Civic Engagement Workshop/Maysternya

Civic Engagement Workshop/Maysternya

Partners:  MitOst e.V. (Germany), Genius Loci (Poland), Education without borders (Belarus)

Duration: 2008 – 2015 years


“Civic Engagement Workshop” or “Maysternya” is a program of non-formal civic education for youth and support for their civic, social, and cultural initiatives. Within the program, participants improved their skills and communities through small initiatives.

“Maysternya” is the first project of the team that later founded “Insha Osvita”. The program started its activities in 2008 when Alona Karavai and Ivanna Chupak adapted the format of the international program of the Theodor Heuss Kolleg to the Ukrainian context. It was based on the Kolleg methodology. The main goal was to motivate young people to take an active civic position by implementing their own projects, with qualified support structured on the principle of “supporting the person”, rather than “supporting the project”.

In the first year, the program covered Donetsk and Rivne regions, and in the second year, Cherkasy region and Crimea were added. Later, the program became national and eventually international. The international component included young people from Ukraine, Poland, and Belarus who created projects in various areas such as ecology, human rights, time management, history, art, and more. Within the “Maysternya”, trainers from the Theodor Heuss Kolleg who guided developing and implementing social and cultural initiatives by participants conducted a series of seminars.

The program comprised several stages:

  • Idea Workshop – participants developed ideas for their own initiatives in their local communities.
  • Workshop of Actions – workshops with practical advice and experience for project implementation.
  • Workshop of Experience – the final stage where participants presented the results of their work and projects in the program and developed a vision for further activities.

Over the years of its existence, the program involved over 1,000 participants who implemented over 300 local initiatives and projects in their communities. The result of the program was the creation of a platform to encourage youth to take an active role in their environment through the adapted European experience. It also established partnerships with civil, governmental, and private sector organizations to strengthen the program of civic and political education for youth in Ukraine. Throughout the years of the program’s operation, participants learned and implemented their own projects in local communities. The program also contributed to the creation of horizontal connections both among Ukrainian activists and with foreign activists.

To learn more about the projects of Ukrainian participants from one of the program years (2015) and to get acquainted with Polish and Belarusian initiatives, you can follow the link.

Download attachment