Global Ukrainians: the time has come for the return of Ukraine’s capital

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On July 10,2015 a three day forum “Global Ukranians” organized by the civic platform “Global Ukrainians” got underway at the Ukrainian House in Kyiv.

The goal of the forum is to create and develop a global network of young Ukrainian leaders to promote Ukraine in the world and to support the growth and progress of a thriving post-Maidan Ukraine.
Countless civic groups and individuals in Ukraine and abroad have been working since the Maidan to aid in the forward progress of the country, among them EMPR (EuromaidanPR) the first independent citizen media about Ukraine.

The forum “Global Ukraine” has initiated combining the efforts of all those who seek to accelerate the pace of change and improvements in Ukraine – to promote structural reforms, economic growth, the development of a civic society, and the assumption of responsibility and power to affect the processes that are taking place in the country.

Leaders of pro-Ukrainian movements in other countries attended the opening of the forum. Experience in consolidating active Ukrainians and developing policies was shared; a video-greeting from various Ukrainian diasporas was featured.

In welcoming remarks Ruslana Lyzhychko, a Ukrainian vocalist and one of the leaders of the Euromaidan noted that the volunteerism that has become so common and widespread, and carrying the Maidan ideas and initiatives forward in Ukraine has become a social phenomenon on a global scale.

Highlights from the first day of the forum:

Violeta Moskalu, Ph.D., University of Lorraine (France), Euromaidan activist, co-founder of the Forum “Global Ukrainians”:

“The organizing committee of ‘Global Ukrainians’ is tackling two key areas: bringing information from and about Ukraine to the world and engaging and restoring Ukraine’s intellectual and financial assets.”

“Advancing a global perspective and understanding, developing a broader knowledge and awareness of the world as it is today is crucial for Ukraine, and especially for the youth of Ukraine. The XXI century is radically different from what we had before. Communication in today’s digital world is easy and it simplifies exchanging ideas and developing concepts and projects for pro-Ukrainian platforms anywhere in the world.”

“International support is one of the chief aspects in advancing swift reforms in Ukraine. The Forum ‘Global Ukrainians’ can work to strengthen the job of the Foreign Ministry of Ukraine in protecting the interests of Ukraine in the world. It will take time for the state institutions to reform. The Maidan and the war have shown us the enormous potential the new international Ukrainian pressure groups have; we need to reflect on and propose sustainable strategies and new mechanisms for developing public and cultural diplomacy.”

Vladyslav Troitskyi, founder of GogolFest:

“They say Ukraine is the offshore haven for people with passion. On the one hand we are in a very dramatic, alarming situation. But on the other hand, we have a democracy: there are no authoritarian figures standing over us, there is only the sky above. We should be creating… But we have three forms of the front line running through our country: the actual front line in the war in eastern Ukraine where Russia is pressing in on our country; the office of the Department of Housing which upon entering you realize you have stepped into a hostile feudal fiefdom; and the third line runs through our hearts and spirits. It seems impossible to win. Building a new world is the only way.”

Evhen Bystrytskyi, Ph.D, professor, Executive Director of the International Renaissance Fund (Patron of the Forum “Global Ukrainains”):

“The International Renaissance Fund supports the forum as a platform for global cultural communication on the changes and reforms in Ukraine.”

“This forum is a continuation of the Euromaidan which stood in defense of dignity and decency in Ukraine – it stood for the Ukrainian nation.”

The opening day of the forum was full of good will and sincere dialogue. The excellent organization of the event and the superb pianist who played on the legendary blue-and-yellow piano contributed to the wonderful atmosphere.

Bohdan Tserkovniak, coordinator of the event said that up to 50 speakers and panel discussions with experts in geopolitics, political science, finance, business and economics, law and jurisprudence, agriculture, culture, and journalism are scheduled to fill the three-day forum. National and cultural diplomacy as a new phenomenon in the global community was presented and discussed on the first day; the topics on the second day were national diplomacy in hybrid war, promoting contemporary Ukrainian art, innovation, and economic growth; the forum will come to a close with an outline for strategies in public diplomacy.

We hope the Forum “Global Ukrainians” will become an important springboard for consolidating the efforts of Ukrainians around the world in bringing vital change to Ukraine, changing the perception of Ukraine around the world, and affecting change in the World for the good of humanity.

Olena Okras, EMPR

EMPR, O. R. contributed to this publication

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