The aim for youth people of the Baltic Region activities is to increase participation in society by supporting active citizenship and promoting the development of social and intercultural skills.
For example, creative actions in the field of youth for small-scale groups that enable participation with a low threshold have been added to the plane.
In the youth activities NGO Baltic Region places special emphasis on inclusion, communications, environmental friendliness and participation in society.
The few most important impact objectives of the guide youth operations:
- The equality and internationalisation increases
- The well-being of youth members improves
- Ecological-minded thinking increases
- Learning raises the level of competence
Together with partners, winter and summer camps for schoolchildren and families are being implemented usually. Trainers are being trained, and camp programs are being developed.
Youth Coordinator Victor Lauzhin tel. 0440100535
International Youth Conference “North Dialog of Culture”
8 – 10 of May 2015, Finland, Turku
A total of 40 visitors complemented by over 60 local participants had taken part in the event of conference. As planned, about 6 delegates had participated from each of the 5 participating countries in complete to Finnish side.
The welcome evening conduct Victoria Ryabukhina the coordinator of the first evening “Get to know each other”. It gave rise continued informal discussions over dinner.
All the participants have been taken through a set of conference sessions, discussions (around tables), master-classes, interaction performance, art showing and folk concert. All participants had enjoyed a tour of Turku and optionally visited the Castle of Turku.
Every day of the conference ended with a public event at one of Turku’s venues: the performance, the showing Arts “Brighter thoughts on culture” and vocal folk song’s concert.
Official opening of the conference took place at 9 am on 8 of May at the hotel Sokos Hamburger Börs. Important part of conference was plenary sessions.
As part of the conference sessions, based on few main speakers of the Partnership and an Authority of Turku has been commenced:
Seppo Lehtinen Chairman of Turku City Council “The potential priorities of cooperation and the common areas of interest”;
Mika Akkanen manager of International Affairs City of Turku “Program Northern Growth Corridor – Uniting People, Culture and Business”;
Mikko Lohikoski Member of Board of Trustees Fund “Culture”, Director of Communications
and External relationship City of Turku “The strategy of cooperation”;
Hasan Habib Executive Director of International Youth Services and multicultural activities, of co-operation of youth public organisations of Turku and Northern European countries;
Victoria Rybukhina Docent of the St. Petersburg State Transport University, Head of youth School of the leadership and communication, “Changing cultures in a changing world”;
Valentina Volodjko Chairman of Latvian women leaders Club “Women for harmony”,
“The new ways of networking and cooperation”;
Margarita Popova Chairman of Board Youth Centre “Multi-City”, Roskilde University Denmark,
“Experiences of the youth activities in the multicultural environment”;
Lidia Prokhorova Chairman of the Entrepreneurs Association of St.Peterburg, “Cultural industry potential for the international entrepreneurship”;
Svetlana Myhkyrä Chairman International Culture Association of Turku, “Development a festival youth activities”.
North dialog of youth: Moderator Victoria Rybukhina;
Finding harmony in intercultural communication. The people of our cities try to decide the problem of cultural development and consolidation of partnership.
Multicultural competence and cultural evolution: Moderator Victoria Ryabukhina.
An update on ethics, new perspectives on the training of young leaders.
Improving partnership in the field of culture: Moderator Olga Gladkaja.
The people of our cities try to decide the problem of cultural development and consolidation of partnership. We need try to reach it not only on official level but on the level of intercultural development.
The identity and own cultural process of comprehending: Moderator Margarita Popova.
Understanding the particular features of the other culture helps us to know more about ourselves. It would be necessary to formulate the clear submission, representation what we are in the eyes of other people.
Concept of innovative entrepreneurship that is based on culture, education and networking: Moderator Irina Ostonen. The discussion was attended by representatives of young people from participating countries with strong enthusiasm.
Many similarities to the job of the visiting organizations were observed, while the different opinion and the experience span of the presenters provided new useful findings.
The master classes for each of the groups had been conducted by professionals in each area:
Entrepreneurs in cultural sphere – Representatives of the Baltic Region in Turku Anton Romanov spent master training in a non-formal learning activity focusses on different skills (intercultural, organizational, project management, communication, etc.).
Inter-acting theatrical master-class with Karim Charkov producer.
The public events took place in various venues of Turku every day of the meeting, providing all delegate of youth an opportunity to express their experience in truly international settings. It has been a pleasure to observe the variety of styles and the fresh streams in new forms, the sounds and the visuals. Every public event had been pictured of the delegate and reports will soon be published.
