LGBT: 2-gether against discrimination — Ukraine


Programme: Youth in Action programme, action 3.1. training course

Dates: 29 September – 7 October 2013

Venue: Chernivtsi, Ukraine

Participants: Martin Beneš, Barbora Cinádrová

Project report:

At the end of September me and my friend Barbora Cinádrová as the participants went on an unforgettable project in Ukraine on very questionable topic about the LGBT community. The name and password of the project was clear – Together Against Discrimination!

After a nearly 17 – hour bus trip from Brno we were thrown at a busy bus station in a little gloomy Ukrainian city of Chernivtsi, which can be a weak hour cross to the border with Moldova and the border with Romania. In less than 30 minutes we sat together with some other project participants in the office nonprofits PORA , a wonderful , selfless and incredibly capable organizers of the exchanges that we made ​​the acquaintance warm city. However, even these few hours “excursion ” ran like water and we were heading this time in a full report of all participants derelict bus from Soviet times, the dark forest road to our ” base ” where should the next 8 days it happen. After a while we admire the picturesque yellow lock alias colossal hotel, which stood somewhere in the mountains on the edge of a small Ukrainian village.

Followed day first – day familiarization with others – not missing teambuilding games, ” icebreakers ” and of course name games during which I ‘ve personally found that it is not always a good idea to give the first impression and that probably will spend a week in a multicultural team of great people from different parts of the world. And really, it happened! In the coming days, all of us have become wonderful friends. That was all the easier to present to other various posters, conclusions of debates about our countries or new ideas regarding the whole issue and despite some language barriers. 

As I mentioned, the topic exchange was actually very interesting and more than contradictory, which is why we both had a great opportunity to be in the interesting debates or sometimes sharp language shootouts, most of which have left anyone indifferent.

But I went to the principal our main task was to put our heads together and come up with some effective solutions, how to improve the situation regarding the LGBT community (the community of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people) and perhaps also to combat discrimination against this minority. I think we really came for some great ideas, but I personally believe that the most valuable results of the project were only a few.

1.  Some training  for ” intact ” participants – some of us (I believe above all two of us), we had the issue of such awareness like the others, which is rapidly changed (for the better of course!).

2.  Awareness of conflict —- Orthodox Church VS . —- LGBT community and especially appalling situation in Georgia – now I think I speak for the whole team (whether they are Spaniards, Portuguese, Italians and Czechs). None of us west – south – central European participants hardly had any idea how terrible the situation in Eastern Europe and the Caucasus. Being gay or lesbian in Georgia is dangerous, which we were able to Georgian participants, who themselves often had to fight for the life and dignity in their own country. It is very powerful to remember their stories and anecdotes, which we were able to tears (actually in tears!!) Sit for hours with his mouth open. Anyway, I hope that the project will start at least some effort involved us to change something for the better!!

3.  New dense buds – As it is in the projects (now repeating myself) I know incredible people and really good friends, that in the near future, perhaps we’ll see.

4, ” That’s it, how a good project should look” – the best organization for my last few projects – and real. Kristina and Nazar are nice, kind and wonderful people from the exchange of Ukrainian NGOs PORA, our incredibly amazed and refinement of the program. Also, the background whether food, transport and accommodation – everything was perfect. Great inspiration for future organizers.

5. KAPUSTA rules!!! – If you ever decide to visit the picturesque Ukraine ready to for kapusta everywhere ( UKR sprouts) are avoided. We met with some cabbage actually process from the early days when we did not lose much of anything cabbage, through the days when I started to slowly get used to the days when we could not do without cabbage can not even afternoon tea. For lovers of this vegetable is Ukraine ‘s paradise!

It is difficult to summarize everything to the last sentence, which should leave readers breathless. Fortunately, the output of the whole exchange fascinating video that clearly document how greatly we enjoyed all week ——- ) !!!


Martin Beneš (translated by Barbora Cinádrová)

You may like