12 November 2020

72 students of the GNR.NEXT class defended their final projects aimed at solving real-life problems for their communities. Many of those projects are in the implementation stage.
The projects’ topics are a reflection of the program approach of launching positive changes locally and then cascading those changes nation-wide.
The projects are very diverse. They target environmental situations, teenagers’ extracurricular activities, digital technologies implementation, prevention of abuse, craft industries development just to mention a few.

Prevention of the waste collapse in the small town of Makariv through waste sorting was the focal point of Ivan Sybyryakov`s project. Started in 2018 with a modest investment of 600 hryvnias it became a true sorting plant. Six neighboring villages joined the initiative. Ivan believes that his sorting site can trigger similar projects in the whole region and thus prevent the environmental disaster. Project wise he wants to transform the site into a recycling plant with the participation of the local entrepreneurs. Currently, one of them, the project participants is at the final stage of preparation for the launch ofa mini-plant for
recycling the plastic bottles.

Natalia Som has started a creative hub for teenagers in the local library in a small town. The project’s objective is to establish a space where teenagers could realize their creativity and spend their free time. Using local libraries for such hubs also promote reading and help libraries to upgrade and become cultural hot spots in the small communities. Young people are expected to have new role models, develop their creativity, and find their ways to jobs in creative industries.

Foreign languages club is another project for teenagers. It is focused on educational opportunities and additional classes for schoolchildren from Skhidnytsia, a Carpathian town. Finding foreign language teachers in mountain villages is difficult. Instead, the club is established to help children learn languages and socialize. The club will start working in early 2021 at the local library. It will help to revive it as well. “I hope that learning foreign languages will help our children to get a better education and have a better future”, – Olga Baumkenter, the GNR.Next graduate said about her project.

Elizaveta Miroshnychenko presented #wecreate digital space, a communication platform for craft industries, where the craftsmen could get access to the expertise and find partners. The Beta version of the platform is already in operation.

Those projects are the first step towards changing Ukraine for the better. We wish our new
alumni to remain the agents of positive change.