The events at the same time provided an informal communication space for all the delegates not directly involved in them and for locals to network and share experiences. It is a pleasure to note that despite any local organizers were having on this matter, all visiting parties had a keen interest in the culture of the other parties and the attendance, although not declared as mandatory, has been over 90%.
PR / Engagement / Dissemination
Every accessible means of PR had been used by the hosting party and the partners to share the information about the upcoming conference and its public events. This included, first and foremost, publications on partners’ websites and distribution through social media channels, publications in offline media and distribution through organizations’ own partner networks.
- Candidate selection (November): the requirements to the partners in every participating country included public announcements and a selection process consisting of auditions/interviews with the prospective delegates. This process has initiated interest in the project within the appropriate social circles . The response rate had been very high in some countries.
The website and the social network pages were started prior to this step, striving to focus as much of the interaction as possible around the online community for maximum interrelation of the involved persons and social circles during and, mainly, after the meeting.
- Events promotion (January – February): the hosts had applied the advertising channels at their disposal – websites, social network advertising, outdoor, printed media, partner networks. Press releases had been sent to all major media in Turku to announce the upcoming events and their goals.
- Promotion during the event: during the whole days of the events a dedicated team composed of conference delegates had been regularly (2 times a day) publishing articles at the BalticRegion website further distributing them via social networks.
We must admit here the organizers were expecting higher public attendance and are drawing the conclusions regarding improvements that should be made for future, some of which will be readily applied to help to organize the meeting in Turku next year on 2016.
- Post-event PR (ongoing): Photos and videos are still published as they are processed, mainly via social networks. About 100 people have joined our page after the event had ended.
Multiculturalism / Integration
Many efforts have been put into providing the public information in Finnish, English and Russian to engage as wide audience as possible. In same time young people communicate freely with Finnish peers in English. A steady percentage of locals among the visitors of the public events adequate to the overall public attendance has shown some interest of the general public.
Interactions with Finnish professionals during master-classes and performance further contributed to better appreciation of the conference topics within the professional circles related to creative and paved the way for future cooperation.
Internally, the meeting had achieved the recognition of the cultural diversity of people who relate themselves to the Russian-speakers’ culture. For the representatives from Finland the organizers had made all the attempts to allow them free communication by providing translations or separate explanations to those.
We have achieved the goal of demonstrating to the delegates and the general public the influence of local cultures on the migrants at various stages of their integration as expressed in their behaviors, attitudes, language and arts. As such, it had been interesting to observe the “Norwegian” of the Norway Russian-speakers, the “Danish” of the Denmark delegates and so on. Commonalities derived from the original culture however pertain, demonstrating the existence of a common cultural code and helping the communication across borders.
Current work / Further Steps
North Dialog of Culture is going on.
At the conference, the Latvian partners had presented their event all partners are heading for in Autumn 2015 that will be focused on stage arts and festival. It’s also worthwhile to mention that on April 30th the Latvian partner with the support of the Denmark partner had submitted an application to the Youth in stable Civil program to keep the non-EU members involved in our activities. All partners are currently expecting to receive the delegates requirements from the Latvian partner.
The joint work has been commenced and continues and it will be made public as soon as its contents take a firmer shape.
Partners will be do steps to support the development of the collaboration by means of public grants, crowd-funding and sponsoring.
Also, the Finland partner will be looking for further ways to finance the next years’ North Dialog of Cultural. Probably it cannot be a part of Norden, however we are grateful to the Norden Culture point programs for allowing us the opportunity to start something big.
We are thankful to all the partners who helped us produce this complex event. First and foremost – the Norden programs Culture Points, Turku City Authority. Our permanent partners Armas Lahonitty lord mayor, emeritus and Hannu Visuri Chairman of Turun TSL Opintojärjesö. Turku department “Avustustoimikunta”.
Our educational partners also deserve a special note – we are thankful to Suomen-Venäjä Seura and Suomen TyöväenOpisto, to all the presenters for their invaluable time and contribution.
Thanks are well deserved by our volunteers and friends who had made it possible for us to live through this task staying focused and to accomplish all the big and little things that made the event happen.
Huge thanks to all of you!
We love to regard this event not as something that has been and gone, but rather as a first step on the way to more useful and exciting work, and are eager to see how the project will develop.
Please stay tuned.
On behalf of the Baltic Region team,
North Dialog of Culture Coordinator