EHU continues to coordinate civic engagement projects in Belarus

Thanks to the support of the Open Society Foundations, starting from May 2019, the European Humanities University (EHU) continues to coordinate “Fostering Civil Society in Belarus 2.0” project aimed at strengthening cooperation between NGOs and EHU, as well as fostering civic engagement in Belarus.

The project is implemented by students and graduates of EHU, involved in a number of civic engagement initiatives in Belarus. The first stage of the project was successfully accomplished in summer 2018.

In August, a number of initiatives under the umbrella of sub-project Belarusian Young Leaders, took place, including a master-class on media literacy conducted by Nasta Lojka, EHU Alumna (Class 2015). Nasta is a member of the Human Constanta human rights network and shared a number of aspects how interactions with law enforcement institutions, as well as consumer protection and human rights organizations should be handled. Initiatives, covering these topics are rare for the city of Homiel, hence it is particularly important that youth of the second largest city of Belarus has actively participated in this master-class and a follow-up discussion.

On September 13-15, Homiel hosted a widely-renowned Belarusian writer and faculty members of the EHU Department of Humanities and Arts Assoc. Prof. Victor Martinovich, who conducted a two-day long intense writing master-class. This has provided an opportunity for citizen of Homiel to practice own free writing skills, debate over topics of the homeland, civil society, creativity and others. Additionally, for the first time in Homiel, Assoc. Prof. Martinovich presented his new book “Mova”.

Charity project OP SHOP aims at junior orphans from the Homiel social care center and held 8 meetings in July-August. Upon completing a seminar on methods of EQ development, the core of the project’s work has been focused tEQart workshops. Under the framework of these workshops, volunteers of the project make orphans acquainted with emotions by developing participants EQ through playing methods and creativity-empowerment assignments. Development of the EQ and conversations about emotions have supplemented the prior directions of the OP SHOP project work in a very meaningful and rewarding way.

During the last two month, OP SHOP team has developed a spinoff track #opshop_ontheroad — education trips to the regions. In July-August volunteers of the project took part in a number of municipal events as guest speakers in Mazyr (Picnic of Initiatives) and Babruisk (Personal Growth Festival). Interactive emotional-education platforms presented in Belarusian regions attracted a substantial attention of parents and their children.

Fostering Civil Society in Belarus 2.0 project continues to work on the sensitive social problematics. On October 11, for the first time in Minsk, EHU will host series of public lectures “EHU Talks”. Speakers of EHU Talks are EHU faculty, students and graduates.

By the end of October, Education vs Borders project will present the first results of the project implementation, focused on rights of people with special needs for their career and labor. Project team together with social partners are working under development of the online-platform, where (1) people with special needs will be provided with an opportunity for a focused job search, (2) socially-responsible businesses from Belarus will be able to publish inclusive job offers.


Participants of the project express gratitude to the Open Society Foundations and EHU for providing support and cooperation during all stages of project implementation in Belarus.