Ukrainian society is experiencing a continuous process of democratisation and a long-lasting dialogue with the EU-neighbouring states in Europe so it is censoriously eyed by Russian Federation. An armed conflict in the East of Ukraine is a heart-breaking challenge for a civil society in terms of overcoming a war fallout, especially death and forced internal displacement of people. The long-term effects of this war, like traumatisation, growing aggression potential, social conflicts, raising poverty and the loss of perspectives in personal development, are expressed by old stereotypes. Some of these actual Ukrainian challenges can be find in the (former) conflict-regions of Armenia and Georgia. These challenges are still influencing the societies of both countries.
Within two projects in Ukraine – “Citizen Media for Intercultural and Political Dialogue (2015)” and “Citizen Journalism and Digital Media Dialogue for Social Participation” (2016), we had the following tasks:
– to build a pool of multiplicators in the sectors of media, NGOs and Political / Administrative;
– to develop the models and structures of decentralisation to build up a strong civil society;
– to found nationwide networks of actors in civil society and public sector
The aim of this year project is to transform these tasks for Armenia and Georgia.
The project wants to motivate active people, multiplicators, organisations and institutions of Ukraine, Georgia and Armenia to start changing the perspectives of media education and political dialogue so that different communities of the societies could reach a better undestanding. We want to support a constructive dialogue and to rebuild trust inside the society which has been drifting apart recently.
According to the background of the unsolved territory conflicts in Ukraine, Armenia and Georgia, the gap between self and partner perception should be decreased.
All three countries are the victims of constant opposition between Russia and European Union. This is one of the reasons of the conflicts in Nagorno-Karabakh, South-Ossetia and Donbas.
To reach the set goals, the project will use different instruments:
- a) experience exchange, discussions, seminars and the articulation of different views on the mentioned topics;
- b) an input from experts in politics, administrating and civil society interaction;
- c) workshops based on sharing knowledge about media technologies;
- d) medial editing of the results (a – c);
- e) creation of media products (video, audio, blog, photography, etc.) which should be published in participant-countries;
- f) creation of network between Ukraine, Georgia and Armenia.
Beyond these precise results, the importance of a pluralistic and democratic society as a key to solve conflicts, will also be a part of the project. That include the freedom of speech and free media systems based on the values of journalism. In this context, public media and social networks are becoming more and more important. This implies that media qualifications are also producing new chances on the job market and new perspectives are developing, especially for young people. The structure of the project also can leas to positive results for NGOs and educational institutions in case of cooperation.
The project will give an opportunity to young people to actively participate in the development of economic and social perspectives.
Teachers, students, journalists, politicians, scientists, representatives of NGOs and administrators will work on these issues within the project.
Dr. Wolfgang Ressmann