way we can use to prevent excluding people from society due to their specific place of birth, language, religion or other differences. All described events had a significantly precarious effect on current social situation in Ukraine too namely lacking of non-violent communication, respectful attitude, not being able to reduce emotional tension in crisis among youth, which is extremely vital for stable civil society.
“Think, feel, resolve!” promotes a holistic approach to conflict resolution: how to use critical analyzing of information; with consideration of people’s emotions, attitude and personal experience; how to prevent conflict (using “Do no Harm” and “No Hate Speech” methods), what to do for peaceful conflict solving. The way conflict is developing depends on personal perception of a conflict situation, on specific respond/actions people make. Therefore, a non-biased peaceful attitude may be shaped and new strategies of solving problems can be created among youth.
Young leaders have to be capable to react correctly and to overcome conflicts in their personal life and in community. Participants and other youngsters will learn through innovative effective tools, such as Playback Theatre, Digital Activism and other methods of non-formal education, about peacebuilding technics, tolerant attitude and, as a result, how to create respect to each other and keep calm friendly atmosphere, using empathy, words and through actions.
Format: 4-days training session, applications contest and mini-grants implementation.
Target group: the first stage of the project will be National Training the Trainers for volunteer leaders of 18-30 years old to give them deep knowledge and tools on conflict resolution issues. They will share gained knowledge and skills with their peer on the local level, will use in the activities of their local YMCAs and in the local communities to prevent conflicts and/or to solve them if they appear. As a result, a network of young peace builders (around 100 young people) will be created who will exchange their experience and help each other and people around in conflict resolution if needed.
Participants of the Training the Trainers: 25 (21 young leaders, 3 trainers, 1 project coordinator)
Teaching a conscious approach to peaceful communication / conflict resolution will consist of three components:
- Critical thinking: skills to analyze information, separate facts from opinions, work with beliefs;
- Emotional intelligence: ability to recognize your and others emotions, to understand the cause of emotions and how to control them, to increase empathy. Instrument – interactive theatre (Playback theatre, elements of the Oppressed theatre, game improvisation);
- Conflict resolution: learning tools for the peaceful resolution of conflicts, as well as the typology of conflicts, the basics of mediation.
After 4-day training, young leaders from different local YMCAs will take part in a contest of mini-grant applications. The 3 projects-winners will be identified and implemented, focused on prevention/solving of conflict situations (for example, bulling in school or other) in the local communities. The mini-projects will include trainings on peace building issues with local youth, round tables with involvement of the local authorities, publications in the social networks and local mass media on the issues of peace building. In total around 100 children and youth will be reached during the mini-projects implementation.
Plan on project implementation:
- August: Preparation of advertising and methodological materials;
- September: Presentation of the project at annual YMCA Ukraine Conference;
- October: 4-day trainings on 3 topics. Announcement of mini-grants contest;
- November: 3 winners implement mini projects on conflict resolution, non-violent communication;
- December: Summing up, producing of reports.
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 Ukraine: none
Total budget: 10,000 Euro